The search for a missing six-year-old boy who fell into a river will continue on Sunday morning, emergency services said.

Lucas Dobson fell into the River Stour in Sandwich, Kent, on Saturday afternoon, with officers called to Richborough Road at about 1.20pm, Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) said.

Specialist search and rescue teams were joined by large numbers of public volunteers scouring river banks and waterways.

As the search was called off after 10pm on Saturday owing to darkness, members of the public were warned about their own safety if they continued to search, including working in groups and using torches.

Kent Fire and Rescue Service, who are working together to find a young child who fell into the River Stour in Sandwich. Credit: Kent Fire and Rescue Service

KFRS assistant director Chris Colgan said: "We’re all incredibly grateful to everyone who has given everything today to try and locate this little boy.

"Our thoughts are with him and his family tonight at this very difficult and emotional time.

"I would like to appeal to people who have come to Sandwich to join the search - if you continue overnight please make sure your own life isn’t placed at risk."

A Coastguard helicopter has joined the search in Sandwich, Kent. Credit: PA

"We have issued some safety advice about keeping clear of the river’s edge, staying on the main tracks, working in groups and never alone, and please make sure you are equipped with a phone and torches," he continued.

A number of different waterways, including the main river, make up the search area.