POLICE are appealing for information to help find a 44-year-old man who has not been seen since Friday.

John Francis was seen walking along the A352 at East Stoke carrying two large rucksacks at 3.30pm on Friday afternoon.

A spokesman from Dorset Police said officers gave him a lift to Wool for his own safety as the road was considered dangerous for pedestrians.

A member of the public found two large rucksacks at a bus stop in Winfrith at 7pm yesterday, which are believed to belong to Mr Francis. It is thought they had been there for most of the day.

Inspector Matt Baxter, of Dorset police, said: “We are becoming increasingly concerned for the welfare of John. The rucksacks contained a lot of his personal possessions, which he would need with him. It is now believed that he might not be feeling very well.

“An empty tent bag was found in the rucksacks so it may be possible that John camped nearby and then continued walking, leaving his possessions behind.

“An extensive search has been carried out, which was assisted by the NPAS helicopter, and officers are continuing with their enquiries.”

John is described as white, approximately six feet tall and very slim.

He has short black greying hair, green eyes and was clean shaven when he was last seen. He has a deep voice and speaks with a local accent.

It is believed he is wearing blue jeans.

Inspector Baxter continued: “I appeal to anyone with information to come forward urgently.

“John’s family are very worried and urge him to make contact with them or the police – we just want to make sure he is safe and well.”

Anyone with information or knowledge as to John’s whereabouts should call Dorset Police on 101 quoting incident number 26:397.