A missing plaque remembering those affected by the Windscale fire in 1957 has mysteriously been found.

It was believed to have been lost after both Sellafield Ltd and members of CORE (Cumbrians Opposed to a Radioactive Environment) had been unable to locate it.

However it was found today by Martin Forwood, of CORE, who was with other members of the group laying flowers to commemorate the anniversary.

The plaque, which was mounted on a concrete slate, was discovered lying at an angle in grass along a road near to the old "golf ball" reactor.

Both CORE and Sellafield had believed it was missing after it was removed for work carried out on the site's perimeter fence.

It had been laid at the fence near to the Windscales Piles on the 30th anniversary of the disaster.

Mr Forwood was surprised and pleased to have discovered the plaque which had been co-funded by Greenpeace and public donations.

He said: "I looked in August but could not see it. It is very weird. There must be magic in the air!

"I am lost for words in terms of an explanation for the re-emergence of the plaque. Suffice to say, we’re delighted to see it again and happy to have laid our flowers on it.

"The plaque needs some TLC and whilst we do plan to ask Sellafield Ltd if the plaque can be re-positioned and more permanently fixed nearer the fence – rather than somewhat haphazardly placed in the grass verge - we are grateful for the company’s recent efforts."

A spokesman for Sellafield said: "We’re delighted it’s turned up.''