London, Aug 22 : A Scottish man, who threw a message in the bottle into the sea when he was 11 years old, has reunited with it - 23 years later.
Donald Wylie, now aged 33, had thrown the bottle into the sea off Orkney in 1985 with a message asking its finder to pass it onto a boy of similar age.
The bottle was discovered by a team of volunteers cleaning up a beach at West Sands in St Andrews.
The group, which included students and staff from the University of St Andrews, were startled to find the message inside, and launched a search for the sender, which took them to Wylie still living in Orkney and working as a house builder.
He confirmed he was the sender and was invited to St Andrews to collect the bottle and see for himself where it eventually surfaced.
Wylie recalled how his mother encouraged him to throw hundreds of bottles into the sea off Sandside beach at Deerness, a tradition she continues at the same beach with her grandchildren.
"Over the years I've had a few replies, usually from Norway or Denmark, but never one from St Andrews and never one that's taken this long to wash up," the Telegraph quoted him, as saying.
"The message in a bottle was really quite a find and surprised us all, and we're delighted to be able to reunite the owner with this piece of history," said Roddy Yarr, environment and energy manager for the University of St Andrews.
"It really is quite remarkable that the bottle should be found after all this time - who knows where it has travelled to in the last quarter of a century," he added.