A search operation has been called off for the night for five people missing in the Irish Sea after a cargo ship sank in high winds, 10 miles off the coast of north Wales overnight.

Earlier, the Waterford-based Irish Coastguard helicopter recovered a body from the Irish Sea off Holyhead.

Waterford and Dublin-based helicopters were assisting in the search for survivors of the Swanland cargo ship, which sank in the early hours of this morning.

Two crew members were taken from the water around two hours after the alarm was raised at 2am.

British officials said the RAF helicopter which carried out the rescue was co-piloted by Britain's Prince William.

The Swanland, which had a Russian crew, went down approximately 80km southeast of Dublin, off Wales' Bardsey Island.

The two crew members were found at around 4am and winched aboard a rescue helicopter before being taken to a RAF base in Anglesey.

A coastguard official said the 81-metre cargo carrier was carrying 3,000 tonnes of limestone and it appears its hull cracked.

An Air Corps CASA Maritime Surveillance aircraft has also joined the search operation.