A man in his 50s has died after getting into difficulties while swimming in west Cork this afternoon.

He was among a group of local swimmers in Lough Hyne, near Skibbereen when it is understood he suffered a heart attack while in the water at around 12.30pm this afternoon.

The local swimming group acted swiftly and employed the use of a defibrillator which had been installed at the main pier a number of years ago.

Gardaí, members of Skibbereen Fire Service and the Irish Coastguard as well as the Irish Air Community Ambulance all attended the scene.

Paramedics carried out CPR but unfortunately the swimmer was pronounced dead a short time later despite all their efforts.

The man was well known locally, a businessman and a keen swimmer who swam regularly in Lough Hyne with a local swimming group.

His body has since been removed to Cork University Hospital where a post-mortem examination will be carried out and a file prepared by gardaí for the Coroner's Court.