Underwater metal detectorist George Edmunds, 75, recovered the ring from the seabed just six days after it had slipped off Katie Patterson’s finger as she swam off the beach at La Playa Des Illetes.
Patterson, 23, had lost the Victorian platinum ring set with diamonds, left to her by her grandmother, on 12 July, during a short break on the island.
A two-hour search with the help of German snorkellers failed to recover the heirloom, and she returned home to Newcastle-under-Lyme. However, reportedly inspired by the TV comedy series Detectorists, she eventually contacted 75-year-old Edmunds of Weymouth, a scuba diver since the late 1950s and an underwater detectorist for the past 30 years.
“Everyone had been pessimistic but George seemed surprisingly confident and told me he would get it back,” the Keele student told the Express. She paid £1000 from saved waitressing tips to fly him with his partner to the Mediterranean island, travelling with them to help pinpoint the spot where she had lost the ring.
Using a snorkel and the White’s Surf II metal detector he has used for 20 years, Edmunds quickly found the missing jewellery buried – along with a number of euros – 7cm deep in sand on the shallow seabed. He waived his fee.
* Another woman was fortunate to recover submerged jewellery in July when Avon & Somerset police-divers recovered her silver solitaire engagement ring, dropped while she had been rowing in Bristol harbour a fortnight before.
After Nicola Hazell informed the harbourmaster of her loss he challenged the dive-team, who were on a training exercise, to find the ring.
“We were here training anyway and we spend a lot of time looking for stolen property and other items, so it was a good challenge,” dive-team leader Nick Evans told the BBC.
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