‘I can still picture little Mark at the bottom of the pool’ - appeal to find Norwich boy rescued from drowning 38 years ago

Phil Ridley who is trying trace a man who he rescued when he was 13 on holiday in France and the res

Phil Ridley who is trying trace a man who he rescued when he was 13 on holiday in France and the rescued person was 6 at the time. - Credit: Archant

It was a moment from his childhood that has stayed with him his entire life.

On holiday in northern France as a 13-year-old, Philip Ridley saved the life of a young boy who was drowning in a swimming pool.

Thirty-eight years on Mr Ridley has launched an appeal to find the individual involved.

The only clue he has to go on are is a newspaper clipping from the time, which named the boy as Mark Annett, six, who lived on Leopold Road, in Norwich.

Mr Ridley said: 'I can still picture little Mark at the bottom of the pool in an almost foetal position. His eyes were bulging and it was clear to me that things were not good.

'I had been messing around in the pool with my sister and I just pulled him out.

'His parents later wrote a lovely letter to my school and sent a gift to my family. Mark sent me an engraved tankard in 1978, but since then I have not heard from him. I often think how he is getting on.

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'If the circumstances were right, it would be lovely to catch up and see that he has done okay for himself.'

Mr Ridley, now aged 50 and living in Ipswich, was on holiday with his parents in Martragny, France, when the incident happened on September 1, 1978.

After noticing Mark was struggling in the water, he dived in and brought his unconscious body back to the surface.

A doctor who happened to be nearby then helped to revive him and he made a full recovery.

An article in the Oldham Chronicle, which reported the rescue, said Mr Annett's parents had been distracted by a passing aeroplane at the time.

Mr Ridley, who is originally from Oldham, received a Queen's Scout award for bravery for his actions.

The head of planning at Suffolk Coastal and Waveney Disctict Council added: 'I went to an all boy's school and I can still remember the letter from his parents being read out in front of everyone.

'After that all of the kids would drop down in front of me saying 'save me, save me'.'

Can you help with finding Mark Annett? Call Luke Powell on 01603 772684 or email luke.powell@archant.co.uk

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