Mum dives in to river to rescue son from fast-flowing water at Moors Valley

Bournemouth Echo: Sue Read and son Connor Sue Read and son Connor

A MOTHER dived into a river to rescue her son from being swept away by rapidly-moving currents in Moors Valley Country Park.

Sue Read, 39, from Verwood, took her two children, Connor and Olivia, to the beauty spot with friends Hannah and Steve Seabright, and their daughter, Jane.

However, the group outing took a disastrous turn when 11-year-old Connor, who has severe learning difficulties, slipped into the water.

The legal secretary said panic gripped the group as Connor struggled to stay afloat in the five-foot-deep water and they desperately tried to reach him from the riverbank.

“His head was bobbing up and down in the water and he was being taken away by the current,” said Sue.

“I knew that if I didn’t go in straight away we would lose him.”

Sue said she was not conscious of the cold when she jumped in and managed to grip the hood on her son’s coat to drag him to safety.

“We just collapsed on the bank.

“He was very frightened,” she added.

Drenched and freezing cold, it took 30 minutes for the group to get back to their car before drying off at home.

Hannah, 41, who calmed the children and kept them away from the edge of the river as Sue helped Connor, said the incident was traumatic and that she phoned the rangers’ office to suggest life belts and better signage should be installed.

Judith Plumley, head of community and leisure at East Dorset District Council, said the country park provides a natural environment and that they rely on people to be responsible for themselves and those they care for. She added: “As part of the risk assessment for the park it has been considered that life rings or throw lines are not necessary as the likelihood of someone falling into the water is extremely low.”

Comments (14)

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11:15am Sat 22 Feb 14

The Cerne Giant says...

A very scary story with a very happy ending

Well done Mum
A very scary story with a very happy ending Well done Mum The Cerne Giant
  • Score: 21

11:30am Sat 22 Feb 14

scrumpyjack says...

Well done and all that but how did this make the 'news'?
Well done and all that but how did this make the 'news'? scrumpyjack
  • Score: -15

11:58am Sat 22 Feb 14

ShuttleX says...

Well done Sue. Glad you are both ok. Ignore the idiots on here who will analyse your brave move to the nth degree and tell you why it shouldn't have happened. The bottom line is it did happen, and you reacted. Good for you.
Well done Sue. Glad you are both ok. Ignore the idiots on here who will analyse your brave move to the nth degree and tell you why it shouldn't have happened. The bottom line is it did happen, and you reacted. Good for you. ShuttleX
  • Score: 26

12:26pm Sat 22 Feb 14

Vw lover says...

Glad they are both safe :)
Glad they are both safe :) Vw lover
  • Score: 17

1:10pm Sat 22 Feb 14

kalebmoledirt says...

What a combination pretty and brave well done
What a combination pretty and brave well done kalebmoledirt
  • Score: -8

4:11pm Sat 22 Feb 14

60plus says...

Well done to her she done what any mum would do a bit silly to say life rings not needed as nobody falls in the river well that was wrong,
Well done to her she done what any mum would do a bit silly to say life rings not needed as nobody falls in the river well that was wrong, 60plus
  • Score: -1

6:59pm Sat 22 Feb 14

BoscombeWarLord says...

Well done on saving your son. Judith Plumley is clueless, this is the second such story in the space of 6 months. Rather than Plumley busying herself with the banal striped beach hut on Avon beach, maybe she could be proactive and provide a few additional safety measures at Moors Valley. Possibly saving someones life and saving the tax payer a huge compensation payout when the council's negligence is exposed in any future claims. Hopefully the third such incident won't prove fatal.
http://www.bournemou
thecho.co.uk/news/10
700004.Disabled_man_
plunges_into_river_a
t_Moors_Valley_after
_wheelchair_slides_d
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Well done on saving your son. Judith Plumley is clueless, this is the second such story in the space of 6 months. Rather than Plumley busying herself with the banal striped beach hut on Avon beach, maybe she could be proactive and provide a few additional safety measures at Moors Valley. Possibly saving someones life and saving the tax payer a huge compensation payout when the council's negligence is exposed in any future claims. Hopefully the third such incident won't prove fatal. http://www.bournemou thecho.co.uk/news/10 700004.Disabled_man_ plunges_into_river_a t_Moors_Valley_after _wheelchair_slides_d own_path/ BoscombeWarLord
  • Score: 5

7:07pm Sat 22 Feb 14

MikeGB says...

scrumpyjack wrote:
Well done and all that but how did this make the 'news'?
Typical comment, I have to say I wonder why you bother to write anything here at all, nothing you say is ever of any interest! maybe you just like thumbs down. Maybe you are aiming for some record?
[quote][p][bold]scrumpyjack[/bold] wrote: Well done and all that but how did this make the 'news'?[/p][/quote]Typical comment, I have to say I wonder why you bother to write anything here at all, nothing you say is ever of any interest! maybe you just like thumbs down. Maybe you are aiming for some record? MikeGB
  • Score: -5

9:03pm Sat 22 Feb 14

spooki says...

I can see how people can say "don't let your kids near the river" as I would be the same but let's remember it's been very wet out and perhaps he just slipped on some mud?
I can see how people can say "don't let your kids near the river" as I would be the same but let's remember it's been very wet out and perhaps he just slipped on some mud? spooki
  • Score: 1

9:14pm Sat 22 Feb 14

baldrick12 says...

It is a shame that people feel the need to criticise and make negative comments. Accidents can and do happen to any of us parents no matter how much "common sense "they have.
I wonder how many people writing or thinking such negativity have actual experience of caring for a child with severe learning difficulties? Anyone that does would understand the constant mental and physical challenge to maintain a normal everyday life. Even the simple things, such as a family walk like the circumstances here can be extremely difficult to achieve.
A big well done to mum is what I say, and thank goodness they are both ok, surely that is the main point here?
Whether the park is responsible or not, I think the council's comment show's a distinct lack of care and compassion.
It is a shame that people feel the need to criticise and make negative comments. Accidents can and do happen to any of us parents no matter how much "common sense "they have. I wonder how many people writing or thinking such negativity have actual experience of caring for a child with severe learning difficulties? Anyone that does would understand the constant mental and physical challenge to maintain a normal everyday life. Even the simple things, such as a family walk like the circumstances here can be extremely difficult to achieve. A big well done to mum is what I say, and thank goodness they are both ok, surely that is the main point here? Whether the park is responsible or not, I think the council's comment show's a distinct lack of care and compassion. baldrick12
  • Score: 11

4:40am Sun 23 Feb 14

Old Boscombe Lad says...

That Mum should have been given a medal or at least a commendation for her bravery. Whether she rescued her own child or someone else's certainly deserves some kind of recognition. What she did is typical of a mother's instinct. I'm glad they both made it to shore ok.
That Mum should have been given a medal or at least a commendation for her bravery. Whether she rescued her own child or someone else's certainly deserves some kind of recognition. What she did is typical of a mother's instinct. I'm glad they both made it to shore ok. Old Boscombe Lad
  • Score: -1

12:50pm Sun 23 Feb 14

wilkiemini says...

I fail to see why moors valley should change anything .....it's a nature reserve
It's totally up to us to teach our kids to stay away from water ....would you expect to see every inch of a river covered in signs and life belts errr no!

A scary incident for them I am sure......and I am glad they are both fine but this is nobody's fault but their own!
I fail to see why moors valley should change anything .....it's a nature reserve It's totally up to us to teach our kids to stay away from water ....would you expect to see every inch of a river covered in signs and life belts errr no! A scary incident for them I am sure......and I am glad they are both fine but this is nobody's fault but their own! wilkiemini
  • Score: 13

4:36pm Sun 23 Feb 14

jeebuscripes says...

How did the Echo hear about this story?
How did the Echo hear about this story? jeebuscripes
  • Score: 6

6:55pm Sun 23 Feb 14

GeorgeW64 says...

Did we really need to know he has learning difficulties ? was this the reason he decided to fall in the river and nearly drown ?

Anyway well done mum and son.
Did we really need to know he has learning difficulties ? was this the reason he decided to fall in the river and nearly drown ? Anyway well done mum and son. GeorgeW64
  • Score: -2

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