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50 years ago: 14-year-old hero saves toddler from drowning at Eccles baths

We found a rather heartwarming story from the pages of the Eccles and Patricroft Journal from January 1965 which told how one mother’s darkest fear almost came true when she paid a routine visit to Eccles Public baths on Cromwell Road.

Mrs Mary Theresa Greene, 29, of Gleaves Road, Eccles had taken her four children, aged seven, five, four and two on a day out to the the swimming baths to encourage her children to learn to swim.

The family entered the three foot deep end of the main baths with all the children wearing life belts as a safety precaution.

The baths was packed to full capacity at the time, with roughly 90-100 people in the pool, mainly children.

Mrs Greene got out of the pool after a while and took her two youngest children, David, 4, and Paul, 2, to the showers, she placed Paul under the shower for a few minutes but to her horror she realised that David had wandered off.

As she went looking for him she saw David being lifted out of the three foot end by David Jordan, 14, who lived at Somerset Road, Ellesmere Park, Eccles.

David had seen the boy in the water, floating on his back with his mouth open about six feet from the side of the pool and about 10 feet from the steps leading into the pool.

He jumped into the water and swam over to the unconcious toddler and picked him out of the pool.

Acting swiftly, he carried the young boy to the far end of the pool and shouted to the baths attendants for help, who carried out resucitation on him.

The four-year-old was revived and taken to hospital where he made a good recovery.

For his act of outstanding bravery David Jordan was invited to the Eccles Town Hall and presented with the Liverpool Shipwreck and Humane Society Award by the Mayor of Eccles, Mr Ken Edwards.

The citation read: “There is no doubt that the prompt and efficient action taken by David Jordan in removing the boy from the water saved the child’s life.”

We wonder if David Jordan is still living local and has his bravery certificate – also does young David Greene still live locally and does he remember this incident?

If so we would love to hear from you both and possibly organise a reunion for the hero and a lucky young boy.

If you can help reunite this pair please email tonyflynn@salfordonline.com.

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SalfordOnline.com's Local History Editor and Senior Reporter.