Woman reunited with diamond ring
A woman has been reunited with her diamond ring - two years after flushing it down the loo and hiring a waste firm to sift through sewage to find it.
After accidentally losing the ring, Joan Speirs paid the company to put a camera into the cesspit tank, reports the Daily Telegraph.
When that didn't work, the company filtered the 12,000 gallons of waste and even sent a worker into the tank with a metal detector, but to no avail.
But by an amazing co-incidence, an employee from the same small family firm stumbled across the ring more than two years later at a sewage works.
Mrs Spiers, 67, Conservative leader of Reigate and Banstead Council, in Surrey, was at the Charlwood Hotel, near Gatwick, when she lost the antique ring which had been given to her by her late husband.
The company, which has just eight employees, was working on a contract to clear out a channel at the same works two and a half years later when worker Lloyd Hampshire saw the gem glinting through the muck.
Julie French, of Dorking-based waste disposal company Clear Master, said: "He took it in the shower with him to rinse it off and brought it into the office.
"My husband was the only person who had seen the original photo of the lost ring and recognised it immediately. Two of the smaller diamonds had fallen out but apart from that, it was just in need of a good clean.
"We verified it was the same ring then handed it over to Coun Spiers, who was emotional to say the least. She had completely given up any hope of seeing it again.
"It gave us all a warm feeling because we knew how much it meant to her. She has had it professionally cleaned, because of where it had been for so long, and is keeping it in a much safer place now."