Derbyshire fall victim, 90, praises kindness of strangers who rallied to his rescue

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An elderly man has praised the kindness of strangers who came to his rescue when he fell in a Derbyshire town.

Peter South who lives at Lea Bridge near Matlock suffered cuts to his nose and forehead and a black eye when he took a tumble in Belper.

He said: “I haven't had a fall like that ever before – I’m fairly robust for 90, but it’s dinted my confidence.”

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But he was keen to share his experience of how he was helped in his time of need. He said: “Thanks to the people of Belper, it was an amazing story.”

Peter suffered cuts on his nose, a laceration on his forehead and a black eye when he fell in Belper.Peter suffered cuts on his nose, a laceration on his forehead and a black eye when he fell in Belper.
Peter suffered cuts on his nose, a laceration on his forehead and a black eye when he fell in Belper.

Peter’s ordeal happened when he had half an hour to spare between two dental appointments. He decided to buy his wife a bunch of roses at Fleur on King Street and realised he only had 10 minutes to get back to the dentist’s so he started to hurry. He said: “I tripped over the pavement, fell flat on my face into the road right outside the card shop. Immediately four people gathered round and helped me to my feet. I felt very foolish.

"Jake came out of the card shop, saying he was a paramedic and would help me. I had two cuts on the bridge of my nose and a lacerated forehead. He dabbed me with antiseptic and applied plasters.

"As I had fallen on my flowers they were rather crushed, and a young blonde lady appeared and kindly presented me with a bunch of eight new yellow roses out of the goodness of her heart. I thanked her profusely – but never saw her again. I’ve tried to find out who she was.”

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Peter was concerned that he would be late for his dental appointment so a woman offered to run up to the surgery and let them know what had happened. A second woman then volunteered to accompany him to the dentist. He said: “As we neared the top of the road, three ladies appeared – the one who had run up to say I would be late and two paramedics from the surgery. So I had an escort of four ladies into the building."

How Peter looked before his fall.How Peter looked before his fall.
How Peter looked before his fall.

The dentist offered to postpone the appointment but Peter wanted to see it through. Peter said: “He replaced my old filling whilst dabbing my nose at the same time to stop the blood.”

After the appointment one of the receptionists ran over to the car park where Peter had parked and put more money in the meter. Another receptionist noticed that his glasses had been bent and took them down the road to Specsavers to have them straightened.

Meanwhile, a phone call to Peter’s wife Rosemary alerted her to his predicament. Rosemary got a lift with a neighbour, collected her husband and drove them back home in their car.

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Peter said: “People kept telling me that I should have the severe cuts on my nose stitched but I didn’t bother. Rosemary put a plaster on my nose until it eventually got better. I was so lucky not to break anything.

“I’ve been back both to the card shop and the dentist and taken them a big box of chocolates because they were so good to me. Mostly you hear bad news in the world today, this is undiminished good news.”

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