Accident ruling on Ludlow girl, 2, found dead in Spanish swimming pool

A two-year-old girl from Shropshire found dead in a swimming pool while holidaying in Spain had been told by her parents not to get in without her ‘water wings’, an inquest heard.

San Miguel de Salinas
San Miguel de Salinas

South Shropshire deputy coroner Andrew Barkley described the drowning of Isabella May Crump from Ludlow as a “tragedy” and told her devastated parents they would probably never know how she came to be in the water.

An inquest at Bridgnorth council chamber yesterday heard the toddler, known as Izzy, had been on holiday with her parents Deborah Ridgeway and Patrick Crump and her older sister.

The family flew out for a week-long holiday in August last year to stay with Miss Ridgeway’s grandparents, Arthur and Thelma Keeley, who owned a villa in San Miguel de Salinas, near Torrevieja, Alicante.

The hearing heard the family had spent most of August 8, the day before they were due to return home, in the 25ft villa swimming pool basking in 39C (102F) heat.

After they all got out Mr Crump, 38, said he and his eldest daughter went inside to watch television while Izzy got on a sun lounger outside for a ‘cuddle’ with Miss Ridgeway.

He said: “The programme we were watching had finished and I said to my daughter ‘right, we need to go and get changed for tea. I will go and see what Debs and Izzy are doing’.

“I went outside and saw Debs on the sun lounger, facing away from the water, and Izzy in the pool.”

Mr Crump dived in to pull the toddler out but despite frantic efforts to resuscitate her.

“Izzy knew she was not supposed to go into the pool without her water wings (armbands),” Mr Crump added.

Miss Ridgeway, 27, said: “Both of them were told not to go near the pool unless either me or Pat was with them and they were wearing armbands. Izzy would even say it back to me.”

Deputy coroner Mr Barkley, recording a verdict of accidental death, said: “Clearly she was playing in and around the pool, and appeared to understand she was not allowed in the pool without at least one of her parents or without armbands.

“Exactly how it was she ended up in the pool will, I regret to say, never be known.”