It started as a ‘rubbish’ August bank holiday Monday for Lesley Seed when she accidentally disposed of her mobile phone into her rubbish bin.
By the time the mistake was realised the bin had already been emptied and the contents were in the back of a bin lorry, on its way to the disposal site at Lower Compton near Calne.
Lesley said: “I was distraught as my mobile phone contained all my family photographs. Luckily I had installed an app on my phone which helps to locate it.
"We called the Lower Compton site and the helpful staff there were able to isolate the area where the bin lorry had tipped its load and we set off to begin the search.”
Lesley, accompanied by her husband Jonathon and their daughter Libby were met at Lower Compton by Dave Smith, landfill site foreman for Hills Waste Solutions, who provided them with protective clothing before the Seeds together with Dave, his team and the help of a digger machine began looking for the phone.
Jonathon said: “We had a pretty good fix on the location and eventually made the phone emit a loud noise which led us to it – all it had was a cracked screen.”
Dave said: “The fact that Mrs Seed called us so quickly once she realised the phone had gone missing enabled us to identify the lorry and the area where the load of rubbish had been tipped.
“If it was any later, there is a good chance that the phone would have been on its way to either Slough or Westbury where Wiltshire’s waste is sent for conversion into electricity or fuel for energy.”