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Police bravery awards presented to members of the public

Author: 
John Freeman


Pictured (left to right): Lancaster’s mayoress Christine Wade, Chief Supt Tracey Launder, Robin Smethurst, Lancaster’s mayor Coun Tony Wade, Jack Ferguson, Lucinda Wannop and Clare Lyden. Photo courtesy Lancashire Constabulary


Four members of the public in the Lancaster and Morecambe area have been presented with police bravery awards to honour their courageous actions during the special ceremony held at Lancaster town hall.

Northern Division’s Chief Superintendent Tracey Launder praised all four for "going above and beyond" in their endeavours to help others in dangerous and difficult situations.

Robin Smethurst, from Lancaster, had been cycling along the city’s canal path on 12th August 2009 when he saw John O’Connor collapse and fall into the water. Robin jumped into the canal fully clothed and pulled Mr Connor to safety, before calling the emergency services.

Robin was presented with the Liverpool Shipwreck & Humane Society Award, which is given to those who voluntarily put their own lives or safety at risk by saving those who are in danger of drowning.

Clare Lyden, from Lancaster, Lucinda Wannop, from Overton, and Jack Ferguson, from Hestbank, Morecambe, were all presented with Lancashire Constabulary commendations for their courageous and selfless actions at the scene of a fatal road traffic accident.

All three stopped to help following the accident on 12th October, 2009, when13-year-old Dean Wilkinson was involved in a collision with a double decker bus on Slyne Road.

Both Lucinda and Jack placed themselves beneath the bus in order to comfort Dean, with Jack relaying information to the emergency services and Lucinda then going to assist in keeping other people at the scene safe. Clare offered reassurance to Dean’s 10-year-old friend before also going to Dean’s aid.

Speaking after the presentation, Chief Supt Launder said: “All four people went above and beyond the normal actions we see from the public when incidents like these unfortunately occur.

"Robin’s quick thinking at the canal prevented a tragedy from happening and I am sure the man he rescued is very grateful.

"Clare, Lucinda and Jack did everything they could at the scene of the road accident and I know that their caring actions have offered some comfort to Dean’s family.”
 
"Members of the public do not have the resources or the support that the emergency services have, so when they come to the aid of those in need it is a very brave and honourable thing," she added, "and it is important that we recognise that."
 
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