PCSO bravery award for saving toddler’s life

PCSO Beccy Walker receives her award from Chief Supt Chris Bithell
PCSO Beccy Walker receives her award from Chief Supt Chris Bithell

A courageous officer has been commended with a police bravery award for saving the life of a toddler who had fallen into a canal.

Police Community Support Officer Beccy Walker was awarded the Roland Gee McGowan Trophy for bravery following her courageous actions during the terrifying incident last year.

PCSO Walker and colleague PCSO Kirsty Shepherd received a call on April 15th from a distressed mother stating her two-year-old son had run off and had been last seen in Colne Road, Burnley.

The pair made their way to Pit Top Park, bordering Pheasant Ford Green, and on searching the area, PCSO Walker found the boy in the canal, face down.

She immediately dived into the canal despite the deep water and silt making it difficult for her to get a foothold.

PCSO Walker said: “I am really thankful to have been given this award, but I must also say it was a team effort between myself and my colleagues that meant the little boy was saved.

“I am just glad I managed to get him out of the water, and he survived such a dangerous incident.”

PCSO Walker had pulled the boy to the side where colleagues, PC Vicky Malley, PCSO Shepherd, and PCs Duncan Hall, Malley, Rubina Akoo and Alan Brown helped until ambulance assistance arrived.

The child was taken from the area by air ambulance to Royal Blackburn Hospital in a critical condition, but was later transferred to Manchester Children’s Hospital, where he made a full recovery.

East Division Commander, Chief Supt Chris Bithell presented the award at a special ceremony at Burnley Police Station.

He said: “This award is very special given that it hasn’t been given out since 1997, but more so because it is named after one of our officers who tragically lost his life while attending an incident.

“Beccy is a deserving recipient of the trophy and I thoroughly commend her courage.”