Brave officers honoured to meet HRH The Countess of Wessex

13 July 2017

HRH Countess of Essex meets bravery nominees

Officers nominated for Police Bravery Awards have been thrilled to meet HRH The Countess of Wessex.

Accompanied by the chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales, Steve White, Home Secretary Amber Rudd and Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Cressida Dick The Countess greeted a selection of the nominees at the event in London ahead of the award ceremony.

Among the officers to meet with the distinguished guests was Melanie Earnshaw from Gloucestershire, who has been nominated for an award after preventing a woman from setting herself on fire.

She said: “The whole experience is just surreal. Being here alone is amazing enough, but to be able to meet Her Royal Highness and the Home Secretary in person makes you feel worthwhile and gives you the boost that you need to keep doing the job in hard times.

“HRH was genuinely interested in my story, and seemed really pleased to be celebrating with us. It’s a very significant moment in my career.”

PC Earnshaw and the other 70 nominees for the 2017 Police Bravery Awards had earlier enjoyed a reception at 10 Downing Street with the Prime Minister.

The Gloucestershire officer added: “It’s been absolutely wonderful, I feel very lucky and I have some fantastic memories to take home.”

Lancashire’s Ben Barnes was also among the officers to meet the special guests.

He has been nominated after saving a woman from a violent attacker in a domestic incident.

He said: “It was very good to speak to them. It was a very, very humbling experience to meet royalty.

"You don’t expect to come where I come from and get to go down to London to meet royalty and members of Parliament. It’s been an amazing day, thanks to the Federation for organising it, it’s been absolutely superb.”