1. ITV Report

Memorial service for lost Blackpool PCs

Three police officers (l to r) Colin Morrison, Angela Bradley and Gordon Connolly, who died trying rescue a man from the sea at Blackpool Photo: PA/PA Archive/Press Association Images

A memorial service will be held today to mark the 30th anniversary of the deaths of three Lancashire Police Officers who lost their lives in the line of duty.

PCs Colin Morrison, Gordon Connolly and Angela Bradley died as they tried to rescue a tourist who had got into trouble in the Irish Sea.

The loss of their lives has been described as one of the “darkest days in the force’s history”.

Alistair Anthony, 25, also lost his life. He was visiting the resort and had gone into the sea to rescue his dog on January 5, 1983.

Chief Superintendent Richard Debicki said: “That tragic day in 1983 was one of thedarkest in the history of Lancashire Constabulary.

“Three officers arrived for duty in the morning but never returned to their families.

“They died trying to save a man that they did not know, which is the epitome of public service.”

The service will be held in Gynn Square at 1pm today, near to the spot where the officers entered the water.

Ch Supt Debicki added: “We are very proud of their brave actions and we will always remember them.

“Inspite of their selfless acts, tragically four people lost their lives that day. We also remember a member of the public, Alistair Anthony, who tragically diedduring the incident.

“This should serve as poignant reminder of the dangers of the sea, which still continues to claim lives to this day."

Lancashire Police still hands out bravery awards in the dead officers’ memories and has named rooms after them at police stations.

“We will continue to remember those who lost their lives that day, and feel a great sense of honour and pride in being able to hold this special service.

“Those officers are etched in the history of the Constabulary,” Ch Supt Debicki said.