Police officer wins Pride of Britain award

PC Sara Riddrington Credit: North Yorkshire Police

A North Yorkshire Police officer has won a Pride of Britain Award for disarming a man trying to rob a supermarket while she was off duty.

PC Sara Widdrington, who is based in Scarborough, won the Emergency Services Award at the ceremony in London.

The 47-year-old was with her son at one of the checkouts in Tesco when she noticed a man brandishing a black pistol and pointing it towards the cashier who was serving her.

The terrified cashier ran away, but PC Widdrington feared for the safety of other customers and knew she had to act.

She ran around the checkout area and grabbed the man's left hand, which was holding the pistol, managing to lower his arm so the gun was now pointing at the floor.

The police officer then asked the man to drop the gun, but he replied: 'No get off, it's loaded.'

As PC Widdrington held the man's arm, she could tell the gun was heavier than a 'BB' gun and told her son to leave the shop.

She then kicked the man's legs away, knocking him to the floor and restraining him until police arrived at the store in Scarborough.

I am so thrilled, delighted and surprised to have been chosen for this award. There are so many other acts of bravery and courage going on every day across the UK, be that in the emergency services or by members of the public. I am very humbled that mine has been acknowledged in this way.

PC Sara Widdrington

We are thrilled for Sara and the fact that her bravery has been acknowledged in this way. Sara is an inspiration to everyone and her actions on that day are indicative of the many situations that police officers and staff face every day across the UK. She is a credit to North Yorkshire Police and thoroughly deserves her award.

Chief Constable Dave Jones