Four police officers from Ayr have been celebrated for their bravery in entering a burning building and waking up sleeping residents.

PCs David Murdoch, Phoebe Pritchard, Michael Shields and Allan Wardrop entered a building on fire on Ayr High Street in May 2020.

The building was well alight and many residents were asleep due to the time of day.

Their courageous actions in the line of duty led to the rescue of many people and prevented any loss of life.

They were recognised for their intervention as part of the Chief Constable's Bravery and Excellence Awards, being held virtually due to the pandemic earlier today (Friday, February 19) with updates made via Twitter.

Chief Constable Iain Livingstone QPM presented 25 Bravery awards to 31 police officers and 16 members of the public in total.

Mr Livingstone said: “The last 12 months have underlined the relentless and challenging nature of policing. 

“Officers and staff are playing a crucial role supporting the national response to coronavirus. At the same time, they continue to meet the needs of our communities, providing day-to-day policing and responding to a number of demanding and high profile incidents.

“Today is an important opportunity to recognise and celebrate the outstanding policing which occurs all over Scotland, day in, day out, and to commend members of the public for the selfless acts of bravery and courage to help their fellow citizens.

“I extend my heartfelt congratulations to all our winners and nominees and thank them for their commitment to public service.

“I’m also grateful to Police Mutual for their continued support of this important event.”

Cabinet Secretary for Justice Humza Yousaf said: “The Bravery and Excellence Awards allow us to reflect on selfless acts of courage which have made a real difference to people at their greatest time of need and to recognise the innovative and high quality work by officers and staff from across the Service, the Scottish Police Authority and other partners. 

“I want to thank all the officers, staff and members of the public, who were nominated for awards, for their service and support in these challenging times.

“I have always been proud of the dedication shown by our police officers and police staff, to keep us all safe, and the current pandemic has highlighted that the police workforce is highly adaptable in its response to new challenges.”

Martyn Evans, Chair of the Scottish Police Authority, said: “Congratulations to all today’s winners and to those nominated for awards. These are truly extraordinary times but Police Scotland’s officers and staff continue to excel in challenging circumstances.

“Today’s awards ceremony gives us the opportunity to celebrate just a small number of examples of bravery and courage but we at the Authority acknowledge that examples like these are being carried out across Scotland on a daily basis as officers and staff work alongside partners and members of the public to keep Scotland’s communities safe.”