From river rescues to risking their lives in quick sand - read the heroic tales of the police - and civilian - heroes recognised for their bravery.

Shining examples of heroism in the line of police duty have been recognised at an awards ceremony in Barnstaple.

More than 80 members of the North and West Devon Local Policing Area (LPA) – as well as ordinary members of the public – were honoured by Superintendent Michele Slevin in the guildhall on Wednesday night.

Supt Slevin, who announced that she is set to retire after three years as area commander at the end of the month, said: “These examples are just the pinnacle of everything we do day in and day out to deliver a great service to the public.”

Mud rescue

Among the recipients was Sergeant Mike Warriner, awarded the Commander's Certificate, who saved two distressed women who were stuck in mud near Crow Point.

Using the throw line from his vehicle, Sgt Warriner waded into the mud and rescued the women, who would have been fully submerged by the incoming tide by the time the supporting mud rescue teams arrived at scene.

Life saver

PC Andy Bennett and member of the public Neil Pearce were awarded the Superintendent's Certificate after helping to save the life of a man injured in a motorcycle accident at Hiscott, near Barnstaple in May last year.

The pair made a makeshift tourniquet using a dog lead to stem the flow of blood to help stabilise the casualty before paramedics arrived.

River rescue

PCs Sarah Anderson, Simon Ogden and Jason Chubb were awarded the Commander's Certificate after rescuing an elderly man who had fallen 30 feet into free flowing water from Barnstaple Longbridge in April last year.

PC Ogden waded out into the hazardous tide and managed to secure a tow line to the casualty, who was then guided to PC Anderson and Chubb on the river bank.

PC Sarah Anderson also received Response Officer of the Year, hailed as a 'hard working and conscientious' member of the team based in Pilton.

Bridge jumper

Also awarded the Commander's Certificate were PCs Chris Spence, Paul Butler, Mark Fairchild, Louise Timmins and Richard Irwin, whose professionalism and team work prevented a distressed man from jumping off the Torridge Bridge near Bideford in November last year.

The first officers on scene quickly establishing a dialogue with the male who wouldn't let officers anywhere near him, and continually threatened to jump with one leg over the barrier.

They showed initiative in tense stand-off to create a distraction while officers PCs Butler and Fairchild to silently approach the man from behind and detain him.

Missing man

PC Richard Irwin – along with police dog Archie - was also awarded the Commander's Certificate for outstanding good work.

Following a collision, PC Irwin and Archie tracked down a missing person who had been wandering hopelessly in a dark, rural area with an injury for seven hours.

Tracking down and apprehending a suspect who broke into a house and stole a laptop also saw PC Chris Carter and dog Maverick earn a Commanders Certificate.

Diversity award

Members of the public Kharun Shah was awarded the Good Citizen Award for working with police to educate children in diversity.

She has also been key in keeping North Devon's fourth annual Diversity Festival alive.