Two North Ayrshire police officers have received bravery and excellence awards from Police Scotland's chief constable after rescuing a woman from the sea.

Constable Craig Hannah, 29, and a colleague attended a report of a vulnerable woman, who stated she was in pain in the sea at Saltcoats in December 2022.

Observing the woman in the sea up to her neck, the officers entered the water.

Due to conditions underfoot and the woman wearing a dressing gown, it was extremely difficult to pull her to shore.

The courageous and decisive actions of the officers ensured the woman was removed from the water and she received the care and assistance required.

Craig and the second officer - who chose not to be identified - received their awards on Friday, February 24 at the Police Scotland headquarters in Tulliallan, near Kincardine, alongside other brave officers and members of the public who risked their lives to save someone.

Chief Constable Jo Farrell said: “These awards shine a light on the great value policing brings to communities: keeping people safe from harm, protecting the vulnerable, bringing criminals to justice, solving problems and reducing offending.

“I want to thank and congratulate all the winners and nominees, including members of the public. Their inspiring work and brave actions illustrate how policing stands up for and with our communities.”

Scotland's justice secretary Angela Constance added:  “Scotland’s police officers and staff go above and beyond every day to serve our communities. What might seem ordinary for them is, in reality, often extraordinary and I am grateful to each and every one of them.

“These awards rightly recognise the bravery and excellence shown by police officers and staff, and by volunteers and members of the public across the country.

"I would like to congratulate all the nominees and award-winners – their stories are truly inspiring.”

Kerry McMahon-White, head of partnerships at Police Mutual, who sponsored the awards, said: "All nominees are an inspiration and a credit to the service and I, and all my colleagues, would like to offer my thanks to those who were nominated for your achievements as well as congratulations to the winners.”