Two police officers who ran into the sea in near complete darkness two years ago to save the life of a woman in mental health crisis have been honoured at a delayed national Police Bravery Awards.

PC Ian Chattun and Sgt Katy Evans risked their own safety when they responded to a call that a woman was threatening to harm herself at 2.30am on Sunday, 18 August 2019.

The officers found the woman, who had a recent history of self-harm, in the North Beach area of Aberystwyth.

She had been submerged in the sea but had been pulled from the water by her friends and was sitting on the breakwater.

The officers attempted to talk to her to calm her down but she became distressed and ran back into the sea.

The woman began to struggle as she got deeper into the water and the officers thought her life was in immediate danger.

They entered the water in full uniform, including PPE and body armour, but she was swept further out to sea.

In their attempts to rescue her the officers were submerged in the water.

Sgt Evans activated her emergency button to summon further units.

Her attempts to ask for assistance were compounded by the waves breaking over her head as she tried to update her situation.

PC Chattun swam to help the woman and with Sgt Evans and two of the woman’s friends, brought her back to shore.

Paramedics attended the scene and took the woman to hospital.

Roger Webb, secretary of Dyfed-Powys Police Federation, which put the officers forward for the bravery awards, said: “This was a selfless act of bravery by both police officers, as well as members of the public who undoubtedly saved a vulnerable young person’s life.

“The officers had no regard for their own personal safety and entered the water to save the life of a stranger in need.

“Body-worn video recordings of the incident have been viewed and the actions of the officers in the water is simply outstanding.

“They each reflect the true values of a police officer and have put themselves at great risk.

“Rather than see an event unfold and take no action, the officers have reacted quickly and saved a life.”

Pc Chattun and Sgt Evans have already been honoured by Dyfed-Powys Police for their actions that day, with both handed the force’s Bravery Award last year for showing “extraordinary and selfless bravery in making the split-second decision to enter the water”.

The pair were nominated for the Dyfed-Powys award by Sgt David Hawksworth who said “there is no doubt that if they had they not reacted instantly - placing themselves at serious risk of drowning - then this young woman would have been lost in the darkness and swept out to sea”.

The Police Bravery Awards ceremony was due to be held in London in July last year but was postponed due to the pandemic.

It was restaged this year on Tuesday, 12 October with 94 officers from England and Wales up for awards.