Suffolk heroes saved woman dangling from bridge over busy A14

The brave pair held onto the woman as she dangled from a bridge over the A14. Pictuer: GOOGLEMAPS

The brave pair held onto the woman as she dangled from a bridge over the A14. Pictuer: GOOGLEMAPS - Credit: Archant

Two heroic women from Suffolk who saved the life of a suicidal woman dangling from a bridge over the A14 are to receive a top national award for their actions.

Lisa Barrell and Kate Mason had spotted a woman hanging from railings on the wrong side of the bridge near Needham Market on October 10 last year.

They rushed to her aid, grabbing her arms to prevent her letting go and crashing 25ft onto the busy double carriageway blow.

Police had already been alerted to the woman but the heroic pair had to cling to her for a gruelling 15 minutes until help finally arrived.

Now the pair are both to receive a Royal Human Society Certificate of Commendation for their selfless actions.

They have been praised for not only saving the life of the woman, but for preventing what could have been a major road accident should she have fallen onto the road below.

Mrs Barrell said: “We (myself and Mrs Mason) were both coming from different directions and we met in the middle of the bridge.

Most Read

“It was just fortunate we were there at the right time.

“It just felt like the right thing to do.

“We didn’t really have a plan, it was spontaneous and instant.

“It didn’t sink in what had happened until it had ended.

“We were bruised afterwards but at the time you just don’t think about it.

“I really didn’t expect to get an award for it.”

Andrew Chapman, secretary of the Royal Humane Society praised the pair as he announced the awards at the society’s London headquarters.

He said: “If the woman had fallen she would almost certainly have been killed by the fall alone.

“But with traffic on the main road the chances are that she would also have been hit by a vehicle and this could have caused a major accident.

“Lisa and Kate did a wonderful job hanging on to her for 15 minutes until help arrived.

“They must have been exhausted at the end of it but they didn’t give up.

“They richly deserve the award they are to receive.”

The roots of the Royal Humane Society stretch back more than two centuries.

The Queen is its patron and its president is Princess Alexandra.

It is the premier national body for honouring bravery in the saving of human life.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter