Retired and serving police officers in Blackpool have paid their respects to three colleagues who drowned in the sea – 32 years on from the tragedy which rocked the resort.
Four red roses were cast into the sea at Gynn Square to remember the lives of a dog-walker who was swept into the sea and the three PCs who tried to save him.
That day, on January 5, 1983, which cost the lives of PCs Angela Bradley, Gordon Connolly and Colin Morrison, has been described as the darkest day in the history of Lancashire Police.
Alistair Anthony, from Glasgow, was walking his Jack Russell near Gynn Square when the dog entered the sea, chasing after a ball.
He was swept off his feet trying to rescue the dog.
Police officers at the scene tried in vain to rescue him, with three losing their own lives in the process.
They were joined in the water by PC Pat Abram who was overcome by the power of the tide and had to be rescued by a colleague.
He was resuscitated by a passing doctor, who is credited with saving his life.
Now-retired PC Abram was among those to pay their respects during an informal gathering at Gynn Square on Monday – exactly 32 years since the tragedy.
He placed a wreath in memory of his former colleagues, with a note that read: “The years may be passing us by, yet you remain in my thoughts every day.
“You will never be forgotten, Pat Abram.”
Also at the gathering was Hilary Morrison, widow of PC Morrison.
The gathering was held at the site of a memorial to the dead, featuring a statue that depicts the emergency services, which was installed in 2013, for the 30th anniversary of the incident.
By the statue, which represents the four emergency services and honours all the “unsung heroes” who have died doing their job, is a plaque that serves as a permanent tribute to the four people who died in the sea 32 years ago.