2016 was a record year for the Society with 560 awards made to people who have been instrumental in saving life. More people are now aware of our existence and are keen to publicly recognise those who put others before themselves. Although our medals are now something of a rarity, there are very many more cases of cardiopulmonary resuscitation, removing a choking obstruction or just straightforward actions to stop arterial bleeding. Although people taking such actions generally do not put themselves at risk of harm, it takes very great moral courage to intervene in such situations.
People have risked their own lives rescuing people from fires, explosions, road accidents, flooding and many other unexpected and life-threatening situations. In one case a life was lost to save another. As always, it has been a pleasure and a privilege for me, as president of the Society, to meet some of them and present them with their richly deserved awards.
I wish the Royal Humane Society continued success in the coming year.
Photo: Hugo Burnand