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Retired cop to be honoured after saving young man from harbour plunge

Stuart McIvor took to the water to save the driver
Stuart McIvor took to the water to save the driver

An “action hero” retired policeman who saved a young man from an Orkney harbour has been honoured with a prestigious award for bravery.

Stuart McIvor jumped into the sea off Shapinsay to rescue a young man whose car had ended up in the water in June last year.

The 71-year-old resident of the island has now been given a Royal Humane Society testimonial on parchment for his efforts.

Mr McIvor sprang into action after Alexander Glasgow, 24, of Kirkwall, ended up in the water at the harbour at Balfour in his newly bought car.

Mr McIvor rushed to the water, dived in and swam 20 yards to the car.

A life-belt had been thrown into the water from the ferry and Mr McIvor pushed it on to the man who by then had managed to get out of the car.

Both men were then pulled to safety by the ferry crew.

Mr Glasgow had been due to board a ferry and it was speculated at the time that a mechanical problem may have led to the car ending up in the water.

Mr McIvor worked as a policeman in London prior to retiring to Orkney, and was involved in a river rescue in the UK capital during his career.

His actions were praised by Dick Wilkinson, secretary of the Royal Humane Society.

He said: “Mr McIvor didn’t hesitate. He went straight into the water. Fortunately Mr Glasgow had managed to get free from the sinking vehicle by the time he reached him but it take courage to go into water now knowing how deep it is and which at that time of year would also have been cold.

“He acted with true heroism and richly deserves the award he is to receive. And amazingly we have been told this is not the first rescue who is a retired policeman has carried out.

“Apparently he saved a boy from a fast flowing river in France in the 1960s and also in the 1960s rescued a woman from the River Thames in London.

“We hear talk about all action heroes. I think this is the term to apply to Mr McIvor.”

Speaking after the incident Mr McIvor insisted he was “not a hero” – instead describing his actions as a “calculated decision”.

He said: “I assessed the risk and it was within my ability to do something so I waded in quickly.”

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