A BELSAY farmer has been recognised for his act of bravery at a national awards ceremony.

George Common (60) was recognised at the Police Public Bravery Awards in London last week for his part in catching a paedophile who was abusing a young boy in a car on his land last year.

The awards were set up by the National Police Chiefs Council so people could be nominated for risking their lives to protect the public.

On the afternoon of Saturday, October 7, 2017, George was checking his land and livestock when he noticed a car parked in a remote lay-by.

When George approached the car he saw a man engaging in sexual activity with his victim . He confronted the man and tried to pull the young boy from the car.

George was nearly knocked to the ground when the man attempted to drive off, ramming into George’s Landrover three times before speeding off from the scene.

But he was able to take down the car’s registration number and give officers a description of the man, which proved critical to police identifying the suspect.

Louis Murray (23), of Blakelaw, was later arrested and jailed for 10 years after admitting a string of child sex offences.

Speaking after the ceremony, George said: “When I saw the car parked up, I was conscious that something wasn’t right.

“Hearing all of the stories in the room – some of them sad and upsetting – made me feel privileged to have been invited.

“It was out of this world and I’ll never forget it. It was great to hear all about members of the community working with the police to be their eyes and ears.”

Northumbria Police Chief Constable Winton Keenen, who also attended the ceremony to present George with his medal, praised his actions.

He said: “It was a real honour and a humbling experience to see such incredible acts of bravery formally recognised.”