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Metropolitan Police honour for officer killed in Westminster terror attack

Pc Keith Palmer confronted Khalid Masood outside the Houses of Parliament despite the danger he faced.

Pc Keith Palmer has been posthumously honoured by the Metropolitan Police for his heroic response during the Westminster terror attack.

The officer, who was stabbed to death when he confronted attacker Khalid Masood outside the Houses of Parliament last March, was named the winner of the outstanding bravery of the year prize at the Met Excellence Awards.

On the day of the attack on March 22, Pc Palmer, a husband and father, was on duty at the Palace of Westminster.

Pc Keith Palmer, who has been posthumously awarded at a ceremony in London (Metropolitan Police/PA)

The 48-year-old officer came face to face with Masood, who was armed with two large knives, moments after the terrorist drove a car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge.

Intent on protecting his colleagues and the public, Pc Palmer confronted the 52-year-old attacker despite the danger he faced.

The policeman was fatally wounded during the incident, which came to a close when Masood was shot dead by armed officers.

Pc Palmer had served on the Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Group since 2016 and had been with the Met for 16 years.

Thank you to all the men and women of the Met who give so much for London every single day Met Commissioner Cressida Dick

This is not the first honour for Pc Palmer, as last year it was announced that he was to be awarded a George Medal in the Queen’s civilian gallantry list.

Four other people were killed in the Westminster attack.

Conservative MP Tobias Ellwood was also honoured at the ceremony, being given an outstanding contribution award for his efforts in rushing to help Pc Palmer.

Mr Ellwood, a former soldier, tried in vain to save the officer, giving him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and applying pressure to staunch the flow of blood from his wounds.

Palace of Westminster incident

Other winners at the Met Excellence Awards, which took place in central London, included Pc Philip Stone, who was given the police officer of the year accolade.

Pc Stone is responsible for co-ordinating the work of the Met’s Disaster Victim Identification Cadre, which organises the national and international recovery and identification of human remains for the coroner to repatriate them to their families.

The cadre is deployed at short notice and works in challenging environments.

The role is physically and mentally demanding, and Pc Stone was said to have worked tirelessly for funding for equipment and training.

Last year, he co-ordinated the response to five very different events, including terrorist attacks and human disasters across the UK.

In 2017, his teams recovered more than 110 bodies, and all have been positively identified and repatriated to their families.

Scotland Yard Commissioner Cressida Dick said: “I thoroughly enjoyed my first Met Excellence Awards as Commissioner.

“It was wonderful to see so many officers, staff, volunteers and community members at the event and to hear their stories.

“The awards provide a great opportunity to showcase some of the extraordinary effort that goes into protecting Londoners and making our city safer for everyone.

“Thank you to all the men and women of the Met who give so much for London every single day.”

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