Elizabeth Bryan, Captain Peter Bryan RA, Nicola Purchase

Elizabeth Bryan, Captain Peter Bryan RA, Nicola Purchase – Bronze Medal

On the evening of the London Bridge and Borough Market attacks 8 innocent people died and 48 were injured. Elizabeth, Nicola and Peter were at a pre-wedding party when Elizabeth, a registered A&E nurse, saw an emergency vehicle stop in the middle of London Bridge and then two other vehicles blocking each end. Hearing a helicopter and seeing people running from the scene, she immediately concluded that a major incident was unfolding.

She told Nicola, also a nurse, that they should go immediately to help. Both women ran towards the commotion, followed by Peter. As they ran towards the bridge people were fleeing. They were blocked by a security guard who said it was a terrorist attack, but they ignored him and pushed through the cordon. On the bridge they found numerous victims who had been mown down. A single ambulance with just three crew were performing CPR on a woman, so Elizabeth and Peter took over. Nicola ran over to care for a critically injured man who had multiple fractures and a significant head injury.

Their actions released the medics for other tasks. As Peter could handle the CPR alone, Elizabeth grabbed a trauma pack from the ambulance and ran to triage other victims. She tried to get an intravenous line and an airway into a man undergoing CPR, but she was unable to save him. She then went to a German woman who had multiple fractures, including her pelvis. It was a confusing and frightening situation with the helicopters overhead, the sound of live gunfire, and riot police charging by. Elizabeth and Peter started to carry the injured to the waiting paramedics and helicopter teams to the north side of the bridge. It was still considered too dangerous for them to come any further forward.

They laid the injured out for the doctors and helped with the dead. By this time the emergency medical services had arrived in force and began moving forward onto the bridge. Even then Elizabeth, Nicola and Peter remained on the bridge and continued to help until the situation was under control. Only then did the three go back to their friends and carry on with their pre-wedding party.