A YOUNG woman who answered the cry of an 82-year-old in trouble has been presented with a special award.

Nineteen-year-old Leah Bailey was walking to her work as a carer when she heard a cry for help near some trees in Chester-le-Street.

When she reached the scene, she found Olive Showler in a great deal of pain and distress.

Mrs Showler had fallen on her way to deliver Christmas cards, dislocating her shoulder and suffering from the cold as she was unable to move.

Miss Bailey called an ambulance and waited for over two hours with Mrs Showler while recruiting the help of family members to bring blankets to ensure the fragile lady did not conduct hypothermia.

Mrs Shower described Miss Bailey as a “guardian angel”, stating that she had saved her life.

Miss Bailey’s act has won her the honour of a Chairman’s Medal, presented by Councillor John Lethbridge, chairman of Durham County Council, at a special event at County Hall to which Leah brought her grandparents.

Miss Bailey said: “I was very shocked when I found out that I was nominated for the Chairman’s Medal.

“I would hope any other person would have done the same if they were faced with that situation, so to be awarded was amazing.

“I would like to thank everyone who was involved in me receiving this award and for giving me this opportunity.”

The Chairman’s Medal is the highest honour that Durham County Council can award to individuals and organisations for outstanding voluntary contribution to County Durham.

Cllr John Lethbridge said: “Leah’s proactive and caring approach helped someone in great distress.

“It can be scary going into a situation not knowing who is asking for help, or what the problem may be, but Leah showed great compassion and practical thinking.”