THREE Wiltshire police officers who saved the life a drunk suicidal man have been voted the bravest cops in the south west at the 13th annual Police Bravery Awards.

PCs Sam Withey and Stephen Porter, along with acting sergeant David Thompson, clinched the title on a star-studded night at The Dorchester in London on Thursday.

The officers received one of eight regional awards at the ceremony in the presence of Home Secretary Jacqui Smith and a host of celebrities.

It was followed by a reception at 10 Downing Street where the three officers, along with 64 other nominees, met prime minister Gordon Brown.

The three Wiltshire officers saved the life of a former railway worker in November, as he was hanging from a rope, attached to the roof of a depot at Westbury Railway Station.

The man, who was also armed with a Stanley knife, slipped off the roof with the rope looped round his neck and the officers raced to his aid.

PC Withey, 31, who was based at Warminster police station at the time of the incident, said he enjoyed the awards evening but said he and his colleagues had not done anything out of the ordinary.

He said: "It was very different hob-nobbing with celebrities and being in a posh hotel, not something a humble bobby is used to.

"I'm absolutely flabbergasted. It's mind-blowing that we won the regional award.

"It's good to get a pat on the back but I still don't think we did anything particularly special, "It's one of those things where if someone is hanging on the end of a rope it's a pretty strange person who stands there and watches it happen.

"The main thing is he survived."

One of the highlights for PC Withey was meeting actor Philip Glenister, who plays no-nonsense cop DCI Gene Hunt in the popular BBC One series Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes.

Cherie Blair was among the big names the trio also met as she was sitting at their table.

The awards were co-hosted by The Sun newspaper and editor Rebekah Wade said: "The quick actions of these three officers saved a man's life and they deserve the highest praise for their bravery.

"In a very difficult situation they put their own safety at risk and this award is fitting praise to their dedication to duty."

Paul McKeever, chairman of the Police Federation, which organises the awards, said: "These officers deserve the highest praise for their quick thinking and heroic actions. They are a credit to the police service."