A NEW memorial stone to commemorate murdered policeman Ian Dibell has been unveiled in Clacton by Prime Minister David Cameron.

Mr Cameron paid tribute to the "sacrifice" made by the officer before unveiling the memorial at Clacton seafront’s Sensory Gardens.

The Police Memorial Trust held the special service as a tribute to the hero police officer, who was posthumously awarded the George Medal after being shot while off-duty in July, 2012.

PC Dibell's family attended the service along with his loved ones, friends, police colleagues and Mr Cameron.

“We are here today to remember the extraordinary courage of one of our country’s finest policeman, a man who made the ultimate sacrifice to save the lives of others.

“PC Ian Dibell was not even on duty at the time. He was at home when the gun was first fired. He could have stayed there.

“When he got to the scene he could have observed from a distance and requested assistance without tackling the gunman.

“But such thoughts didn’t enter his head. He knew that innocent lives were at risk and he acted instinctively and decisively.

“Unarmed and off duty he leaned in through the window of the gunman’s car and attempted to disarm and detain him.

“It was a selfless act of heroism that cost PC Ian Dibell his life and it was one which we will always remember with enormous gratitude and admiration.

“In December 2013 PC Ian Dibell rightly became the first officer in 21 years to receive the George Medal for gallantry. His name is also written in the book of remembrance in the national police memorial on the Mall in London.

“But it is absolutely fitting that there should also be a permenant memorial here in Clacton.”

The unveiling was the first memorial to be put up by the Police Memorial Trust since the death of its founder and film producer Michael Winner in 2013.

Essex Police chief constable Stephen Kavanagh said: “Ian Dibell was a coppers’ copper.

“To his very last day of service, to his very last breath, Ian defined justice.

“PC Ian Dibell’s last acts before tackling an armed criminal was to go back to his house.

“Not because he was running away, not because he was hiding, but because he went to get his warrant card – he put himself on duty.

“He then tried to wrestle a gun out of the hands of a criminal intent on killing others.

“In taking those actions, Ian undoubtedly prevented further deaths.

“But it is his professionalism as well as his bravery that sets him apart.”

Maldon and Burnham Standard: Gunman Peter Reeve later killed himself in cemetery Gunman Peter Reeve later killed himself in cemetery

Gunman Peter Reeve later killed himself in a graveyard

PC Dibell was just 41 when he was killed near his own home as he tried to disarm Peter Reeve in Redbridge Road, Clacton.

The service took place in the Sensory Gardens, at Marine Parade West, at 1.20pm on Friday.

Maldon and Burnham Standard:

Armed police at the scene of the shooting in July, 2012