A HEROIC couple who saved ducks from being killed by a cat have been praised by residents.

Bill Hanlon, from Westhoughton, was pulling onto his driveway on Thursday night after work when he spotted a duck and duckling being eyed up by a cat.

Feeling like he had to step in, 54-year-old bus driver Bill and wife Lesley, 52 - took action.

It took nearly 40 minutes but the couple managed to usher the ducks to the safety of a nearby pond.

Bill said: “I was pulling onto my drive and spotted the female duck on the pavement next to my house - not something you’d normally see. When I got out of my car she was crossing the road and I saw the baby following.

“We live where a few neighbours have cats, so I knew I had to do something. I rushed in the house and quickly told my wife Lesley what I was doing.

“She had just put her pyjamas on and was settling down for the evening - but she jumped up and followed me out.”

The pair ushered the ducks down a path which leads to the pond, while looking for any other ducklings.

After reaching into nettles to rescue the baby duck who got stuck, Bill and Lesley coaxed the mother duck down the right path.

Bill added: “We encountered a couple of dog walkers. We shouted to ask them to put their dogs on leads and keep to one side.

“They looked perplexed as we passed them, but they were very understanding once I’d explained.

“One woman actually thought we were just taking a duck for a walk on a lead.

“I dread to think what would have happened if we hadn’t intervened, but we were happy we got them to safety.”

Bill posted a video of the incident online - and has been praised my members of the community for the ‘kind’ and ‘selfless’ act.

One said: “A truly great story of humanity at its very best. A family willing to go the extra quarter of a mile for another.”

Another added: “May God bless you both for your swift act of kindness towards our wildlife.”

The video has received more than 1,500 likes on Facebook.