A troubled man who came seconds from ending in his own life has met the woman who saved him.

In May, Tommy Beddard, 23, was planning to kill himself – but was stopped by a complete stranger who happened to come across him in Borehamwood.

The lady, who for now wants to remain anonymous, managed to convince Tommy to change his mind and call his parents.

Just over four months later, he has bravely shared his story on social media

He admitted he described his mission as like “looking for a needle in a haystack” but he was desperate to find the hero he met that night.

But it worked, as the husband of the woman recognised Tommy and his story, and they arranged to meet up earlier this week.

At the Alfred Arms in Shenley Road on Thursday evening, Tommy recalled the moment he saw the woman for the first time since, 24 hours earlier in the same pub.

He said: “It wasn’t as emotional as I thought it would be. It was just amazing. I recognised her straight away and just gave her a big hug. We spoke about what happened and how things have changed since. I'm meeting her again hopefully this weekend."

The former Cowley Hill and Hertswood school pupil, who has lived in Borehamwood all of his life, says he has his good and his bad days but admits he is in a “much better” place now.

“I don’t think I would have been here today if it wasn’t for this woman. It sounds cliché but she saved my life. She was in the right place at the right time.

“She asked me to open up. She was with her husband and their dog and to be honest the dog helped distract me and listen to her. I was convinced to call my parents who had no idea what was happening and they were horrified when they heard.”

“When I look back, it doesn’t feel real. You don’t know what it is like to be in that mind-set until you are in it. Something takes over and there is nothing that can prepare you but I knew what I was going to do.”

Tommy, who lives at home with his parents, said he is overwhelmed by the reaction he got on social media to his post.

“I wrote it in the middle of the night but I had to wait for it to be approved. I woke up to so many notifications and messages and I didn’t know why and then I remembered. No one was negative. I thought about how much I would share about that night but I thought let’s not beat around the bush, just say how it was.

“To anyone who may be feeling the way I did then, just remember there is always someone you can talk to. I had never met the person who helped me but she did. The feeling makes you think no one cares but you’ll be surprised by how many people do.”

Have you experienced similar problems? Call Samaritans free on 116 123, email jo@samaritans.org or visit www.samaritans.org