A Helston woman dubbed the “Angel of Woolwich” for her role in calming down two killers in London is at the centre of an alleged racism row.

Ingrid Loyau-Kennett, from Bulwark Road, has again hit the headlines, this time for allegedly making racist claims in Helston Tesco pharmacy.

It is understood that on Monday she was detained under the Mental Health Act.

Police are investigating the claims concerning the 49-year-old, who was escorted from the building by security guards last Friday.

The Sunday Mirror reported that Ms Loyau-Kennett allegedly had a row with a black pharmacist, as customers looked on.

It claimed she told the man he should not be allowed in England and should be working in Nigeria.

It is believed Tesco has been asked to hand over CCTV footage.

A spokesperson for Tesco said: “We are aware of an incident which took place at our Helston store on Friday. Colleagues at the store are helping the police with their inquiries.”

Police have only stated that enquires are ongoing following an allegation of verbal racial abuse at the store. No one has been arrested or even spoken to yet.

Yesterday, however, the Packet learned that a 49-year-old woman, believed to be Ms Loyau-Kennett, was detained under the Mental Health Act.

Police were called to the Bulwark Estate at around lunchtime on Monday, over concerns for the welfare of a woman.

Officers have not confirmed that the two incidents are linked or involve Ms Loyau-Kennett.

A spokeswoman said only: “Following [Monday’s] incident a 49-year-old woman from Helston has been detained under the Mental Health Act to the Royal Cornwall Hospital and released into the care of the NHS.”

Ms Loyau-Kennett came in for national praise last May, after being among the first on the scene following the murder of soldier Lee Rigby in a Woolwich street.

His killers, Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale, have since been jailed over the killing.

Half-French Ms Loyau-Kennett, who has lived in Helston for six years and hopes to find work as a translator for a humanitarian organisation, had been returning home after a visit to the capital to see her children, Basil and Pawony Baradaran, when the drama unfolded.

The former cub scout and brownie leader reasoned with the men, attempting to calm the situation until police arrived.

Ms Loyau-Kennett became a national hero and last October received a Pride of Britain award for bravery, although she was unable to be honoured at the televised ceremony due to reporting restrictions in place at the time.

She was also awarded a Special Certificate of Exceptional Endeavour at the Cornish Gorsedh in Penryn last autumn.

However, locally she has been in dispute with neighbours after distributing leaflets calling on them to voice opposition to a £36,000 play park scheme in Bulwark Road; it has since been built.

Helston police were forced to step up patrols in the area following complaints of anti-social behaviour in Bulwark and Albion Road.