Invention, bravery and dedication by sailors and marines rewarded at 2017 Millies

Two Naval ratings, a bomb disposal team and everyone involved in the massive hurricane relief effort in the Caribbean were recognised at the MOD-backed Sun Military Awards - better known as the Millies.

Barely a month after she was at Buckingham Palace receiving the Queen's Gallantry Medal from Her Majesty in person, LS Sally Hughes picked up the 'Hero Overseas' award from TV presenters Ben Fogle and Andrea McLean for her brave rescue of 14 crew from a stricken racing yacht.

And the frogmen of Southern Diving Unit 2 were named 'Heroes at Home', collecting their trophy from Lions star Jamie George and Countryfile presenter Anita Rani during a star-studded ceremony 12at London's Banqueting House.

The Horsea Island-based team have been called out repeatedly over the past 12 months, mostly to deal with unexploded WW2 bombs unearthed during dredging operations to pave the way for the safe arrival of HMS Queen Elizabeth.

And ensuring safety on the new carrier earned WO1 Paul Moonan an 'innovation award', presented by Olympic swimmers Rebecca Adlington and Mark Foster.

He realised a fire engine was needed given the size of the flight deck rather than relying on existing hoses. The result is NMATT which will not only save lives, but also several million pounds.

the satisfaction of safely neutralising old explosives was "reward enough, but to be singled out in such a way is a truly humbling for all of us

Lieutenant Commander Jonny Campbell, Commanding Officer of Southern Diving Unit 2

RFA Mounts Bay, HMS Ocean, 3 Commando Brigade, Wildcat and Merlin helicopters were all dispatched to the British Virgin Islands, Turks and Caicos and Anguilla to provide immediate assistance in the wake of Hurricanes Irma and Maria which caused widespread devastation.

In all, some 2,000 military personnel were committed/mobilised as part of Operation Ruman, which ran for a month and saw more than 800 tonnes of aid delivered, not to mention schools, community centres and homes repaired, power and other utilities restored, food and water distributed, medical aid provided and law and order reintroduced.

The judging panel - a mixture of senior military commanders, veteran and personalities such as Jeremy Clarkson and Lorraine Kelly - decided the collective Ruman effort was worthy of a special recognition award.

The panel pored over submissions from across the forces in ten categories, looking for tales of inspiration, innovation, bravery and dedication.

For 28-year-old Sally from Gosport, the Millie for her sea boat rescue aboard HMS Dragon - she injured her arm, but continued to drive the RIB to complete saving 14 crew of the Clyde Challenger in heavy seas - was a "real honour, but it is not just for me, but everyone involved in the rescue."

Lieutenant Commander Jonny Campbell, Commanding Officer of Southern Diving Unit 2, said the satisfaction of safely neutralising old explosives was "reward enough, but to be singled out in such a way is a truly humbling for all of us."

And WO1 Moonan described himself as "extremely proud. It's probably the best achievement of my life and certainly my Navy career, because it's helping everybody out."