THIRTY-SIX veterans who survived the mountainous seas, biting cold and U-boats of the North Atlantic and Arctic Ocean to man the Arctic Convoys during the Second World War were recognised for their bravery at a special medal ceremony at County Hall, Worcester.

The convoys sailed from the UK, as well as Iceland and North America, to northern ports in Russia to help keep the Soviet Union supplied as it battled Hitler's Nazi Germany.

Several Russian guests attended the event, which was organised by Worcestershire County Council in conjunction with the Embassy of the Russian Federation, and were welcomed by County Council chairman Cllr Pam Davey.

The veterans, all from Worcestershire, received the Ushakov Medal, which was presented by Sergey Nalobin, Counsellor of the Russian Embassy, together with Third Secretaries Sergey Belyakov and Sergey Fedichkin and Assistant Naval Attache Commander Dmitry Sharapov.

After the ceremony the veterans proudly posed for photos before sharing stories of their experiences in the Arctic Convoy with the Embassy and other invited guests which included representatives from the Royal Navy, Commander Andy Price and Chief Petty Officer Tony Scripps.

Cllr Davey said: "It was a very special day to honour these WW2 veterans and recognise their bravery and commitment. As chairman of Worcestershire County Council it was a great privilege for me to welcome these special guests and hear their memories first hand."

The veterans were praised as heroes by Mr Nalobin, for without their efforts modern day Russian may not have existed. However, one replied modestly: " "We are not the heroes, we were just doing our job."