Royal Air Force personnel from Norfolk have been honoured with a national award.

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The 904 Expeditionary Air Wing Tornado Detachment won the Best Unit category at the Sun Military Awards, known as the Millies.

The Tornado Detachment has airmen from both RAF Marham and RAF Lossiemouth and is based at Kandahar airfield in Afghanistan.

RAF Marham’s station commander, Group Captain Harv Smyth said: “Winning the Millie is phenomenal news for the Tornado Force, and for Royal Air Force Marham.

“This award isn’t just for the team that have served in Afghanistan as part of the Tornado Detachment at Kandahar: it’s as much for those people back here at home, including families and local community, who religiously support the ‘pointy end’ of the front line and underpin our ability to deliver air support at any place, and at any time.

“This has been a whole force effort, and that fact makes me especially proud – what a wonderful early Christmas present.”

The RAF Tornado GR4 attack and reconnaissance aircraft has been on active service for 23 years, serving in Iraq, Kosovo, Libya and Afghanistan.

The five Tornado Squadron’s; II(AC), XI(B), 12(B), 31 and 617, are based at RAF Marham and RAF Lossiemouth, and most have done more than one tour at the Kandahar base in southern Afghanistan.

Air Marshal Barry North, air member for personnel and capability and deputy commander capability, represented the RAF at the event.

He said: “It was a privilege to attend the 2013 Sun Military Awards and to witness the telling at first hand of the supreme acts of bravery, professionalism and selfless dedication to duty shown by the men and women of the United Kingdom’s armed forces and their civilian counterparts during the last year.

“Each and everyone of the nominees and winners should be justifiably proud of their achievements; all the servicemen and women of the three armed services should take comfort from the high regard in which they are held by the nation.”

The guests of honour at the ceremony, which was held at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, were Prince Charles and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall. They were joined by prime minister David Cameron and his wife, defence ministers, senior military, government and political figures and stars from the worlds of entertainment and sport.

The Millies are in their sixth year and were organised by The Sun newspaper in conjunction with the Ministry of Defence. The ceremony will be shown on Monday at 9pm on ITV1.




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