FIFTEEN-years-ago this week, a man from Teesside was honoured for his bravery after he jumped into a river to save a 71-year-old pensioner.

Bradley Margach, 24, from Stockton, received a bronze lifesaving medal of the Order of St John, presented to him by the Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire, Lord Crathorne.

Mr Margach plunged 20ft into the River Tees from the Tees Barrage, at Stockton to save the pensioner, dressed only in his pyjamas and slippers, and kept his head above water for 20 minutes until help arrived.

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He said: "I just did what I had to do. It was the natural thing to do, and it's a good thing that has come out of it, that I was able to help somebody."

Meanwhile, the Duke of Edinburgh paid a visit to Eden Camp to open a new exhibition on the Second World War called “human torpedoes”.

The former prisoner of war camp in Malton, North Yorkshire, dedicated the exhibition to frogmen who risked their lives as "charioteers", steering submarine-like devices into enemy harbours before making an escape.

While at the museum, the duke met Italian naval officers, war veterans from across Europe, and veterans from the Escape Lines Memorial Society, chatting to them as he looked around the museum.

Prince Philip admitted that he had had a close run in with Italian charioteers in 1941. He had been a sub-lieutenant on board HMS Valiant. Shortly after he had left for another ship, the Italians bombed the Valiant's Mediterranean harbour.

He said: "It's quite interesting, but I left HMS Valiant just about two months before these chaps got at her."

On Wearside, former Olympic medalist Steve Cram opened a £2.2m sports and arts facility.

It was launched with funding from the government and National Lottery, at Farringdon Junior School as part of a national initiative aimed at improving school’s and communities' access to sport and art facilities.

Councillor Brian Dodds said: "The new facilities will ensure both the schools involved and the local communities have great new opportunities to be involved in sport and the arts."