THE brave actions of a Peeblesshire man who saved two men from imminent danger following a crash have been praised.

An articulated lorry overturned on the A701/A72 near to Tweedsmuir at around 10pm on February 24 last year, travelling 15 metres down an embankment, trapping the two occupants.

Gavin Parker, who lives locally, heard the incident and immediately contacted emergency services.

On seeing smoke coming from the lorry, he used a ladder to pull the occupants from the vehicle.

Gavin’s bravery ensured the men were removed to safety away from the imminent danger of the fire.

And on Friday (February 10), his actions were recognised at the Chief Constable's Bravery and Excellence Awards.

The retired garage owner said: "I didn't think it was brave at the time, so it was a real honour for me to be in the same room as so many brave people.

“Although I didn’t think I deserved the award, it was nice to be invited and I felt very humble.”

Recalling the incident, Gavin said: “I was sitting watching TV with my wife Christine and heard this almighty crash, just like a clap of thunder.

“There have been a number of accidents where we stay on a bad corner and when I looked out I could see some lights in the field.

“I ran over and saw a HGV and it was lying on its side.

“After checking that the people inside were OK, I noticed smoke coming from between the cab and the trailer so it was important to get them out.

"I ran back to the house and got some ladders, put them up against the truck, got the door open, got the two of them out and took them back to the house.

“The most important thing was that the men were OK.”

The men were taken to the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary as a precaution before being released.

Speaking after the ceremony – which was held at police headquarters in Tulliallan – Chief Constable Sir Iain Livingstone said: “ Effective policing is enabled and enhanced by our bond with the public and the trust and support of our communities.

“It is a privilege to recognise the bravery of our fellow citizens who stepped forward with courage when need arose.

“The opportunity to welcome nominees, recipients and their families to headquarters and offer my personal thanks, regards and congratulations is a pleasure.”

Keith Brown, cabinet secretary for justice and veterans, said: “I would like to personally commend each and every one of the nominees for going above and beyond what could be reasonably expected, in order to help others.

“Their collective acts epitomise and signify the very best values of modern policing and of wider society and demonstrate selflessness when faced with incredibly challenging and dangerous situations.”