British campaign medals

British campaign medals are awarded to members of the British Armed Forces, Allied forces and civilians participating in specified military campaigns. Examples include the Defence Medal, for homeland defence in World War II, and the Atlantic Star for World War II sea service in the Atlantic.

18th century

Naval General Service Medal 1847 BAR

19th century

Waterloo Medal BAR
Waterloo Medal BAR
Ribbon bar, Waterloo Medal
Ghuznee Medal BAR
Kabul to Kandahar Star ribbon
Kabul to Kandahar Star ribbon
Kabul to Kandahar Star ribbon
China War Medal 1842 BAR
Kabul to Kandahar Star ribbon
Kabul to Kandahar Star ribbon
Sutlej Medal BAR
Naval General Service Medal 1847 BAR
Military General Service Medal 1847 BAR
Punjab Medal BAR
Army of India Medal BAR
India General Service Medal 1854 BAR
South Africa Medal (1854)
Crimea Medal BAR
Baltic Medal BAR
Indian Mutiny Medal BAR
Second China War Medal BAR
New Zealand Medal BAR
Abyssinian War Medal BAR
Canada General Service Medal BAR
Ashantee War Medal BAR
South Africa Medal (1880)
Afghanistan Medal BAR
Kabul to Kandahar Star ribbon
Egypt Medal BAR
Royal Niger Company's Medal, ribbon bar
British South Africa Comany Medal Ribbon
Ashantee War Medal BAR
Central Africa Medal ribbon bar
India Medal BAR
Ashanti Star BAR
Queens Sudan Medal BAR
East and Central Africa Medal BAR
Queens South Africa Medal BAR
Queens South Africa Medal BAR

20th century

Pre World War I

Third China War Medal BAR
Ashanti Medal BAR
Kings South Africa Medal BAR
Africa General Service Medal BAR
Transport Medal BAR
Tibet Medal BAR
Ribbon - Natal Native Rebellion Medal
India General Service Medal 1909 BAR

World War I

During World War I (1914–1918) the following campaign medals were issued:[1]

Ribbon - 1914 Star & Rosette
Ribbon - 1914 Star
British War Medal BAR
Mercantile Marine War Medal BAR
World War I Victory Medal ribbon
Territorial Forces War Medal BAR

The most frequent combinations are "trios" of either the 1914 or 1914–15 Star, the British War Medal and Victory Medal; and "pairs" of the British War and Victory Medals, these generally for servicemen who joined the war after 1915.[2]
A Memorial Plaque was issued to the next-of-kin of deceased service personnel.

Inter World War

General Service Medal 1918 BAR
Naval General Service Medal 1915 BAR
India General Service Medal 1936 BAR

World War II

During World War II (1939–1945) the following were issued (with authorised Clasp or Emblem (if awarded) in brackets)—the first eleven are listed in the authorised Order of Wearing:[3]

Ribbon - 1939-45 Star
Ribbon - Atlantic Star
Arctic Star bar
Ribbon - Air Crew Europe Star
Ribbon - Africa Star
Ribbon - Pacific Star
Ribbon - Burma Star
Ribbon - Italy Star
Ribbon - France and Germany Star
Defence Medal ribbon
Canadian Volunteer Service Medal BAR
Newfoundland Volunteer War Service Medal BAR
War Medal 1939–1945 (UK) ribbon
Ribbon - Africa Service Medal
Ribbon India Service Medal
New Zealand War Service Medal 1939-1945 BAR
Southern Rhodesia Medal for War Service BAR
Australian Service Medal 1939-45 ribbon

Post World War

Korea Medal
General Service Medal 1962 BAR
Rhodesia Medal Ribbon
South Atlantic Medal BAR
Gulf Medal BAR

21st century

OSM for Sierra Leone BAR
OSM for Afghanistan BAR
OSM for Congo BAR
Iraq Medal BAR
Iraq Reconstruction Service Medal Ribbon 100px
Civilian Service Medal (Afghanistan)
Ebola medal ribbon
General Service Medal 08 ribbon
OSM Iraq and Syria

See also


  1. ^ "No. 38663". The London Gazette (Supplement). 12 July 1949. p. 3404.
  2. ^ "Pip, Squeak and Wilfred". The Long, Long Trail. Archived from the original on 27 February 2008. Retrieved 26 June 2008.
  3. ^ "No. 62529". The London Gazette (Supplement). 11 January 2019. p. 327.
  • Mackay, J & Mussell, J.W. (2003). Medal Yearbook 2003. Token Publishing Ltd, UK.

External links

1914 Star

The 1914 Star, colloquially known as the Mons Star, is a British World War I campaign medal for service in France or Belgium between 5 August and 22 November 1914.

1914–15 Star

The 1914–15 Star is a campaign medal of the British Empire which was awarded to officers and men of British and Imperial forces who served in any theatre of the First World War against the Central European Powers during 1914 and 1915. The medal was never awarded singly and recipients also received the British War Medal and Victory Medal.

Afghanistan Medal (United Kingdom)

The Afghanistan Medal was awarded to members of the British and Indian armies who served in Afghanistan between 1878–1880 during the Second Afghan War, the first war being from 1839–1842.

The war was caused by British fears of increasing Russian involvement in Afghan affairs. In 1877 the Afghan Amir refused to accept a British Resident and in 1878 agreed a treaty with Russia granting it protective rights in Afghanistan. In response, a British-led force entered the country and advanced on Kabul. After defeats at Ali Musjid and Peiwar Kotal, the Afghans sued for peace and accepted a British Resident in Kabul. After the Resident was murdered in September 1879, the war recommenced. A British-led force occupied Kabul, defeating the Afghans en route at Charasia. Sporadic fighting continued and after defeat at Maiwand, a British force were besieged in Kandahar. General Roberts led a column that marched from Kabul to relieve Kandahar, the resulting Afghan defeat leading to the conclusion of the war. The soldiers who took part in General Roberts' march were also awarded the Kabul to Kandahar Star.Medals awarded to the 66th Foot (Berkshire Regiment) and E Battery of B Brigade, Royal Artillery, rate a high premium as these units sustained the heaviest casualties as the battle of Maiwand in July 1880.

Baltic Medal

The Baltic Medal was a campaign medal approved in 1856, for issue to officers and men of the Royal Navy, Royal Marines, and Royal Sappers and Miners who served between March 1854 and August 1855 in the Baltic Sea operations against Russia in the Baltic theatre of the Crimean War. The medal primarily covered naval actions but was also awarded to 106 men of the Royal Sappers and Miners who were landed to place demolition charges against Russian fortifications at Bomarsund and Sveaborg.

Canada General Service Medal

The Canada General Service Medal was a campaign medal awarded by the Canadian Government to both Imperial and Canadian forces for duties related to the Fenian raids between 1866 and 1871. The medal was not initially issued until 1899 and had to be applied for. The period for applying for the medal was later extended to 1907, then to 1928.With late applications, 17,623 medals were awarded, including 15,300 to members of Canadian units.The obverse of the medal bears the head of Queen Victoria with the legend VICTORIA REGINA ET IMPERATRIX, while the reverse depicts the red ensign of Canada surrounded by a wreath of maple leaves with the word CANADA above.

Cape of Good Hope General Service Medal

The Cape of Good Hope General Service Medal is a British campaign medal which was awarded to members of the Cape Colonial Forces who took part in three campaigns in and around the Cape of Good Hope, in Basutoland in 1880–1881, in Transkei in 1880–1881 and in Bechuanaland in 1896–1897.

China War Medal (1900)

The China War Medal 1900 was a British campaign medal approved on 1 January 1902 for issue to British and Indian land and sea troops who served during the Boxer Rebellion, between 10 June and 31 December 1900.

Gwalior Star

The Gwalior Star is a Campaign medal presented by the Honourable East India Company to the soldiers of the British Army and the British led Bengal Army who took part in the 1843 Gwalior Campaign.

India General Service Medal (1909)

The Indian General Service Medal (1909 IGSM) was a campaign medal approved on 1 January 1909, for issue to officers and men of the British and Indian armies. From 1919 it was also awarded to officers and men of the Royal Air Force, with the Waziristan 1925 clasp awarded solely to the RAF.

India Medal

The India Medal was a campaign medal approved in 1896 for issue to officers and men of the British and Indian armies.

The India Medal was awarded for various minor military campaigns in India, chiefly for service on the North-West Frontier during 1895 to 1902. This medal replaced the India General Service Medal (1854). Each campaign was represented by a clasp on the ribbon; seven were sanctioned.

Natal Native Rebellion Medal

The Natal Native Rebellion Medal was a British campaign medal. It was authorised in 1907 for service in Natal during a Zulu revolt against British rule and taxation in 1906. The 1906 Clasp to the medal was awarded to those who had served for more than fifty days.

Naval General Service Medal (1847)

The Naval General Service Medal (NGSM) was a campaign medal approved in 1847, and issued to officers and men of the Royal Navy in 1849. The final date for submitting claims was 1 May 1851. Admiral Thomas Bladen Capel was one of the members of the board that authorised the medal.

The NGSM was awarded retrospectively for various naval actions during the period 1793–1840, a period that included the French Revolutionary Wars, the Napoleonic Wars and the Anglo-American War of 1812. Each battle or campaign covered by the medal was represented by a clasp on the ribbon. The medal was never issued without a clasp, 231 of which were sanctioned. The clasps covered a variety of actions, from boat service, ship to ship skirmishes, to major fleet actions such as the Battle of Trafalgar.

This medal and its army counterpart, the Military General Service Medal, were amongst the first real British campaign medals, issued to all ranks for serving in combat actions.

North West Canada Medal

The Northwest Canada Medal is a British campaign medal issued to the soldiers, volunteers, and North-West Mounted Police (NWMP) personnel who participated in putting down the North-West Rebellion in 1885.

Orders and decorations of the Commonwealth realms

This article concerns the orders and decorations of the Commonwealth realms awarded by the sovereign in right of each nation.

Awards are listed by order of wear.

Rhodesia Medal

The Rhodesia Medal was initiated by the British Government in consultation with Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Kenya, whose forces took part in Operation AGILA, (Operation MIDFORD for the New Zealand forces). The role of the multi-national force was to keep peace between 22,000 guerrilla fighters and the Rhodesian forces during the ceasefire and run-up to the 1980 elections.

Each country treats the medal as part of its own honours system.

Scinde Medal

The Scinde Medal was authorised on 22 September 1843 and issued to soldiers of the Honourable East India Company, the 22nd Regiment of Foot of the British Army and members of the Indian Navy who manned the Indus Flotilla, who participated in Major General Sir Charles Napier's conquest of Scinde between 1842 and 1843.

South Atlantic Medal

The South Atlantic Medal is a British campaign medal awarded to British military personnel and civilians for service in the Falklands War of 1982 between the United Kingdom and Argentina. Over 33,000 medals have been awarded. The South Atlantic Medal Association was formed in 1997 for recipients of the South Atlantic Medal.

Sutlej Medal

The Sutlej Medal was a campaign medal approved in 1846, for issue to officers and men of the British Army and Honourable East India Company who served in the Sutlej campaign of 1845-46 (also known as the First Anglo-Sikh War). This medal was the first to use clasps to denote soldiers who fought in the major battles of the campaign.The medal was approved on 17 April 1846.

Victory Medal (United Kingdom)

The Victory Medal (also called the Inter-Allied Victory Medal) is a United Kingdom and British Empire First World War campaign medal.

The award of a common allied campaign medal was recommended by an inter-allied committee in March 1919. Each allied nation would design a 'Victory Medal' for award to their own nationals, all issues having certain common features, including a winged figure of victory on the obverse and the same ribbon. Fifteen countries finally awarded the medal.

British campaign medals
19th century
20th century
pre-First World War
First World War
Inter World War
Second World War
Post War
21st century


This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.