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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

British War Medal and Victory Medal


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Hi All,

I had always assumed that if an other rank was entitled to a BWM and Victory pair only, both medals were impressed with his regimental number, rank and unit as it was at the time he completed his period of active service. Am I wrong in this assumption?

I ask this as I am currently considering buying a group of medals which comprises a pair named to the recipient’s first unit (first on the list on the online MIC preview page, at least) with an MSM awarded during his later service with a second unit (second on the list on the online MIC preview page) with a different regimental number. His rank does not appear to have changed. If my initial assumption was correct, all three medals would be named to the same unit, i.e. his second. Does this mean he was also entitled to a Star?

I have Robert Gould’s book which states that where an other rank is entitled to a Star, the unit on the BWM & Victory pair will match that of the Star even if he was transferred, but the rank on the pair will be the highest held by the recipient during his period of active service. Surely this could lead to combinations of rank and unit which the recipient never held in circumstances where he was transferred and later promoted?

I know I can find out about the serviceman concerned very easily from the MIC itself but I feel I should get my head round the wider issues before I shell out my hard-earned cash. Any help from the forum would therefore be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in anticipation.


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My understanding is that you had the unit details that you first served in a theatre of war with

Rank was the highest you achieved (but I have seen ranks on the medal rolls that arent on the actual medal - the one on the roll being higher so doesnt always seem to be the case :unsure: )

Cant advise on the numbers as the Coldstream Guards (thankfully) kept the same numbers through out the war and didnt change till the early 1920s


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The Campaign medals{Stars/BWM/Victory/TFWM} SHOULD usually have the first unit served with when posted overseas with{which allows for Units that didnt serve overseas,such as some Cyclists Bns,to have Medals named to them}but with other awards{MM,DCM,MSM,etc} the unit served with @ the time of award should appear on the Medal;however ,as with all things medallic,errors occur,medals{which were named independantly anyway,before being "paired" and despatched}were often impressed to the wrong regiment,initials,rank,spelling,[The MiC has a X with dots betwixt the arms by the Corps/Rgt that is to appear on the Medals,in most cases]

I have a Cambridgeshire Regiment Trio to a Sergeant R.Walker,who went to France with them in 1915,was wounded in the arm & returned to serve with the South Staffordshire Regiment,on recouperation,his BWM & Victory are correctly impressed Camb R;The 1914~15 Star however is incorrectly impressed S.Staff R;with his S.Staffs Number.

The problem arises as;when transferred the Medals are issued from the Rolls of that Regiment{though should still be impressed with the original unit details},not his original Regiment.

Providing all numbers & Regiments tally somewhere on the documentation I cannot forsee a problem

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