Selection of modern British military medals 120612 CREDIT ALAMY STOCK PHOTO
There are a number of military medals that can be awarded to personnel (Picture: Alamy Stock Photo).
UK

What are the different medals that can be awarded?

Take a look at the medals that can be awarded and who can receive them.

Selection of modern British military medals 120612 CREDIT ALAMY STOCK PHOTO
There are a number of military medals that can be awarded to personnel (Picture: Alamy Stock Photo).

The Ministry of Defence Medal Office issues medals to recognise the personal accomplishments and service achievements of individuals serving in the Royal Navy, British Army or Royal Air Force, veterans and civilian personnel.

The awards below are listed in the official 'order of precedence' with the letters in brackets put after a person's surname to show their award.

Decorations, Gallantry and Distinguished Conduct medals

These awards cannot be given via application, recipients must be recommended to qualify.

The Victoria Cross (Picture: MOD).

Victoria Cross (VC)

The Victoria Cross is the premier Operational Gallantry award given for 'most conspicuous bravery, or some daring or pre-eminent act of valour or self-sacrifice, or extreme devotion to duty in the presence of the enemy'.

It may be awarded to all ranks of the services and civilians and can be awarded posthumously. Individuals who perform a further act of such gallantry, which would have merited a second award of the VC, would be issued with a bar.

George Cross (GC)

The George Cross (Picture: MOD).

The George Cross is the premier award given for non-operational gallantry or gallantry, not in the presence of an enemy. This is awarded for acts of the greatest heroism or of the most conspicuous courage in circumstances of extreme danger.

The George Cross is equal in stature in the UK honours system to the Victoria Cross, the highest military gallantry award. This has always been the case since the introduction of the award in 1940.

It may be awarded to all ranks of the services and civilians and can be awarded posthumously.

Orders of the Bath and the British Empire

Senior civil servants and military officers can be nominated for an Order of the Bath with Diplomats and people serving the UK abroad eligible for nomination for Order of St Michael and St George.

Distinguished Service Order (DSO)

The Distinguished Service Order is an operational gallantry award given for highly successful command and leadership during active operations. Personnel who perform a further act of such leadership, which would have merited a second award of the DSO, would be issued with a gold bar.

It may be awarded to all ranks of the services. This award is not available posthumously.

Conspicuous Gallantry Cross (CGC)

The Conspicuous Gallantry Cross (Picture: MOD).

The Conspicuous Gallantry Cross is an operational gallantry award given to all ranks of the services in recognition of an act (or acts) of conspicuous gallantry during active operations against the enemy. Personnel who perform a further act of such gallantry, which would have merited a second award of the CGC, would be issued with a silver bar.

This award is available posthumously.

Royal Red Cross (Class I) (RRC)

The Royal Red Cross is a Meritorious award given ‘for exceptional devotion and competency in the performance of actual nursing duties…. over a continuous and long period’. Holders of the first-class decoration are known as Members (RRC).

These awards are only available to the nursing services and are not available posthumously.

Distinguished Service Cross (DSC)

The Distinguished Service Cross (Picture: MOD).

The Distinguished Service Cross is an operational gallantry award given to all ranks of the services in recognition of exemplary gallantry during active operations against the enemy at sea. Personnel who perform a further act of such gallantry, which would have merited a second award of the DSC, are issued with a silver bar, with rounded ends, ornamented by a crown.

This award is available posthumously.

Military Cross (MC)

The Military Cross (Picture: MOD).

The Military Cross is an operational gallantry award given to all ranks of the services in recognition of exemplary gallantry during active operations against the enemy on land. Personnel who perform a further act of such gallantry, which would have merited a second MC, will be issued with a silver bar ornamented by the crown.

This award is available posthumously.

Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)

The Distinguished Flying Cross (Picture: MOD).

The Distinguished Flying Cross is an operational gallantry award given to all ranks of the services in recognition of exemplary gallantry during active operations against the enemy in the air. Personnel who perform a further act of such gallantry, which would have merited a second award of the DFC, would be issued with a silver bar ornamented by an eagle.

This award is available posthumously.

Air Force Cross (AFC)

The Air Force Cross (Picture: MOD).

The Air Force Cross is a non-operational award given to all ranks of the services in recognition of exemplary gallantry while flying not in the presence of the enemy. Personnel who perform a further act of such gallantry, which would have merited the award of a second AFC, are issued with a silver bar.

This award is available posthumously.

Royal Red Cross (Class II) (ARRC)

The Royal Red Cross (Class 2) front and back (Picture: MOD).

The Royal Red Cross (Class II) is a Meritorious award given for special devotion and competency in the performance of actual nursing duties…. over a continuous and long period’. Holders of the second class decoration are known as Associates (ARRC). Holders of a Royal Red Cross (Class II) (ARRC) who merit a second award are promoted to a Royal Red Cross (Class I) (RRC).

These awards are only available to the nursing services and are not available posthumously.

George Medal (GM)

    The George Medal front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The George Medal is awarded for conspicuous gallantry not in the presence of the enemy. A silver bar may be issued to George Medal holders who perform a further act of such bravery which would have merited award of a second GM.

    This award is available posthumously.

    Queen’s Gallantry Medal (QGM)

    The Queen's Gallantry Medal front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The Queen’s Gallantry Medal is awarded to civilians for acts of exemplary bravery at a level below that of the George Medal. The QGM is also awarded to military personnel for acts which military honours would not normally be granted such as acts of exemplary bravery not in the presence of the enemy.

    A silver bar may be issued to QGM holders who perform a further act of such bravery which would have merited award of the QGM.

    This award is available posthumously.

    Queen’s Volunteer Reserves Medal (QVRM)

    The Queen's Volunteer Reserves Medal front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The Queen’s Volunteer Reserves Medal is a meritorious award given for members of any rank of the Volunteer Reserve Forces, for devotion to duty and exemplary service over a period usually of at least 10 years that has been of particular value and an outstanding example to others.

    This award is not available posthumously.

    Mention in Despatches

    The Mention in Dispatches award (Picture: MOD).

    A Mention in Despatches is an operational gallantry award given to all ranks for an act (or acts) of bravery during active operations.

    This award is available posthumously.

    Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service

    The Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service Award (Picture: MOD).

    A Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service is awarded for meritorious service in an operational theatre.

    This award is available posthumously.

    Queen’s Commendation for Bravery

    The Queen's Commendation for Bravery award (Picture: MOD).

    The Queen’s Commendation for Bravery is awarded for an act (or acts) of bravery not in the presence of the enemy.

    This award is available posthumously.

    Queen’s Commendation for Bravery in the Air

    The Queen's Commendation for Bravery in the Air award (Picture: MOD).

    The Queen's Commendation for Bravery in the Air is awarded for an act (or acts) of bravery while flying not in the presence of the enemy.

    This award is available posthumously.

    World War I medals

    All World War I medals were issued to the recipient or next of kin after the war ended.

    The MOD Medal Office does not provide replacement World War I medals.

    Replicas can be bought from a medal dealer.

    1914 Star

    The 1914 Star was awarded to personnel who served in France and Belgium between 5 August and 22 November 1914.

    1914-15 Star

    The 1914-15 Star was awarded to personnel who saw service in any theatre of war between 5 August 1914 and 31 December 1915, other than those who had already qualified for the 1914 Star.

    British War Medal 1914-20

    The British War Medal was awarded to personnel in recognition of the successful conclusion of World War I. It was later extended until 1920 to cover mine-clearing services and operations in North and South Russia, the eastern Baltic, Siberia, the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea.

    Victory Medal 1914-19

    The Victory Medal was awarded to all personnel who received the 1914 or the 1914-15 Stars. It is often referred to as the Allied War Medal.

    World War 2 Medals

    Nine stars were issued for the campaigns of World War II. The colours of the ribbons have symbolic significance and are believed to have been designed personally by King George VI.

    No more than five stars may be awarded to one person. The retrospective introduction of the Arctic Star in 2013, following the Sir John Holmes Independent Medal Review, meant that a sixth star could be worn. In all cases, it is only the Arctic Star that is the sixth star that can be worn.

    Those who qualify for more are awarded a clasp with the title of one of the stars to which they qualify. The clasp is then attached to the ribbon of one of the other stars.

    If a veteran qualifies for two or three of the Atlantic, Air Crew Europe and France and Germany stars, the first star earned is awarded.

    The recipient will then receive a clasp with the title of the second star earned to be worn on the ribbon of the first. A third star or clasp will not be awarded in this case.

    1939 to 1945 Star

    1939 to 1945 Star (Picture: MOD).

    The 1939 to 1945 Star is awarded to personnel who completed operational service overseas between 3 September 1939 and 8 May 1945 (2 Sept 1945 in Far East).

    The colours of the ribbon represent the three services. The star is worn with the dark blue stripe furthest from the left shoulder.

    Recipients of the 1939-45 Star may also be eligible for the Battle of Britain Clasp if they have served as aircrew on a fighter aircraft or been engaged in the Battle of Britain between 10 July 1940 and 31 October 1940.

    Recipients of the 1939-45 Star may also be eligible for the Battle of Britain Clasp if they served as aircrew on a fighter aircraft and been engaged in the Battle of Britain between 10 July 1940 and 31 October 1940.

    To be eligible for the Bomber Command Clasp, applicants must have served as aircrew with a UK based Bomber Command Unit and served between 3 September 1939 and 8 May 1945.

    Clasps are worn on the ribbon of the 1939 to 1945 Star.

    Atlantic Star

    The Atlantic Star (Picture: MOD).

    The Atlantic Star is awarded for operational service in the Atlantic and home waters between 3 September 1939 and 8 May 1945 (2 September 1945 in Far East).

    The colours of ribbon represent the Atlantic Ocean.

    The Atlantic Star is worn with the blue edge furthest from the left shoulder.

    Air Crew Europe Star

    Air Crew Europe Star (Picture: MOD).

    The Air Crew Europe Star is earned almost exclusively by RAF personnel for operational flying from UK bases over Europe between 3 September 1939 and 5 June 1944.

    The ribbon colours of the ribbon represent the sky, night flying and enemy searchlights to symbolise the continuous service of the Air Force by night and day.

    Arctic Star

    Arctic Star (Picture: MOD).

    The Arctic Star is awarded for operational service of any length north of the Arctic Circle (66, 32 N) between 3 September 1939 and 8 May 1945.

    The Arctic Star commemorates the Arctic Convoys that sailed to North Russia in support of the Russian allies.

    Africa Star

    Africa Star (Picture: MOD).

    The Africa Star is awarded to personnel who served in North Africa, Malta or Egypt between 10 June 1940 and 12 May 1943.

    Pacific Star: Malaya, Singapore and the Pacific Ocean

    The Pacific Star (Picture: MOD).

    The Pacific Star is awarded for operational service in Malaya, Singapore, China, Hong Kong or Sumatra between 8 December 1941 and 2 September 1945.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the jungle, the beaches and the three services.

    If a veteran also qualifies for the Burma Star, they will only be awarded the first star they earned.

    They will then receive a clasp with the title of the second star earned, which is worn on the ribbon of the first.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the jungle, the beaches and the three services.

    Burma Star

    The Burma Star (Picture: MOD).

    The Burma Star is awarded for operational service in Burma between 11 December 1941 and 2 September 1945.

    Those serving in Bengal and Assam in India and China, Hong Kong, Malaya or Sumatra between other specified dates may also qualify.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the sun, British and Commonwealth forces.

    If a veteran also qualifies for the Pacific Star, they will only be awarded the first star they earned.

    They will then receive a clasp with the title of the second star earned, which is worn on the ribbon of the first.

    Italy Star

    The Italy Star (Picture: MOD).

    The Italy Star is awarded for operational service in Sicily or Italy between 11 July 1943 and 8 May 1945.

    Those who served in Yugoslavia, Greece, Corsica or Sardinia between certain other specified dates will also qualify.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the national colours of Italy.

    France and Germany Star

    The France and Germany Star (Picture: MOD).

    The France and Germany Star is awarded for operational service in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, The Netherlands or Germany between 6 June 1944 and 8 May 1945.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the national colours of the United Kingdom, France and The Netherlands.

    Defence Medal

    The Defence Medal front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The Defence Medal is awarded for non-operational service such as those service personnel working in headquarters, on training bases and airfields and members of the Home Guard.

    The medal is also awarded for non-operational service overseas for example in India or South Africa.

    The colours of the ribbon symbolise enemy attacks on Britain’s ‘green and pleasant land’ and the blackout.

    War Medal 1939 to 1945

    War Medal 1939 to 1945 front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The War Medal is awarded to all full-time personnel of the Armed Forces wherever they were serving.

    The medal was granted in addition to campaign stars and the Defence Medal.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the Union Jack.

    Legion d'Honneur

    The Legion d'Honneur is issued by the French government to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Normandy Landings.

    Post World War II campaign medals

    General Service Medal 1918-62

    General Service Medal 1918 to 1962 with Malaya clasp front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The General Service Medal (GSM) 1918-1962 was awarded to Army and RAF personnel who meet the qualifying criteria for service in any of the following geographical areas:

    • South Persia
    • Kurdistan
    • Iraq
    • North West Persia
    • Southern Desert Iraq
    • Northern Kurdistan
    • Palestine
    • South East Asia, 1945 to 1946
    • Palestine, 1945 to 1948
    • Malaya
    • Cyprus
    • Near East
    • Arabian Peninsula
    • Brunei
    • Canal Zone

    The medal is also awarded for:

    • Bomb and Mine Clearance, 1945 to 1949
    • Bomb and Mine Clearance, 1945 to 1956
    • Berlin Airlift

    If eligible for a medal, the recipient will be awarded the GSM with a clasp for the relevant geographical area.

    Naval General Service Medal 1915

    The Naval General Service Medal (GSM) 1915 was awarded to Royal Navy and Royal Marines personnel who meet the qualifying criteria for service in any of the following geographical areas:

    • Palestine, 1936-1939
    • South East Asia, 1945-46
    • Palestine, 1945-48
    • Malaya
    • Yangtze, 1949
    • Canal Zone
    • Cyprus
    • Near East
    • Arabian Peninsula
    • Brunei

    The medal is also awarded for:

    • Minesweeping, 1945-51
    • Bomb and Mine Clearance, 1945-49
    • Bomb and Mine Clearance, 1945-53
    • Bomb and Mine Clearance Mediterranean
    • Berlin Airlift

    If eligible for a medal, the recipient will be awarded the Naval GSM with a clasp for the relevant geographical area.

    Korea Medal

    The Korea Medal front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The Korea Medal is awarded to personnel who participated in the Korean War between July 1950 and 27 July 1953.

    General Service Medal 1962-2007

    The General Service Medal 1962 to 2007 with Cyprus clasp front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The General Service Medal (GSM) 1962-2007 is awarded to Army, RAF, Royal Navy and Royal Marines personnel who meet the qualifying criteria for service in any of the following geographical areas:

    • Borneo
    • Cyprus, 1963-64
    • Radfan
    • South Arabia
    • Malay Peninsula
    • Northern Ireland
    • Dhofar
    • Lebanon
    • Gulf
    • Kuwait
    • North Iraq and South Turkey

    The medal is also awarded for:

    • Mine Clearance: Gulf of Suez
    • Air Operations Iraq

    If eligible for a medal, the recipient will be awarded a GSM with a clasp for the relevant geographical area.

    If the recipient becomes eligible for a further clasp, that clasp should be added to the GSM ribbon, worn above the first clasp.

    Pingat Jasa Malaysia Medal

    The Pingat Jasa Malaysia (PJM) Medal is issued by the Malaysian government to members of the British and Commonwealth Armed Forces for service of 90 days or more in Malaysia and Singapore. The qualifying dates are:

    • Malaysia during the period 31 August 1957 and 12 August 1966 inclusive
    • Singapore during the period 3 August 1957 and 9 August 1965 inclusive

    Applications for the PJM Medal are processed by the Malaysian government.

    South Atlantic Medal

    The South Atlantic medal front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The South Atlantic Medal was awarded for service in the Falklands Islands, the dependencies, or in the South Atlantic between 2 April 1982 and 14 June 1982.

    To apply for the South Atlantic Medal and rosette, veterans must have either:

    • One day of service in the Falkland Islands or their dependencies, or in the South Atlantic, south of 35 south and north of 60 south before 14 June 1982
    • One operational sortie south of Ascension Island before 14 June 1982

    To apply for the South Atlantic Medal without the rosette, veterans must have:

    • Thirty days' service or more in the South Atlantic, south of 7 south and north of 60 south
    • Completed service no later than 21 October 1982

    The colours of the ribbon symbolise the Atlantic Ocean.

    Gulf Medal 1990-1991

    Gulf War Medal with 16 Jan to 28 February 1991 Clasp front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The Gulf Medal was awarded to personnel for service in the areas of operations in the Middle East.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the desert landscape and the three services.

    To apply for the medal with clasp '16 Jan to 28 Feb 1991', the applicant must have:

    • Seven days' continuous service between 16 Jan and 28 Feb 1991
    • Served in the area of operations as defined in the regulations

    To apply for the medal with clasp '2 Aug 1990', the applicant must have:

    • Been a member of the Kuwait Liaison Team
    • Served in Kuwait on 2 August 1990

    Kuwaiti Liberation Medal and the Saudi Liberation of Kuwait Medal

    The governments of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia issued these medals to the allied personnel who had taken part in the liberation of Kuwait.

    The Queen granted permission for British service personnel to accept, but not wear, these medals.

    Operational Service Medal – Iraq and Syria

    Operational Service medal in Iraq and Syria (Picture: MOD).

    The Operational Service Medal (OSM) Iraq and Syria is awarded to personnel who completed operational service in or over the landmass of Iraq and Syria, or provided a significant and direct contribution outside of Iraq and Syria, to Operation Shader since 9 August 2014 (end date to be decided).

    The colours of the ribbon represent the large number of airframes used in the operation, and the three services.

    Personnel can apply for the medal with or without a clasp.

    If they receive the Iraq and Syria clasp, it should be worn on the ribbon of the medal, symbolising the risk and rigour of the task.

    Operational Service Medal – Sierra Leone

    Sierra Leone Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Operational Service Medal (OSM) Sierra Leone is awarded to personnel who completed operational service in Sierra Leone or the Joint Operational Area between 5 May 2000 and 31 July 2002.

    A silver rosette may be issued for service on Operations Maidenly and Barras.

    The rosette is worn on the ribbon of the OSM.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the jungle and the three services.

    Operational Service Medal – Afghanistan

    The Afghanistan Medal with Clasp front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The Operational Service Medal (OSM) Afghanistan is awarded to personnel who complete operational service on or in support of, operations in Afghanistan from 11 September 2001.

    Personnel who are currently serving will automatically receive the medal.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the landscape of Afghanistan and the three services.

    Operational Service Medal – Democratic Republic of Congo

    The Democratic Republic of the Congo Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Operational Service Medal (OSM) Democratic Republic of Congo (DROC) is awarded to personnel who completed operational service in Bunia in the Ituri Province in the Democratic Republic of Congo between 14 June and 10 September 2003.

    The Operational Service Medal will be issued with a DROC clasp which should be worn on the ribbon.

    The colours of the ribbon represent the landscape of DROC and the three services.

    Iraq Medal

    The Iraq Medal with 19 March to 28 April 2003 Clasp front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The Iraq medal is awarded to personnel who completed operational service in Iraq between 20 January 2003 and 22 May 2011.

    Personnel can apply for the medal with or without a clasp.

    If they receive the Iraq and Syria clasp, it should be worn on the ribbon of the medal.

    General Service Medal 2008

    The General Service Medal 2008 Medal with Southern Asia Clasp front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The General Service Medal (GSM) 2008 is awarded to Army, RAF, Royal Navy and Royal Marines personnel who served on operations from 1 January 2008 in the following geographical areas:

    • Eastern Africa
    • Western Africa
    • Arabian Peninsula
    • Northern Africa
    • Southern Asia

    If the application is successful, the recipient be awarded the GSM with a clasp for the relevant geographical area.

    If the recipient becomes eligible for further clasp, it should be added to the GSM medal ribbon, worn above the first clasp.

    Ebola Medal

    Ebola Medal for service in West Africa front and back (Picture: MOD).

    The Ebola Medal is awarded for service in the Joint Operational Area within West Africa between 23 March 2014 and 29 March 2016.

    Applications for the Ebola Medal are no longer being processed.

    The Operational Service Medal for Afghanistan 

    The Operational Service Medal Afghanistan to honour Kabul evacuation heroes on Operation Pitting 18012022 CREDIT MOD.jpg
    The Operational Service Medal Afghanistan to honour Kabul evacuation heroes on Operation Pitting (Picture: MOD).

    Armed Forces personnel deployed to support the evacuation from Afghanistan in August 2021 will receive special medals for their contribution.

    The Operational Service Medal Afghanistan has its own distinctive clasp and is to be awarded to members of the Royal Navy, British Army and Royal Air Force for their efforts in Operation Pitting.

    It was the largest humanitarian aid operation in more than 70 years, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) said.

    After Op Pitting's completion, there were discussions over whether the personnel involved should receive medals for their role.

    The MOD said at the time that the awarding of medals, which would go against the precedent of eligible operations lasting 30 days, would require "lengthy consideration".

    Jubilee medals

    HM The Queen's Silver Jubilee Medal 1977

    HM The Queen's Silver Jubilee Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Silver Jubilee Medal was awarded to personnel to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's accession.

    The MOD Medal Office no longer issues this medal.

    HM The Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal 2002

    HM The Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Golden Jubilee Medal was awarded to personnel to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's accession.

    The medal is issued unnamed.

    HM The Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal 2012

    HM The Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Diamond Jubilee Medal was awarded to personnel to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's accession.

    The medal is issued unnamed.

    Current Meritorious and Long Service medals

    Meritorious Service Medal

    The Meritorious Service Medal (MSM) recognises long-term service in the Armed Forces of non-commissioned ranks.

    Officers may be considered immediately after commissioning.

    The medal is only issued to current serving personnel who have been recommended by the commanding officer.

    To be considered, the recipient must:

    • Have 20 years' reckonable service
    • Be at least a substantive sergeant or equivalent
    • Be a holder of the Long Service and Good Conduct Medal
    • Have been judged as 'good, faithful, valuable and meritorious', with conduct judged to be 'irreproachable' throughout

    The Service Boards look for evidence of particular achievements, either in the course of or outside of military duty. These can include:

    • Achievements that benefit the service in the public, for example, community engagement with local councils or cadet forces
    • Achievements in the field of sport
    • Charity work

    A limited number are awarded each year.

    Accumulated Campaign Service Medal

    Accumulated Campaign Service Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Accumulated Campaign Service Medal (ACSM) is awarded to Army, RAF, Royal Navy and Royal Marines personnel to recognise continued campaign service.

    To apply for the ACSM, the applicant must have completed 1,080 days accumulated by 1 January 2008 in theatres which would have merited:

    • A General Service Medal 1962-2007 (Northern Ireland, Air Ops Iraq)
    • An Operational Service Medal (Sierra Leone, Afghanistan)
    • An Iraq Medal

    If aggregated service falls short of 1,080 days by 1 January 2008, the service will go towards the ACSM 2011.

    If the recipient goes on to complete a further 1,080 days aggregated service by 31 December 2007, they will be awarded a bar.

    The bar is worn on the ribbon of the ACSM.

    Accumulated Campaign Service Medal 2011

    The Accumulated Campaign Service Medal 2011 (Picture: MOD).

    The Accumulated Campaign Service Medal (ACSM) 2011 is awarded to Army, RAF, Royal Navy and Royal Marines personnel to recognise continued campaign service.

    To apply for the ACSM 2011, personnel must have completed 720 days' aggregated service and be serving either on or after 1 January 2008.

    Service must have merited:

    • A General Service Medal 1962-2007 (Northern Ireland, Air Ops Iraq)
    • An Operational Service Medal (Sierra Leone, Afghanistan)
    • An Iraq Medal

    If the recipient goes on to complete a further 720 days' aggregated service, they will be awarded a bar.

    The bar is worn on the ribbon of the ACSM. Recipients can receive more than one bar.

    Royal Naval Long Service and Good Conduct Medal

    Royal Navy Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Long Service and Good Conduct (LSGC) Medal for the Royal Navy is awarded to personnel in recognition of long service.

    To qualify, applicants must have, among other requirements, 15 years' reckonable service in the Navy.

    Personnel who are currently serving don't need to apply.

    For every additional 10 years' service with a clear record, recipients will be issued a clasp. 

    Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal

    The Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Long Service and Good Conduct (LSGC) Medal for the Army is awarded to personnel in recognition of long service.

    To qualify, applicants must have, among other requirements, 15 years' reckonable service in the Army.

    Personnel who are currently serving don't need to apply.

    For every additional 10 years' service with a clear record, recipients will be issued a clasp. 

    Royal Air Force Long Service and Good Conduct Medal

    The RAF Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Long Service and Good Conduct (LSGC) Medal for the Royal Air Force is awarded to personnel in recognition of long service.

    To qualify, applicants must have, among other requirements, 15 years of reckonable service in the RAF.

    Personnel who are currently serving don't need to apply.

    For every additional 10 years' service with a clear record, recipients will be issued a clasp. 

    Volunteer Reserves Service Medal

    The Volunteer Reserves Service Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Volunteer Reserves Service Medal (VRSM) replaced the separate medals that used to be issued to personnel of the separate Reserve Forces in April 1999.

    The VRSM is awarded to both officers and other ranks of the:

    • Royal Naval and Royal Marine Reserves
    • Army Reserves (formerly the Territorial Army)
    • Royal Auxiliary Air Force

    These medals may still be issued for qualifying service ending before 1 April 1999:

    • Royal Naval Reserve Decoration
    • Reserve Long Service and Good Conduct Medal for the Royal Navy and Royal Marine Reserve
    • Territorial Decoration
    • Efficiency Medal for the Army Reserve
    • Air Efficiency Award for the Royal Auxiliary Air Force

    To be considered for the VRSM, applicants must have:

    • Ten years' reckonable service in the Reserve Forces
    • Earned a training bounty in nine out of the 10 qualifying years
    • To have completed a full year's training in the year that the 9th bounty was awarded
    • To be serving in the Volunteer Reserves on or after 1 April 1999

    If recipients go on to serve an additional five years' reckonable service, they will be issued a clasp. The clasp should be worn on the ribbon of the VRSM.

    Cadet Forces Medal

    The Cadet Forces Medal (Picture: MOD).

    The Cadet Forces Medal (CFM) is awarded in recognition of long service in the Cadet Forces.

    To be considered, nominees must:

    • Be an officer or uniformed adult instructor
    • Have 12 years of reckonable service

    At the discretion of Service Boards, the following are not counted as breaks in the continuity of service for the medal:

    • Any break which does not exceed 6 months
    • Breaks of up to three years by reason of a change in place of residence or changing in civilian employment

    Up to three years’ service with any of the following may be used towards the CFM if it’s not been used towards another medal:

    • Reserve Forces
    • Regular Forces
    • Officer Training Corps
    • University Air Squadrons

    If the recipient goes on to complete a further six years’ service, they will be issued a clasp (it doesn’t need to be continuous).

    The clasp should be worn on the ribbon of the CFM.

    Recipients can only be awarded this medal on recommendation, not an application.

    The Elizabeth Cross: Died on Operations Recognition Award

    The Elizabeth Cross and miniature (Picture: MOD).

    Applications can be made for both the Elizabeth Cross and Memorial Scroll.

    The Elizabeth Cross and Memorial Scroll are granted to the next of kin of regular, reserve or Royal Fleet Auxiliary personnel who have died on operations, or as a result of an act of terrorism since 1 January 1948:

    • While serving on an operation in which personnel received a Campaign Medal, GSM or OSM
    • While serving on an operation in which personnel received a UN, NATO (or other international body) or another nations' campaign medal in the absence of a UK medal
    • As a result of an act of terrorism where the available evidence suggests they were targeted because of their membership in the UK Armed Forces
    • On a non-medal earning operational task where death has been caused by the inherent high risk of the task
    • A subsequent and premature death as a result of an injury or illness attributed to the circumstances outlined above.

    An additional Memorial Scroll only is available to the following (or their legal successors) where they are not the next of kin:

    • The parents of the deceased
    • The spouse or partner of the deceased, or someone who had a substantive relationship with the deceased (a substantive relationship is generally based on joint financial commitment and will have to be proved by the applicant).

    Order of wear

    There are strict rules surrounding the wearing of medals and decorations.

    The Medals Office can be contacted if there is a query about the order of wear.

    Wearing of medals

    Official decorations, medals or emblems should only be worn by those who are entitled to and have been approved for acceptance and wear.

    Unofficial medals should not be worn with official orders, decorations and medals.

    The next of kin of a deceased service person can wear their relative's decorations and medals as a mark of remembrance.

    It is custom to wear medals on the right breast in civilian dress only, official approval is not required to wear a relative's medals.

    Current serving personnel should not wear a relative's medals or unofficial medals whilst wearing a uniform.