Grandads medals

Discussion in 'Military History and Militaria' started by angular, Jun 9, 2009.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. I have, from my Grandfather's files, a metal bar with a pin on the back (presumably to go on a uniform or suit jacket) mounted with medal ribbons. There are the ribbons for the 1939-45 star, the Africa Star with the 8 sewn on, the France and Germany Star and a piece of khaki cloth with his oak leaf for the MiD he got at El Alamein. Elsewhere he has about a foot of the ribbon for the Italy Star; I don't know if he served in Italy, although he may well have gone to Sicily for a while after Tunisia.

    Does the order of the ribbons indicate when the pin was put together? Would there have been a time when the medals on the pin would have been issued, but the Italy Star and the 1939-45 War Medal, to which he was presumably also entitled, would not have been available? Should he have put the oak leaf on the Africa Star, or does the 8 take precedence?
  2. The MoD didn’t issue bars such as you describe, they issued whole full size medals as entitled to and (re general issue) if claimed. Ribbon bars have various origins which may have been arranged by the winner or a regiment or Veterans organisation – lots of variation. The ‘8’ for 8th Army suggests he probably spent time in the Italy Star entitlement area – but not necessarily. Knowing about his specific Unit would help though some were retained in N. Africa or returned to the UK during the Italian/CMF campaigns?

    If the MiD Oak Leaf was awarded for 39-45 service it goes on the War Medal ribbon. If no War Medal was awarded (which seems unlikely in this case) it is worn separately directly after the medal ribbons. Post 45 hostilities is can we worn on the campaign ribbon.

  3. Thanks No. 9. I know he was in Greece/Crete/Egypt/Libya/Tunisia, then Belgium, but I don't know about what he was doing in 1943. As he was a baker in the RASC, it's difficult to track exact locations of his unit, and he was transferred at some point.
  4. Ref: Grandads medals,
    The medals should be worn in the order they were won, i would assume. Unless he has a gallantry medal, which would always take precedence. The MiD Oak leaf should surely go on his Africa Star as this was the theatre where he won it. The 39 - 45 Star was a GS medal, like the Victory medal or the British War Medal issued in WW1. I am in no doubt that your Grandad was in Italy. When the N. African campaign was over, many of the divisions were sent to Italy to fight over there. He may have been at Sicily, Anzio or Cassino and from there Rome.

    Wherever he was, he was certainly a busy lad!
  5. The 8th army clasp (denoted by "8" on ribbon) specifically was awarded for service with the 8th Army between 23 October 1942 and 12 May 1943 in North Africa (fighting Italians).

    He could well be entitled to the Italy star too. Up to 5 stars could be earned, with a complicated system of claps being worn on some stars to indicate entitlement to other stars. In this case, the Africa & Italy stars could both be awarded.

    The correct order for the wearing of WWII medals is as follows:-
    1939-45 Star
    Atlantic Star
    Air Crew Europe Star
    Africa Star
    Pacific Star
    Burma Star
    Italy Star
    France and Germany Star
    Defence Medal
    War Medal, 1939-45

    You could always apply for his records to see where & when he did serve & get his medal record.
  6. these were made up at the end just after the war when not all the medals were autherised, for example the 1939-45 war medal was the last medal authorised and the last star was the italy star, which interestingly service in greece and yougslavia got you the italy star too

    the MiD embalem (oak leaf) would at that time be correctly worn sepeatly and when the war medal was authorised the MiD was put on that medals ribbon
  7. msr

    msr LE

  8. Well you live and learn...Why would the MiD go on the 39-45 star and not the Africa star? That was where it was won after all. It doesn't make much sense to place it anywhere else, other than the relevant campaign medal?
  9. TalaveraTom, bit pointless posting bollox? If you don't know what you're talking about, better just let people think that then post and remove any doubt. :wink:

    angular, appreciate the problem with the Italy Star if you can’t pinpoint any CMF service for the qualifying periods of 10 Jul 1943 - 17 Aug 1943 and 3 Sep 1943 - 8 May 1945? Unfortunately just another gov cheapskate measure not to include the first Greek and the Crete campaigns of 41.

    Did you have any lucky looking up the ‘Golden List’?

    Hairy_Fairy – ”….8th Army between 23 October 1942 and 12 May 1943 in North Africa (fighting Italians).” Not really, Rommel and the Africa Korps landed/got into action Feb 1942. Was there a different medal/ribbon/bar/clasp/button/rosette for fighting Germans then? 8O

  11. MID on 28 day medal!The War Medal.[marq=up]

    Attached Files: