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Medal Identification

Blanking has been a 'thing' for many years and it isn't confined to UK:

1599653842868.png


Sgt Bob Buick RAR, MM for the Battle of Long Tan, August 1966. His MM was Gazetted and awarded some time before the physical award of the Queen's S Vietnam medal and the RVN Campaign Star.

WSC in 1946:

1599654114627.png


His group has been remounted with his WWII awards blanked: the ribbons had been issued but the Stars and Medals had not
 
Where you were 'invited' to open an account with Coutts and fitted up by Gieves, Meyer & Mortimer and suchlike. I think somebody should take Ray Huggins to task over it and see what happens....
Fitted up being the operative words.
Blasted Coxs & Kings got me but prior to Meyer & Mortimer getting the Jock Div uniforms we got a wee trip to Wm Jardine in Forth Street, Edinburgh - nice little trip North on the sleeper.
 

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer
Blanking has been a 'thing' for many years and it isn't confined to UK:

View attachment 503096

Sgt Bob Buick RAR, MM for the Battle of Long Tan, August 1966. His MM was Gazetted and awarded some time before the physical award of the Queen's S Vietnam medal and the RVN Campaign Star.

WSC in 1946:

View attachment 503097

His group has been remounted with his WWII awards blanked: the ribbons had been issued but the Stars and Medals had not
Excellent picture of WSC.
I'd heard of and seen photos of blanking before, though only in Commonwealth or x-Empire countries.
Never saw it in the SADF, and what the SANDF do is a fascinating to behold...
8O
 

XPara Mugg

War Hero
Are you saying that the medal in question is an Official French Decoration. That is, one authorised by the President of the Republic of France (as Fount of Honour)?
If so, I can fully understand why permission to wear such an award would be granted.

As far as I am aware, this medal is from a French veterans association/union and not granted for wear by the Head of State of France. If so the medal is unofficial. In which case, I doubt that Her Majesty would grant permission to wear.

These two organisations control the firing of military firearms by civilians. If you want to fire a firearm of military calibre in France, a Mouser, Bren, No4, or even something more up to date, such a thing would be illegal under French law. By doing it under the auspices of: National Union of Reserve Officers (UNOR) and the National Federation of Reserve NCOs (FNASOR), it is possible.

They seem to occupy a position which is formally recognised by the French state to perform official functions. Perhaps it's a bit like TAVRA/RCFAs but closer to La Ministere de la Défense. And they both award medals which are recognised my the French State.

I have seen these medals worn in uniform by serving French officers and NCOs. I have been present when they have been presented. They are usually for supporting this particular discipline (Tir Aux Armes Reglementaires) or Practical rifle/pistol (Tir Sportif de Vitesse) but also for activities in support of reserve activities more widely.

Perhaps AcSM Huggins had organised some liaison stuff, a lecture tour or even just an exchange visit to The Royal Hospital. Perhaps he was picked out as a figurehead to receive it, the French are much more generous with their gongs.

Bottom line; it will be the legitimate award, of a recognised honour, by an organisation of the French State. And I'm pretty sure The Royal Hospital Chelsea won't have got it wrong.

Edit: Having looked again at the date of the award. Perhaps it was a thank you from French Reserve Officers attending something at Sandhurst or the lecture tour option.
 
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dlrg

LE
Thanks for that @XPara Mugg. Very informative. However the medal worn by Ray Huggins (Cross of Recognition) is issued by the French National Union of Retired Non Commissioned Officers - UNSOR.
I am not sure that this Association is "an organisation of the French State". It seems to be listed among 'Les Assciatives'


See introduction (lst & last paragraphs) & page two for medal illustration.
Rough translation here:

"In addition to official Orders and Medals, there are unofficial medals. These were created and are allocated by Associations Law 1901, which in the 19th century were commonly called "Sociètés.

However, article 8 of the decree of 06/11/1920 specifies that: "the wearing of the badges of honorary distinctions, created and awarded by associations, or ribbons or rosettes which commemorate them, is only authorized in the meetings of these associations."


I'm sure somewhere there will be an explanation.
 
These two organisations control the firing of military firearms by civilians. If you want to fire a firearm of military calibre in France, a Mouser, Bren, No4, or even something more up to date, such a thing would be illegal under French law. By doing it under the auspices of: National Union of Reserve Officers (UNOR) and the National Federation of Reserve NCOs (FNASOR), it is possible.

They seem to occupy a position which is formally recognised by the French state to perform official functions. Perhaps it's a bit like TAVRA/RCFAs but closer to La Ministere de la Défense. And they both award medals which are recognised my the French State.

I have seen these medals worn in uniform by serving French officers and NCOs. I have been present when they have been presented. They are usually for supporting this particular discipline (Tir Aux Armes Reglementaires) or Practical rifle/pistol (Tir Sportif de Vitesse) but also for activities in support of reserve activities more widely.

Perhaps AcSM Huggins had organised some liaison stuff, a lecture tour or even just an exchange visit to The Royal Hospital. Perhaps he was picked out as a figurehead to receive it, the French are much more generous with their gongs.

Bottom line; it will be the legitimate award, of a recognised honour, by an organisation of the French State. And I'm pretty sure The Royal Hospital Chelsea won't have got it wrong.

Edit: Having looked again at the date of the award. Perhaps it was a thank you from French Reserve Officers attending something at Sandhurst or the lecture tour option.
Sandhurst regularly had exchange contingents over from Germany and Saint-Cyr so it could be a leaving present as he marched off after his tour as AcSM. He has been seen so often by the great and the good it is both unlikely he got it wrong, or they had the balls to tell him to take it off! I certainly wouldn't, I am still traumatised after he bounced me off the Old College square - idle arms I tell you.
 
Blast I thought this one would show his full bar, this was on Sovereigns Parade in July 77 when I passed out with SMC 14. Don't remember seeing him with the French gong, will check the photo albums later.
 

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dlrg

LE
For ye of little faith, and @dlrg

There is a new thread https://www.arrse.co.uk/community/threads/rmas-instructors.30055/

Go to post #4 then to the attached photo of RMAS Amiens Coy 1977. Ray Huggins is wearing his six ribbons, two over four.

This shows he was wearing the French medal whilst still serving in the army.

Cheers for that.

I wonder, how can Huggins be wearing a medal ribbon for retired NCOs when, as you say, he is still serving.

Further, if unrestricted/restricted permission to wear this medal /ribbon has been granted, that permission would surely have appeared in the London Gazette. I am not aware of anything to the contrary.
 

Bodenplatte

War Hero
Cheers for that.

I wonder, how can Huggins be wearing a medal ribbon for retired NCOs when, as you say, he is still serving.

Further, if unrestricted/restricted permission to wear this medal /ribbon has been granted, that permission would surely have appeared in the London Gazette. I am not aware of anything to the contrary.

I have always accepted without question that a man of the status and propriety as Ray Huggins would not wear a medal that he is not entitled to wear, and that he must therefore have been given appropriate permission.

He has been wearing that CdeR for 44 years now, as a British soldier and as an In Pensioner. In all that time somebody would have pulled him up over it if he were not entitled. The In Pensioners can be a picky lot, and many of them gave many years of service, often in operational areas, yet only have one or two medals to show for it. (A friend of mine died about twelve years ago. We knew well what sort of operational experience he had, as he was parent regiment Kings (Liverpool) briefly before their amalgamation with the Manchesters, transferring to the Special Air Service Regiment at an early stage of his service. When his coffin came into the church there were only two medals, a 1918 GSM and a 1962 GSM. Mind you, there were eleven bars in total !)


A foreign order or gallantry award would be gazetted in the same manner as a similar British award would be (I have had a look for, and found, Fred Carne's US DSC to provide an example) but I don't think any sort of commemorative medal, be it British or foreign) is Gazetted.
 

Bodenplatte

War Hero
Blast I thought this one would show his full bar, this was on Sovereigns Parade in July 77 when I passed out with SMC 14. Don't remember seeing him with the French gong, will check the photo albums later.

By July 77 he should have had six gongs, viz MBE, GSM 1918 (Palestine), 1977 Jubilee, LS&GC, MSM and that French one. I seem to recall from earlier searches that he got the French one in 1976, and he seems to be wearing the ribbon in that Amiens Coy pic which is dated April 1977. Tantalisingly the last two medals are obscured by the Duke of Kent in your photo.

I don't really know what we are trying to prove with all this - as I have said, I absolutely accept his entitlement to wear the medal and I feel a bit uncomfortable with any suggestion to the contrary.
 

dlrg

LE
By July 77 he should have had six gongs, viz MBE, GSM 1918 (Palestine), 1977 Jubilee, LS&GC, MSM and that French one. I seem to recall from earlier searches that he got the French one in 1976, and he seems to be wearing the ribbon in that Amiens Coy pic which is dated April 1977. Tantalisingly the last two medals are obscured by the Duke of Kent in your photo.

I don't really know what we are trying to prove with all this - as I have said, I absolutely accept his entitlement to wear the medal and I feel a bit uncomfortable with any suggestion to the contrary.

I can understand your passion and your conviction that Huggins is entitled to wear this medal. However, as you quite rightly say.

".. I don't think any sort of commemorative medal, be it British or foreign is Gazetted".

From an academic perspective, I would like to know when Huggins was given this medal. Why he was given this medal and when was he given permission to wear the medal. These are not unreasonable questions to ask. I fail to see why this issue is uncomfortable.
 
I can understand your passion and your conviction that Huggins is entitled to wear this medal. However, as you quite rightly say.

".. I don't think any sort of commemorative medal, be it British or foreign is Gazetted".

From an academic perspective, I would like to know when Huggins was given this medal. Why he was given this medal and when was he given permission to wear the medal. These are not unreasonable questions to ask. I fail to see why this issue is uncomfortable.
Because he is who he is!
Not sure there are many who would question him, his integrity or his right to wear. You might be an academic with an academic interest - so you ask him!
 

dlrg

LE
Because he is who he is!
Not sure there are many who would question him, his integrity or his right to wear. You might be an academic with an academic interest - so you ask him!

This is a medal thread. Its purpose being to discuss things medalic, share information and to learn etc.
Your dismissive reply and indeed the somewhat emotional reply from Bodenplatte would indicate, to me, that you also do not know the answer re: his right to wear.

Because he is who he is! Is not good enough.
 
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Bodenplatte

War Hero
I can understand your passion and your conviction that Huggins is entitled to wear this medal. However, as you quite rightly say.

".. I don't think any sort of commemorative medal, be it British or foreign is Gazetted".

From an academic perspective, I would like to know when Huggins was given this medal. Why he was given this medal and when was he given permission to wear the medal. These are not unreasonable questions to ask. I fail to see why this issue is uncomfortable.
 

ancient_lbv

Old-Salt
I can understand your passion and your conviction that Huggins is entitled to wear this medal. However, as you quite rightly say.

".. I don't think any sort of commemorative medal, be it British or foreign is Gazetted".

From an academic perspective, I would like to know when Huggins was given this medal. Why he was given this medal and when was he given permission to wear the medal. These are not unreasonable questions to ask. I fail to see why this issue is uncomfortable.
Er, Malta GC commemorative medal? Gazetted with unrestricted permission to wear.
 

dlrg

LE
Er, Malta GC commemorative medal? Gazetted with unrestricted permission to wear.
Quite right. The 'Commemorative' in this case being a part of the Medal title.

What I and I think Bodenplatte are refering to are the 'unofficial' Type (None-State awards or commercally available stuff).
 
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Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer
Not sure-it doesn't come up too well at a higher resolution.

As a SWAG? possibly an older style British Legion lapel badge.
It would seem far more likely.
 

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