Stolen Medal For Sale

We had a very similar situation, a relative sold off our Great Grandfathers medals which included 1st and 2nd Boer War and WW1 medals without any consultation of the rest of the family. They appeared again years later on ebay but were too expensive for myself and my dad to win the auction. My dad did eventually get in touch with the final purchaser to ask for first refusal if he ever sells them on but we are not that hopeful of a good outcome.
My great Grandad's medals, still in the little cardboard boxes with wax seal, were in my Dad's loft.

He rented the house out to the son of a friend; turned out to be a real waster. Medal boxes still in loft.


I saw the medals (and some 1950s Richmal Crompton "William" books with an uncle's name in, inscribed as birthday presents) in the local indoor market. Seller was outraged at the suggestion he was selling stolen goods; threatened to call the police because I was slanderous (!). He calmed down eventually when l named the waster, obviously realised he'd been dealt a raw hand; waster was then in prison and well known locally. Took the goods off him with a grudging hand shake.


One of the things that really pissed me off was the stupidity of the thief. In the original packaging, with letters, the medals were worth ten times the value of them on their own. Ah well.
 
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How much was the medal being sold for? Because 2 x easyy jet flight + other transport and a day off must have cost a bit.
He wanted £350 -- £450 for the auction estimate.Easyjet £71 return! Plus a day out in Newcastle.
 
He wanted £350 -- £450 for the auction estimate.Easyjet £71 return! Plus a day out in Newcastle.
Id have paid 500 quid to avoid going.
 

HE117

LE
Technically, aren't service details milled, rather than engraved on British medals?
Before (I think) 2004, medals had the details impressed into the rim using a rolling press technique where the medal was rolled over a row of dies.

In 2004 the Medal office invested in a pulsed laser engraving machine, which has been used ever since..

What you want to call it is up to you.. If you are curious, I would ask a member of the Parachute Regiment to demonstrate "milling" to you. You should make sure you observe closely..!
 
Before (I think) 2004, medals had the details impressed into the rim using a rolling press technique where the medal was rolled over a row of dies.

In 2004 the Medal office invested in a pulsed laser engraving machine, which has been used ever since..

What you want to call it is up to you.. If you are curious, I would ask a member of the Parachute Regiment to demonstrate "milling" to you. You should make sure you observe closely..!
If I recall correctly, the machine that had been in use dated from the Grest War.
 
A few years ago my brother in law's father died. His merry widow (BiL's step mother) promptly sold his grand fathers first war medals, within weeks of the death and deliberately intended to prevent them remaining within the family
Apparently perfectly legal because his late father trusted his wife to divide the estate as requested

Not a large set but did include an MC. The widow got a few grand for them, the estate was in the millions, All done completely out of spite

Eventually retrieved after turning up on Fleabay but had to be bought back
An all too common story, I'm afraid, or taken away in a house clearance or hoofed into a skip. Its ad to see medals in charity shops, knowing that they will have inevitably been found in a deceased estate house clearance.
 
He wanted £350 -- £450 for the auction estimate.Easyjet £71 return! Plus a day out in Newcastle.
Was it the dealer on Mosely Street in Newcastle?
 
Ok, final update for closure of the subject.

Had a call back from the Police who were very interested, but then had another call back saying that as it was nearly 20 years ago, it would be hard to deal with and that they felt it was now a matter for civil remedy as I'd located it.

Sent a letter at the end of December to the dealer outlining the facts and that he had no good title. He disagreed and said that if I wanted it I'd need to buy it.

Another letter, again outlining my position and that I'd rather deal with it out of the courts but that I would go down that route if I were forced to do so.

The dealer called me ten days ago and had a rant that he didn't know it was stolen, but that he would give it back, only, if I collected it in person and showed appropriate ID.

He called my bluff thinking I wouldn't travel from Wiltshire to Newcastle.

Thank goodness for cheap Easyjet flights. His face was a picture when he realised who I was and what I was there for.

I know that he took legal advice from his solicitor, and I can only assume he was told that he would lose if it went to court. Civil cases like this are "On the balance of probabilities " and I had a very strong case.

I have the medal back. Its had its mounting removed for displaying.

I'm happy, he's not. It's a harsh world, but his losses need to be recovered from whomever he got it from, I'm afraid.

To be honest, he is a professional dealer in these things. He knows the score and I think he was hoping that I didn't.
The police say "since you've done this much of the job we didn't have the capacity to follow, go ahead and finish it yourself." Nice.

As to the dealer, he should be paying for the remounting, as well as compensating you for the loss of your original ribbon, which obviously has sentimental value, having removed such after he was made aware the medal was not his to sell.
 

soleil

War Hero
Before (I think) 2004, medals had the details impressed into the rim using a rolling press technique where the medal was rolled over a row of dies.

In 2004 the Medal office invested in a pulsed laser engraving machine, which has been used ever since..
Yes, they introduced the new machinery when the individual Medal Offices for the separate services merged. At this point, the Army Medal Office in Droitwich Spa closed as did the Navy's one in Gosport. The new MoD Medal Office was created at RAF Innsworth/Imjin Barracks in Gloucester and, at that stage, tenders were invited for the provision of laser engraving services.
 

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer
FFS dont show the bling the walters will be getting a full strength hard on with it being so cheap!
Medallists in the UK will happily provide most medals at a reasonable cost, and with appropriate service details on the rim.

Further to my earlier comments about Charity shops selling medals that they receive in house clearances etc. Fewer are turning up as rapacious relatives have monetarised them, building on the last few years of commemorations and when charities do get them, they generally sell them on line to maximise the return. Still sad, though.
 

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer

Type 66

Old-Salt
I had a problem a few years back with a certain medal company in London. Beware there are people out there who scan the internet for people looking for grandads medals, they make up a set and even put details on the rim, and all of a sudden you get an email out of the blue......this is what happened to me.....66 we think we have found your grandads medals....it is on sale at a certain london medal 'shop', however we believe that someone has just bought them....if you are quick you could email said Shop and they will contact the prospective buyer and hopefully he will let them go to you. So now you are in flap mode not thinking straight and dive staaight in and lo and behold you get them!! On receiving them you look at the engraving and all have the same indents where the engraver has pressed a little too hard. One medal was from 1931 Afghan NW Frontier and the latest was palestine 1947........with exactly the same indents on the engravings. Beware folks there are people out there preying on sentimentality.
 

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer
I had a problem a few years back with a certain medal company in London. Beware there are people out there who scan the internet for people looking for grandads medals, they make up a set and even put details on the rim, and all of a sudden you get an email out of the blue......this is what happened to me.....66 we think we have found your grandads medals....it is on sale at a certain london medal 'shop', however we believe that someone has just bought them....if you are quick you could email said Shop and they will contact the prospective buyer and hopefully he will let them go to you. So now you are in flap mode not thinking straight and dive staaight in and lo and behold you get them!! On receiving them you look at the engraving and all have the same indents where the engraver has pressed a little too hard. One medal was from 1931 Afghan NW Frontier and the latest was palestine 1947........with exactly the same indents on the engravings. Beware folks there are people out there preying on sentimentality.
Which company ?
 
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