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  1. Thanks to S. Astill (Curator – Military Collections, Exhibitions and Special Projects of the South West Heritage Trust ( who gave me this response: "Somerset became the temporary home to many Belgian refugees fleeing their country following the German attack of August 1914. Committees were set up in towns across the county to raise funds to support the refugee families during their stay. This medal as awarded to people who supported the committee in Taunton through fundraising or other charity work." Vincent
  2. Thanks for the replies. The e-mail is on the way and when I receive a respons I will let you know. Vincent
  3. I recently received this medal but I'm unable to find more information about it. It has a ribbon in the Belgian colors but the design feels British. My best guess is that it is an unofficial medal given to those involved with the aid of Belgians (possibly refugees) in England (Taunton, Somerset?). All information about this medal or this Belgian Committee is welcome. Kind regards,Vincent
  4. The "Carte du Feux" (or Vuurkaart, Firecard) was created by Royal Decree on 14 may 1932 and was awarded to Belgian soldiers who served at least 12 months in an unit that was in contact with the enemy. This time could be reduced to 9 months in certain situations. So to answer your first question: it was created by the Belgian government. The "Golden Book of the Firecard" was first published in 1933 or 1934 and contains the names of those who held the "firecard". It is not complete because the holders must send an application if they wanted to be mentioned in the book. If I'm not mistaken they received this personilized medal when they buy the book. The difference between real ones and fake, I can not tell you. But since this medal is not very expensive (25-30 euros in Belgium) I would not worry about it too much. I have seen silver(ed) ones but I don't know if they are reproductions or custom made by the recipient. Maybe they can help you on the website Unfortunately it is only in dutch but you can send them an e-mail. Your medal belonged to soldier Armand -L.-F.C. Le Roye who served with the 12th regiment of the line. He is mentioned in the 1937 edition of the "Golden Book of the Firecard" pg. 191 (with picture). He had 5 frontstripes, received the Warcross with palm, Victory Medal and Commemorative Medal of the War 1914-1918. All this can be found on the website Guy mentioned: click on "goldebooks online" -> "1937" -> and then search page 191 (he's on the top row, second picture). NOTE that it also says "Ostend". This might be his place of birth but it is not certain since the placed mentioned is the place they lived when they applied for the book. Example: My great-grandfather was born in Haacht but "Zaventem" is mentioned because he lived there at that time. Vincent
  5. 60 years ... that must be a hell of a collection you got. I hope you can find the medal and many other "hidden" or "lost" teasures . Don't feel shy to share the rare or uncommon ones with us . Vincent
  6. @922F You spoke about seeing cased ones in 1994. Do you, by any chance, remember the box it was in. Mine came in a red one with a crown on it (J. Fonson) and I presume this is not the original box but one for the Order of the Crown. But since I haven't seen a cased example of this medal I can't be certain. Vincent
  7. Is this the veteran's medal that you mean? If they did use this it should be easy to recognize. According to an article by Borné it was created by the National Union of Military Veterans of Leopold II (wich was founded in 1947). Vincent
  8. According to Borné this medal was created by King Leopold III by Decree on 10 may 1934, aiming to award those who served Albert I, who died on 17 january 1934. It was awarded to those who served in the royal households of Albert I and/or queen Elisabeth (1909-1934) and/or the households when they were the Count and Countess of Flanders (1905-1909). So it might be possible that they were all awarded during the month may of 1934, since no one could qualify after that date. Unfortunately Borné does not mention it. Vincent
  9. Picture 1 is the front of the medal and the "A" is the revers. (If this is what you mean). I'm very interested in the difference between a copy and a real one (and if possible, the documentation or source of it) since I have the medal in my collection. (see pics) Vincent
  10. The uniform(s) with ribbons ... the medals ... the documents ... and all of the same person Now I'm jealous As for the regulations ... it doesn't suprise me that an officer (or a soldier) doesn't know them. We are medal enthusiasts here and we have trouble knowing what medal comes before an other. And to be honest, I don't think anyone in Belgium really cares (exept us). Most of the Royal Decrees that create a medal that I've seen just state: "The medal comes directly behind ..." or "... comes after all medals already existing". So first you have to find all Royal Decrees and then you must puzzle them into a list The only full list that I found was one created by a medal collector (Hendrik Meerschaert) on his website, but this site is down . Vincent
  11. I don't think so. The hierarchy should be: National Orders (with their own hierarchy, wich is correct in this picture) Medals of the two World Wars and the Korean War Militray Decoration (article 4) [10th in this picture. It could be that this medal precede also the war medals but I'm not sure.] Military Cross Military Decoration [...] Foreign Medals (in chronological order as they are received) Question to the members of the Belgian Army: Since I haven't served in the Belgian Army I wonder if it is possible to serve at least 10 years as a soldier or NCO (Military Decoration 2nd class) and than, at least, 25 years as an officer (Military Cross 1st class)? Here are some usefull links for this matter: (all are in Dutch, last two can be translated in English, German and French on the top left) (Dutch) (English) Below: Can be translated in English by clicking "En" on the top left. (Hierarchy of the National Orders) Vincent
  12. They should be, although exeptions can be granted due to courtesy. But note that in this case the Belgian medals are not correct worn either. It should be (foreign medals exluded): Officer cross's (Order of Leopold, Order of the Crown and Order of Leopold II), War Cross, Yser medal, Firecross, Victory Medal, Commemorative Medal of the War 14-18, Military Cross. I'm not sure if he should wear the cross of officer in the Order of Leopold, Order of the Crown and Order of Leopold II since he has higher decoration of those orders. In my opinion the crossed swords (on the ribbon of the cross of Officer in the Order of Leopold II) should be on the sash of the Grand Cross of the Order of Leopold II, his highest decoration. Vincent
  13. If you (ever) find one you may let me know :). You find some medals on one website, a few others on an other website, forums, ... . There are just so many unofficial medals in Belgium that it is very hard (or even impossible) to make such a website. There was once a website with a lot of them but he quitted because many of the information and pictures were used without his approval. He still (or at least a few years ago) awnsered questions by e-mail. See his website: Maybe he can help you. Vincent
  14. I found it on an other, french, forum (Stuka you beat me by a minute :)) It's a medal from the Athos group (a Belgian resistance group).