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"Ferry House in Goring-on-Thames, located directly adjacent to the River Thames."

So he was the Göring on Thames of England?? ;-)

I know, it seems somewhat ironic he lived in a place that had the name of his arch rival!

The point I was trying to make, that unfortunately, there were persons in the "establishment" that felt at that period of the war, carpet bombing was not a specific requirement, carpet bombing by it's very nature is indiscrimate, throw his teddy in the corner, possibly but I suspect that it was more to do with the lack of recognition for his men than a desire to be covered in bling.

Special medals for all other services, maybe not, existing ones would cover that, however a specific bar to wear with say with the 39-45 star would have been enough recognition, (Battle of Britain etc) bar ie "Bomb Disposal", "Ronson tank corps" I believe there is an eigth army bar worn with the Africa star, to denote the Desert Rats, so it could have been done if the political will was there

regards

Alex

Edited by Alex K

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The original concept appeared to be 'theatre' based - so Africa Star, Italy Star, France & Germany Star, Pacific Star & Burma Star - then the addition of an Air Crew Europe Star to cover those who flew over Europe rather than went there boots-on-ground, and the Atlantic Star for those who sailed thereon...

... then the odd special interest group snuck in with 3 different clasps for the Africa Star, and the 'Battle of Britain' one for those who flew in that. To be honest, that's where the Arctic Convoys really belong, a clasp on the Atlantic Star.

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"To be honest, that's where the Arctic Convoys really belong, a clasp on the Atlantic Star."

I personally agree, a clasp would sufficiently cover those that fought in that campaign, even though one could argue that it was more North Sea than Atlantic Ocean. Lets not forget that the Soviets issued commerorative medals to vets for this campaign long before the British Gov ever thought of it or had the politcal interest in doing so,

Edited by Alex K

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Gents

As a grand nephew of a Lancaster mid upper gunner, I will be appying for his bar to his 39-45 star next week. I have heard people debating that it should be a medal, am I concerned about a bar- no. I am only glad he was recognised for his part, which was 35 trips at the latter end of the war. At the end of the war men and women going back to a normal way of life were more interested in getting a job,home and family than recognition of their part during the war. My Grand Uncle fell into that bracket and I applied for his medals about 5 years ago as it was sitting on the MoD medal office for 63 years. The covering letter and medal card were to be honest the main reason for applying, the medals were an extra bonus.

I will let you guys see the end result in due course.

Steve M

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Hi Achern, very interesting to see them in production, I also notice that one of the photo's shows the 1939-45 star ribbon with what looks like a "Bomber Command" clasp, thanks for posting

regards

Alex

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A bit late, but thank you Megan for sharing the news, although issuing a medal like this almost 70 years after the war is certainly controversial.

BTW: does anybody know the place of the new star in the order of precedence - I could not find it anywhere: right behind the Atlantic Star or somewhere else? Also which other stars can it go together with and which it cannot? And finally, which stars can the "BOMBER COMMAND" clasp be attached to?

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This is actually old news, and I am surprised that some of you chaps had not heard about this much earlier - it was first OFFICIALLY announced by the British Prime Minister as long ago as 19 December 2012, and later, confirmed, with the full details, by the Minister of State for Defence on 26 February 2012. Of course, the actual idea for the Star and the Clasp was mooted quite a long time ago. I have already got the application form to Dr. Edwina Ward (the nearest living relative) for her to apply for the BOMBER COMMAND CLASP for Major Edwin Swales, VC, DFC, SAAF, ex RAF 582 Pathfinder Squadron - so that it can be added to his 1939-1945 Star. Note: it will NOT be added to either the Air Crew Europe, nor the F & G Star. Qualification is 60 days, or a completed tour of operations on a Bomber Commend operational unit, and who flew at least one operational sortie on a Bomber Command operational unit between 3.09.1939 and 8.05.1945. There are other criteria for award, if time was shorter than required, for example, being wounded, POW, etc. Major Edwin Swales' medal group is supposed to be held at the National Military History Museum in Saxonwold, Johannesburg. The original medals and VC and DFC are (or should be) in "safe custody" and copies are on display. At least I hope so, and that they have not been subject to some 'affirmative shopping'.........

As far as the ARCTIC STAR is concerned, yes they will be EXACTLY the same as the other eight stars in design, except for the actual naming of the Star, and ribbon. of course. Qualification criteria are for ANY length of service, NORTH of the Arctic Circle (66 degrees 32 minutes north) between 3.09.1939 and 8.05.1945. The Star can be awarded to Navy / Merchant Navy / Air Force / Army / Civilians and Foreign Nationals. Criteria seems simple, anyone to do with the Artic Convoys and their Escorts to North Russia, and their various forms of support and protection will qualify..........even if for only one day........

And for those who say that 70 years later is TOO LATE, then yes, I agree with you. BUT it is NOT unusual: The British Military General Service Medal was authorised in 1847, and issued in 1848 and covered some campaigns going back as far as 1793.This also applies to the Naval General Service Medal (1793-1840) issued from 1848-1849 onwards. There are in fact quite a few British examples of late issue of medals, including the Army of India Medal (1799-1826) issued only in 1851. Check Gordon's "British Battles and Medals" for more such examples.

But BOTH are deserved, I believe (even if late) and will add a great deal of interest to the medal groups of those who qualify.

QUESTION for you ALL: Are only family allowed to apply for the medal or the Clasp? What about cases where the medal groups are now in the hands of collectors, museums, etc ?? An interesting point for discussion, I think.

(The official announcement states: Eligible veterans and next-of-kin are now encourged to apply...............) ???????????????

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ARCTIC STAR - ORDER for WEAR, in WWII Stars

In response to an earlier question by a member (above) I found this on another website.

Of course I cannot guarantee that it is correct, but I must presume that it is:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Have had a reply from the MOD Medal office and the official word order is as said by Worcester Medals

Thank you for your email.

The order of wearing the Stars is as follows:


• 1939-45 Star
• Atlantic Star
Arctic Star
• Air Crew Europe Star
• Africa Star
• Pacific Star
• Burma Star
• Italy Star
• France and Germany Star
• Defence Medal
• War Medal 1939-45

Kind Regards

MOD Medals Office
=================================================================

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It would be interesting to know IF any South Africans, apart from those in, or seconded to, any British forces, for example,

the R.N. or the R.A.F. qualified for either the new Star, or the Bomber Command Clasp. Most South Africans in the R.N.

were those with "British" ancestry, who chose to join the R.N. rather than the S.A. Navy. Likewise, South African Air Force

activities were confined, so far as I am aware, to East and North Africa, and to Italy, Greece and the Middle-East, and not

to North-Western Europe. Those South Africans who were active in N.W. Europe, like 'Sailor' Malan, DSO and Bar, DFC

and Bar; Chris le Roux, DFC and Two Bars; John Nettleton, VC; and Edwin Swales VC and DFC were all with, or had

been seconded to R.A.F. Squadrons. Likewise there may well have been other South Africans in the British Army or the

Royal Navy who may have qualified. (And yes I am aware that Malan and le Roux would not have qualified for the Clasp,

as they were fighter pilots, and not with bomber squadrons).

BUT were there any South Africans, in the S.A.D.F. who qualified for either the Arctic Star or the Bomber Command clasp,

I wonder?? I know that there WERE South Africans who were later involved in the famous Berlin Air Lift - which if you

think about it, was not much different from the Arctic supplies to the Russians. I wonder how long it will be before (or, if at all),

the British authorities decide to follow the American example, for a medal for the Berlin Airlift? (Or a clasp).

A couple of interesting questions, I think. Any ideas?

Actually, to take this matter further, many Brits were so dis-satisfied with the Second World War awards they received, or

in many cases "did not receive", that they "invented" their own UNOFFICIAL MEDALS and AWARDS, through various

veteran associations, mainly. Reference to the Token Books "Medal Yearbook" will reveal some interesting UNOFFICIAL

MEDALS, such as: The NORMANDY Campaign Medal; the ARCTIC Campaign Medal; The MERCHANT NAVAL Service

Medal; The ALLIED EX-POW Medal; The SUEZ Canal Zone Medal; The JORDAN Service Medal; the HONG KONG

Service Medal, the BRITISH FORCES IN GERMANY Medal, The NORTH AFRICAN Service Medal, The DUNKIRK

Medal; the BOMBER COMMAND Medal, The ARABIAN Service Medal and so forth.........

Many of these 'Unofficial' Medals ARE in fact already covered by official medals, clasps or awards (but not all) and

so one wonders why it was felt necessary to have the unofficial awards at all?? Particularly as they are NOT sanctioned

for wear in uniform, or for any "official" use........ And futhermore, who would actually BUY and WEAR these "unofficial"

medals / awards, if they are known to be unofficial and NOT acceptable for wear. I wonder?

But an interesting complication, nevertheless.

David B 1812

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Just for interest, there appears to be a dearth of "Official replacement" Arctic stars on the market at this time, (Official replacements, they've only just started giving them out!!), these appear at first glance to be quite good, and are die struck, so with my 12GBP, incl p&P I bought one complete with miniature, and compared with a known genuine example of an ACE in my collection, what do people think?

To me there are two giveaways

Edited by Alex K

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Just for interest, there appears to be a dearth of "Official replacement" Arctic stars on the market at this time, (Official replacements, they've only just started giving them out!!), these appear at first glance to be quite good, and are die struck, so with my 12GBP, incl p&P I bought one complete with miniature, and compared with a known genuine example of an ACE in my collection, what do people think?

To me there are two giveaways

Interesting. I would however like to see a side by side comparison between an "Issued" and an "Official Replacement" examples of the Arctic Star. The things that jumped out at me in this comparison was the rounded letters of the cipher on the Arctic Star and the thickness of the Area at the top where the suspension loop goes through.

These two differences could simply be due to the fact the Arctic Star was produced some 60 plus years after the ACE.

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Interesting. I would however like to see a side by side comparison between an "Issued" and an "Official Replacement" examples of the Arctic Star. The things that jumped out at me in this comparison was the rounded letters of the cipher on the Arctic Star and the thickness of the Area at the top where the suspension loop goes through.

These two differences could simply be due to the fact the Arctic Star was produced some 60 plus years after the ACE.

I agree that a comparison with a known original award piece would be helpful, but I've yet to see a close-up of an original, (Anyone got one?). To me the main differences are that the actual suspension ring is larger than originals and the ends are not soldered together (Not visible on the example), this has been a trait for other star copies particularly the ACE, secondly and you may need to have it in hand, the Arctic has a slightly "Yellower" hue which may indicate a different metal content.

but as you say, 60 odd years between their respective manufacture could explain some differences. The question for me is I have the complete set of WWii stars medals etc, do I add this to that collection, as it is now part of that series?

regards

edit, attached a large picture of an awarded example being worn, seems to show the more rounded top part for the suspension loop, is the cypher softer difficult to judge, the suspension ring is the same as the others

Edited by Alex K

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I hear what you are saying in regards to the larger,un-solderer suspension ring. However it is my understanding (I will have to look it up for verification) that this is also typical of the later produced Stars, ie, 70's 80's.

Further, it is my understanding the Arctic Star originals are produced at the Royal Mint. Any example produced elsewhere is a copy. I do not have a known original I wonder if contacting the Royal Mint would be an option?

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I hear what you are saying in regards to the larger,un-solderer suspension ring. However it is my understanding (I will have to look it up for verification) that this is also typical of the later produced Stars, ie, 70's 80's.

Further, it is my understanding the Arctic Star originals are produced at the Royal Mint. Any example produced elsewhere is a copy. I do not have a known original I wonder if contacting the Royal Mint would be an option?

It may well be an option, I'll try to see if I get a response, remember the one I posted was assumed to such a copy, it's about determining the scale of authenticity such copies have in relation to the original struck pieces

regards

Edited by Alex K

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Alex, I agree 100%. I am very curious as the one you posted, was posted under the assumption it is a copy. How close to the authentic issued Star IS the question. From what I see, I would think pretty close as I honestly see nothing (when put up against my knowledge of Stars) to call the one you posted a copy.

I have seen one other copy posted elsewhere. It was also apparently a copy, out of Birmingham? It had the 'sheering marks', something most copies lack.

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Alex, I agree 100%. I am very curious as the one you posted, was posted under the assumption it is a copy. How close to the authentic issued Star IS the question. From what I see, I would think pretty close as I honestly see nothing (when put up against my knowledge of Stars) to call the one you posted a copy.

I have seen one other copy posted elsewhere. It was also apparently a copy, out of Birmingham? It had the 'sheering marks', something most copies lack.

Hi I have to be completely honest with you, the quality is quite remarkable when in hand, If it is a copy then a good one IMHO. Would I add it to complete my Stars collection, probably yes, that being said, it only cost 12GBP, can't really grumble with that. I would obviously prefer a "Awarded" piece, but I've not seen any on the market yet, and what price is one likely to pay, as usual one with full provenance will fetch higher than a "Loner" with none. With regards to shear marks, this also has them and comparing with all the others stars I have appear to be identical

regards

Alex

Edited by Alex K

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Hi all,

I don't know if threadomancy is a term this forum is familiar with, but you're looking at it now!

Thank you for the various responses my query had, and for the PMs.

Attached is a picture of my taid's medals post-Arctic Star. The first line of medals are those he would have been entitled to wear on uniform today, the bottom row are those not approved for wear, along with the commemorative medal he valued so much in the absence of an Arctic Star. The convoys really defined his entire war and the PTSD he suffered afterwards. 

If there is interest I can share pictures of his miniature medals, which are court mounted for wear?

image.jpeg

On 2 March 2013 at 16:41, redeagleorder said:

Although they undoubtedly deserved it, I don't think it is very fair to other soldiers who served in specialist roles. Why no star for SAS, secret agents, resistance members and the like? They also went through great hardships. I do not disagree with the award as a whole, just think it is too little too late. A clasp to the 1939-45 star (like the Bomber Command personell Megan mentions) would have been better IMHO.

 

Matthew

 

On 2 March 2013 at 18:47, Alex K said:

With regards to the SAS, those deserving of specific military recognition most probably received them, the point with the SAS it was and still is a very covert operation, and subject to nil publicity, that's what makes them so unique, I'm sure that many serving and ex-members have a high degree of awards. a specific bar would not prove anything.

Bomber command, yes a deliberate and political act by the then ruling government and subsequent administrations, It became politically incorrect in subsequent years to associate the mass carpet bombings and loss of life over many major German cities, "Bomber Harris" was virtually forgotten or ostricised after the war because he was "Bad news", that's why the many bomber crews who fought and 50 000 who died were refused recognition, A memorial to them has since been erected in London, a medal bar is small but tangible recognition eventually

With regard to the 'SAS question' I would have thought that many of them would, alongside the 'normal awards' be able to wear wings (special wings others don't get) regimental ties that no one else has access to, and so on. 

I take the point about the 8th Army, but the difficulty, I think, is where to stop? Should SAS troops have a bar, what about the LRDG? What about the Chindits? PARAs in Market Garden, etc? It would be difficult to decide where to start and stop. We would end up with US-style unit citations...

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Last medal on lower row is the Arctic Campaign Medal produced by Award Medals with some profits going to the Arctic Convoy Club: http://www.awardmedals.com/arctic-campaign-medal-p-633.html?cPath=282_21_33 

unofficial medal of course but my grandad loved it and valued it more than his other medals (apart from maybe the Russian ones). It's a shame he died before  he could receive the Medal of Ushakov!

picture of miniature medals to follow...

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Wow.  Thanks for the explanation.  

He was to receive the  Medal of Ushakov ?!?!?!  That is a very high medal!  How did this happen?  Is this something that goes to all survivors now?

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