Medals, Awards and Badges describes most of the campaign medals and gallantry awards that were issued to service personnel during the Great War. The number of known Radcliffe on Trent recipients is given for each award. The figures are provisional due to the incomplete nature of some of our information. Details of the medals awarded to individual Radcliffe on Trent servicemen can be found in their biographies.
Information about medals awarded is derived from medal rolls index cards created by the Army Medal Office towards the end of WWI. There are over five million cards in existence. The medal records were not damaged by enemy bombing in WWII and provide a comprehensive picture of those who served overseas; they are an excellent starting point for researching individuals who saw active service in the Great War. Medal cards can be searched online at www.ancestry.co.uk at www.nationalarchives.gov.uk. (Medal Rolls Index Cards – service is free). Here you will find information on medals, awards and badges awarded to Radcliffe on Trent servicemen. Click on any of the headings below or continue to read the full document.
Campaign Medals: 1914 Star, 1914–1915 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
Gallantry Award: Distinguished Conduct Medal
Gallantry Awards: Military Cross, Military Medal
Gallantry Commendation: Mentioned in Despatches
Service Award: Meritorious Service Medal, American Red Cross Service Medal
Orders of Chivalry: Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George, Order of the British Empire, Grand Priory of the Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem in England
Civilian Medals: Médaille de la Reconnaissance Française, Médaille de la Reine Élisabeth
Badges: Silver War Badge
At the end of the war, all who served overseas were entitled to campaign medals. Service personnel were variously awarded the 1914 Star, the 1914–1915 Star, the British War and Allied Victory medals. The number and type of medals received depended on dates of service and involvement in theatres of war. Stars were only awarded together with the British War and Victory medals. The trio were known affectionately as Pip Squeak and Wilfred after cartoon characters of the time. The two Stars were both referred to as Pip (the dog), the British War was Squeak (the penguin) and the Victory medal was Wilfred (the rabbit).
The 1914 Star was the rarest campaign medal and was awarded to around 378, 000 military personnel in total. The vast majority of recipients were in the regular army before the war or special reservists. The Star was authorised by King George V in April 1917 for those who had served in France or Belgium from 5th August 1914 to midnight on 22nd November 1914. The first sixteen weeks of the war saw intense combat in August swiftly followed by the retreat from Mons, the battles of the Marne, Aisne, Armentières, Yser and the first battle of Ypres.
The award of the bronze medal was open to officers and men of the British and Indian Expeditionary Forces and doctors, nurses, and sailors from the Royal Navy, Royal Marines, Royal Navy Reserve and Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve who served ashore with the Royal Naval Division in France or Belgium. Just under half of the recipients also received a clasp which showed that they had served under enemy fire. The Clasp was a narrow horizontal bronze bar sewn onto the red, white and blue ribbon inscribed with the dates ‘5th AUG.–22nd NOV.1914′. A small silver heraldic rose could be attached to the ribbon when just the ribbon was being worn. The reverse of the bronze medal is impressed with the recipient’s service number, rank, name and unit. The 1914 Star was always awarded with the British War and Victory medals.
Radcliffe servicemen and the 1914 Star
Thirty-four Radcliffe on Trent men who were entitled to the 1914 Star have been identified from Medal Roll Index Cards. Twenty seven of them have been confirmed as regular army servicemen and two confirmed in the navy. One volunteered in August 1914. It is likely that the remaining four were either already in the army by August 1914 or reservists but records confirming their military status in 1914 have not yet been found. Nine of these thirty-four men were killed in action and three died of illnesses either during or immediately after the war. Ten are known to have been wounded, including one who was later killed. Three were prisoners of war, including one of the wounded men. One was hospitalised with a heart condition. Only eight of the men who were fighting from 1914 onwards, including the two in the navy, survived relatively unscathed as far as we know. Those men awarded the 1914 Star are as follows:
Regular army and reservists
Bemrose, Bertie (killed in action, 29.5.1918)
Bemrose, Ernest (killed in action, 20.10.1914)
Bemrose, Percy (killed in action, 12.3.1915)
Bemrose, William (wounded, transferred to the reserves November 1917)
Berridge, Gordon (died of TB, 14.12.1915)
Blew-Jones, Douglas (heart condition while on active service)
Cherry, Charles (wounded, 11.3.15. 17.6.18 returned to front)
Draper, Percy (killed in action, 22.2.1915)
Flower, Thomas (wounded 22.5.15, wounded again Nov. 1917, discharged)
Haines, Sam (wounded 27.10.14, transferred to reserves UK)
Humphrey, Ernest (died of illness, 5.2.1920)
Madeley, Wilfred (wounded twice, September 1915 and September 1916)
Marshall, Henry (chaplain to the forces on the western front)
Mason, John Henry (wounded twice, 26.11.14 and June 2016)
Newham, George (wounded 30.12.15, wounded again and taken prisoner of war 21.3.18)
Thorpe, Harry (Prisoner of War for four years from 20.11.14)
Todd, Bertie (killed in action, 9.5.1915)
Tytherley, Charles (killed in action, 10.10.1916)
Voce, Henry (killed in action, 10.9.1914)
Walker, George H. (wounded, later killed in action, 3.8.1917)
Waters, Thomas (wounded 23.9.14, returned France 4.10.15)
Smith, George Lancelot Vernon (later killed in action, WWII)
Volunteer, enlisted August 1914
Military status in 1914 of the following men has not yet been confirmed by official records. All served in the army.
Beet, Horace (died of illness, 26.12.1918)
Draper,Walter (killed in action, 13.5.1915)
Pepper, John (Prisoner of War 30.11.17)
Stratton, Thomas (wounded 1.10.14)