Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military)

The Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) is a medal awarded to regular members of the armed forces. It was instituted by King George V in 1930 and replaced the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal as well as the Permanent Forces of the Empire Beyond the Seas Medal. The medal was originally awarded to Regular Army warrant officers, non-commissioned officers and men of the UK Armed Forces. It also had a number of territorial versions for the Permanent Forces of the British Dominions. The eligibility criteria were relaxed in 1947 to also allow the award of the medal to officers who had served a minimum period in the ranks before being commissioned.[1][2][3] Since 2016, the eligibility was widened to include officers who had never served in the ranks, and so the medal can now be awarded to all regular members of the British Armed Forces who meet the required length of service.

Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military)
King George V version
TypeMilitary long service medal
Awarded for18 years service until 1977
15 years service from 1977
Country United Kingdom
Presented bythe Monarch of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions, and Emperor of India
EligibilityUK Armed Forces other ranks
Conditionally to officers from 1947
Female soldiers from 1955
British officers from 2016
ClaspsInstituted in 1944 for 15 years additional service
10 years service from 2016
StatusCurrently awarded
Established1930
First awarded1930
Ribbon Bar
Order of wear
Next (higher) Accumulated Campaign Service Medal
Equivalent Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (South Africa)
Next (lower) Naval Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (1830)
RelatedArmy Long Service and Good Conduct Medal

Overview edit

In the complex British honours system, there were distinct awards for officers and men of the Navy, Army and Air Force, and separate awards for the Regular Force or Reserve components. Regular Force officers were not eligible for any long service awards since, as they held a commission, they were expected to serve honourably and for a long period of time. Reserve Force officers were eligible for various long service decorations that granted them the use of post-nominal letters, while Reserve Force other ranks were eligible for various long service and good conduct medals, but without post-nominals.[4]

Predecessors edit

The United Kingdom's Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal was instituted by King William IV in 1830.[1]

In 1895 Queen Victoria authorised Colonial governments to adopt, amongst others, this medal and to award it to other ranks of their own permanent military forces. Territories that took advantage of the authorisation include Canada, Cape of Good Hope, India, Natal, New South Wales, New Zealand, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria and, from 1902, the Commonwealth of Australia. Each territorial version of the medal had the name of the respective territory inscribed in a curved line above the inscription on the reverse.[3][5][6][7][8][9]

In 1910 the Permanent Forces of the Empire Beyond the Seas Medal was instituted as a single common award to supersede these territorial versions of the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal.[3]

Institution edit

On 23 September 1930 the Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) was instituted by King George V as a single medal for the regular other ranks of the British Army and those of all Permanent Forces of the British Empire. The new medal, which replaced the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal as well as the Permanent Forces of the Empire Beyond the Seas Medal, once again had various territorial versions, this time in the form of subsidiary titles inscribed on a bar attached to the suspender of the medal rather than on the medal's reverse.[1][2][3]

 
The Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct with the Canada clasp

These subsidiary titles are "Regular Army" on the bar of the medal for the British Army and the name of the dominion country on the bars of the medals for Australia, Canada, India and New Zealand. Apart from the bars, all but one of the medals are identical. The Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (South Africa), introduced in December 1939, is the exception since the inscriptions on its bar as well as on the reverse of the medal are bilingual, in Afrikaans and English on the bar and in English and Afrikaans on the medal reverse. Instead of the name of the country, the South African medal displays the all-capital inscriptions "Staande Mag" and "Permanent Force" in two lines on the suspender bar.[3][5][10][11][12][13]

Award criteria edit

When it was instituted, the medal could be awarded to Regular Force warrant officers, non-commissioned officers and men of the British Army after eighteen years of unblemished service. Qualifying service included service rendered by a soldier whilst under the age of eighteen, while service in West Africa and in certain parts of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan was reckoned two-fold as qualifying service.[3]

The medal and the clasp could initially only be awarded to men, but on 9 February 1955 the criteria were amended by Queen Elizabeth II to also apply to women members of the Armed Forces of the United Kingdom and of the Permanent Forces of member countries of the Commonwealth.[14]

The qualifying period was reduced to fifteen years with effect from 1 December 1977.[15] Possibly at the same time, the criteria in respect of reckonable service whilst under the age of eighteen was amended to be from date of attestation or age 17½, whichever is later.[1][5][16]

Eligibility

The Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) may be awarded to members of the UK Armed Forces who have completed eighteen (later fifteen) years of reckonable service. However, there were a number of offences which would normally preclude award of the medal and awards are only made after a thorough check of a soldier's service record. The award of the medal required the recommendation of the individual's commanding officer and it could therefore only be awarded to serving personnel. Eligibility criteria were amended in 2016[3][16]

Clasp

On 26 August 1944 a clasp to the medal was instituted by King George VI. The clasp could be awarded to holders of the Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) for additional periods of eighteen (later fifteen) years of good service, reckoned from the date of the Army Order that announced their respective earlier awards. Holders of the earlier Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal were not awarded the clasp, but were instead awarded the Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) in addition to the discontinued earlier medal.[1][4][17]

The reckoning method was amended by King George VI on 1 May 1947 to be from the qualifying date for the award of the Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (Military) or the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal.[18]

In October 2016, regulations were changed allowing the award of the clasp after an additional 10 years of service that meets conduct criteria.[19]

Officers

Regular Force officers were traditionally not eligible for any long service awards. From 1 May 1947 British Army officers also became eligible for the award of the medal, but only if at least twelve of their eighteen (later fifteen) years of qualifying service had been in the ranks before being commissioned and provided that the conduct requirements for the award of the medal had been met.[1][4][16][18]

Also from that date, an officer became eligible for the award of the clasp or, for holders of the discontinued Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, the award of the Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) in addition to the earlier medal, if at least nine of the eighteen years of the second qualifying period of service had been in the ranks and provided that the conduct requirements had been met.[18]

Effective October 2016, officers who were serving in the Regular Army on or after 29 July 2014 are eligible for award of the Long Service and Good Conduct Medal. To be eligible for the medal officers must have had 15 years Regular Army service with a clear disciplinary record. Subsequent service of 10 years is recognized with a clasp, so long as the individual has continued to have a clear disciplinary record.[19]

Order of wear edit

In the order of wear prescribed by the British Central Chancery of the Orders of Knighthood, the Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) and its territorial versions rank on par with the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal and the Permanent Forces of the Empire Beyond the Seas Medal that it had replaced. It takes precedence after the Accumulated Campaign Service Medal and before the Naval Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (1830).[20]

Description edit

The medal was struck in silver and is a disk, 36 millimetres (1.42 inches) in diameter.[1][3]

Obverse

The obverse of the medal shows the effigy of the reigning monarch. Two versions of the medal each were produced during the reigns of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth II. All versions of the medal have the same ornamented scroll pattern suspender, attached to the bottom of a bar inscribed "REGULAR ARMY" and affixed to the medal with a single-toe claw and a horizontal pin through the upper edge of the medal.[3]

Reverse

The reverse of the medal remained unchanged through all versions of the obverse. It is smooth, with a raised rim, and bears the inscription "FOR LONG SERVICE AND GOOD CONDUCT" in four lines. The reverse of the bar is smooth and undecorated on all versions.[3][16]

Clasp

The Clasp displays the image of the Army Crest. In undress uniform a silver rosette on the ribbon bar denotes the award of the clasp.[16]

Ribbon

The ribbon is identical to the one that was introduced for the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal in June 1916. It is 32 millimetres wide and crimson or sometimes reddish violet, edged with 3 millimetres wide white bands.[3][16]

Versions edit

King George V

The first version of the medal, depicted at the head of the article, has a raised rim and the obverse shows the crowned effigy of King George V, in Coronation robes and facing left. It is inscribed "GEORGIVS•V•D•G•BRITT•OMN•REX•ET•INDIÆ•IMP•" around the perimeter.[21][22]

King George VI
 
King George VI version 1

The first King George VI version appeared after he succeeded to the throne on 11 December 1936. The medal also has a raised rim and shows the crowned effigy of the King, facing left. The medal is inscribed "GEORGIVS VI D: G: BR: OMN: REX ET INDIÆ: IMP:" (George VI, by the Grace of God King of Great Britain and Emperor of India) around the perimeter, reading from the eight o'clock position.[21][23][24]

 
King George VI version 2

A second King George VI version appeared in 1949 following the granting of independence to India, when the King's official title changed from "Monarch of the United Kingdom and the Dominions of the British Commonwealth, and Emperor of India" to "Monarch of the United Kingdom and the Dominions of the British Commonwealth, and Monarch of India". This version is inscribed "GEORGIVS VI DEI: GRA: BRITT: OMN: REX FID: DEF:" around the perimeter, reading from a cross at the eight o'clock position.[21][25]

Queen Elizabeth II
 
Queen Elizabeth II version 1
 
Queen Elizabeth II version 2

The first Queen Elizabeth II version appeared after she succeeded to the throne on 6 February 1952. The medal shows a crowned effigy of the Queen, facing right, and is inscribed "ELIZABETH II D: G: BR: OMN: REGINA F: D:", reading around from the top. The effigy was designed by sculptor Cecil Thomas OBE and was used on a number of medals.[21][26][27]

After her Coronation on 2 June 1953, a second Queen Elizabeth II version was introduced in 1954, with the same effigy as before but inscribed "ELIZABETH II DEI GRATIA REGINA. F. D.", also reading around from the top. This version remained in use until 1980.[21][28]

Notable recipients edit

2016 revision edit

In October 2016, it was announced that the Long Service and Good Conduct Medals of the respective services would be extended to all personnel irrespective of rank, who meet the requirements of award. The key requirement is any period of 15 years' service in the Regular Army starting from the day of attestation irrespective of age without any entries on the individual's disciplinary record. This change is retroactive to those officers still serving in the Regular Army from 29 July 2014. Additionally, the period required for the award of the clasp has been reduced from 15 to 10 years with a back date to 29 July 2014 for officers and to 1 October 2016 for other ranks.[19][32]

References edit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Stephen Stratford Medals site - British Military & Criminal History - 1900 to 1999 - Army Long Service & Good Conduct Medal Archived 24 September 2015 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 26 May 2015)
  2. ^ a b The Real Royal Engineers - The Army Long Service Good Conduct Medal (Accessed 2 June 2015)
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "No. 33653". The London Gazette. 17 October 1930. p. 6313.
  4. ^ a b c National Defence and the Canadian Forces - Obsolete Long Service Awards Archived 17 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 10 June 2015)
  5. ^ a b c McCreery, Christopher (2011). The Canadian Forces' Decoration (PDF). Ottawa: Directorate of Honours and Recognition National Defence Headquarters. pp. 6–9. (Accessed 26 May 2015)
  6. ^ South African Medal Website – Colonial Military Forces - Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (1896-1913) (Accessed 6 May 2015)
  7. ^ Museum Victoria - Medal - Queensland Long Service & Good Conduct Medal, Specimen, Queen Victoria, Queensland, Australia, 1895-1901 Archived 30 May 2015 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 29 May 2015)
  8. ^ Museum Victoria - Medal - South Australia Long Service & Good Conduct Medal, Specimen, Queen Victoria, South Australia, Australia, 1895-1901 Archived 30 May 2015 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 29 May 2015)
  9. ^ Museum Victoria - Medal - Commonwealth of Australia Long Service & Good Conduct Medal, King Edward VII, Australia, 1903-1910 Archived 30 May 2015 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 29 May 2015)
  10. ^ South African Medal Website - Union Defence Forces (1939-52) - Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) (1939-52) (Accessed 3 May 2015)
  11. ^ Peter Duckers. British Military Medals, A Guide for the Collector and Family Historian, Paragraph heading: The South African Permanent Forces Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, 1939-52. 2nd ed, 2013. Pen & Sword Books Ltd., Barnsley, South Yorkshire. PDF ISBN 978-1-47383-099-8 (Accessed 19 June 2015)
  12. ^ Medals of War - Army LSGC medal (Geo V) bar Canada Cpl (A/Sgt) R. Morrison, PPCLI; Awarded 15-1-36 (Accessed 17 June 2015)
  13. ^ Dixons Medals - Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal George V, Commonwealth issue, 3rd type 1930-1936 with India bar. Assistant Surgeon S.N. Eate, Indian Medical Department (Accessed 17 June 2015)
  14. ^ The Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) - Rules amendment, 9 February 1955
  15. ^ "LS and GCM (Army)". Ministry of Defence. Archived from the original on 6 March 2013. Prior to 1 December 1977, 18 years service was required for consideration for the LS and GCM.
  16. ^ a b c d e f Gov.UK - Defence and Armed Forces - guidance - Medals: campaigns, descriptions and eligibility - LS and GCM (Army) Long Service and Good Conduct Medal for the Army (Accessed 16 June 2015)
  17. ^ The Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) - Fifth Clause amendment, 26 August 1944
  18. ^ a b c The Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military) - Fifth Clause amendment, 1 May 1947
  19. ^ a b c "Long Service and Good Conduct rules updated". Ministry of Defence. 6 October 2016. Archived from the original on 9 October 2016. Retrieved 9 October 2016.
  20. ^ "No. 56878". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 March 2003. p. 3352.
  21. ^ a b c d e The Military Archive - Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Archived 28 June 2015 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 19 June 2015)
  22. ^ Neate Medals - Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Bar Regular Army, GVR Issue Archived 20 June 2015 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 19 June 2015)
  23. ^ Medal-Medaille - Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal with ‘India’ bar, George VI 1937-1948 issue, miniature (Accessed 18 June 2015)
  24. ^ Dixons Medals - Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal George VI, Commonwealth issue, 1st type 'Indiae Imp.' 1937-1948 with India bar. Staff Sergeant S.A.B. Percy, Indian Army Ordnance Corps (Accessed 18 June 2015)
  25. ^ Dixons Medals - Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal George VI issue, 2nd type 'Fid.Def.' 1949-1953 with regular army bar, erasure before number. 7261821 Warrant Officer Class 1 B.F. Overy, Royal Army Medical Corps (Accessed 19 June 2015)
  26. ^ "No. 39873". The London Gazette (Supplement). 29 May 1953. p. 3023.
  27. ^ "The Queen's/King's Medal for Champion Shots - Naval Awards". Retrieved 7 August 2015.
  28. ^ Dixons Medals - Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Elizabeth II issue, 2nd type 'Dei Gratia' post 1954 with regular army bar. 24262961 Bombardier M.J. Myatt, Royal Artillery (Accessed 19 June 2015)
  29. ^ The London Gazette: no. 49134, 8 October 1982. p. 12849. (Accessed 18 June 2015)
  30. ^ Historic Royal Palaces - Tower of London - Warder with a Secret Weapon Archived 15 February 2010 at the Wayback Machine (Accessed 18 June 2015)
  31. ^ The London Gazette: no. 44938, 19 September 1969. p. 9703. (Accessed 18 June 2015)
  32. ^ "JSP 761 Honours and Awards in the Armed Forces Part 1: Directive" (PDF). Ministry of Defence. pp. 5−1–5B−4. Retrieved 10 October 2016.

Bibliography edit