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1914 Star (5th August - 22nd November 1914)

A four pointed star, the top point replaced by a crown.  Across the face of the star are two crossed swords, the points and handles of which form what might appear to be four additional points.  Partly covering the swords are a wreath and, within it, three scrolls.  The centre scroll bears the date ‘1914’, the upper and lower scrolls bear respectively ‘AUG.’ and ‘NOV.’.  Over the base of the wreath is the cipher ‘GV’.

Flat and plain, except for the number, rank, name and regiment of the recipient impressed upon it.

Approx. 44 mm wide and 62 mm long including the ring suspension.

Medal and bar of bronze.  Emblem of silver.

Approx. 32mm wide.  From left to right as seen on the wearer the colours are red, white and blue shaded and watered.

The ribbon passes through a ring, approx. 13mm in diameter which is integral with the piece - the whole being stamped out solid.

The number, rank, name and regiment of the recipient are stamped on the reverse in block capitals in three lines.  The style of lettering varies somewhat from medal to medal.

One bar bearing the dates “5th Aug.: 22nd Nov. 1914”; one emblem, a rosette, to be worn in place of the bar on the ribbon on the tunic when medals are not worn.  Bar had to be claimed.

The medal was authorised in 1917 for award to all who served on the strength of a unit or service in France or Belgium between 5th August and 22nd November 1914.  This was principally an army award, although a few Royal Navy personnel qualified, having served ashore at Antwerp during the qualifying period.  A few women also received the award having served in France and Belgium as nurses or auxiliaries during the qualifying period.  The award of the bar and emblem was authorised in October 1919 to all who had been under fire in France or Belgium between the above dates.  The award of the medal was automatic, but in order to gain the bar and emblem a claim had to be submitted and substantiated.  Since this could only be done well after the war ended, some who had the necessary qualifying service made no claim and received no bar or emblem.  This applies particularly to those who qualified but died later in the war, as many next-of-kin made no claim.  Around 378,000 Stars were issued.

The King’s Own
The 1st Battalion of the Regiment disembarked at Boulogne, France on 23 August 1914 with a strength of 1000 all ranks.  This was the only Battalion of the Regiment whose personnel qualified for the 1914 Star.  The Battalion first went into action on 26th August and on that day suffered 443 all ranks killed, wounded and missing.  By 22 November the Battalion had suffered a further 327 casualties and had received drafts totalling 576 new arrivals from England.  Nearly 2000 of the 1914 Stars were issued to officers and men of the Regiment. Almost all  these would have been entitled to the bar and emblem.

1914 Stars to men of the King’s Own can be recognised by the naming of the reverse: e.g.: “6278 PTE. J. OLDFIELD. R.LANC.R.”.

1914 Stars in the museum's collection

1914 Star
Accession Number: KO0987/04

Medals noted in records with the reference as King's Regulations for the Army (1912) Paragraph 1743 - are those medals which at the end of ten years still remain unclaimed and sent to the Deputy Director of Ordnance Stores, Royal Dockyard (Medal Branch) Woolwich to be broken up.


Details on this page are with thanks to special advisor Mr Fergus Read.

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