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
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
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
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
Accession Number: KO0987/04
Details on this page are with thanks
to special advisor Mr Fergus Read.