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"Medals help!" Topic

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By John 5403 Aug 2017 9:34 p.m. PST

Hello peeps,
A little help needed, if you could be so kind. I don't want to go into the why's, but a friend of mine needs help with wearing his medals in the right order. He has, Northern Ireland medal, UN Bosnia medal, Gulf War one, plus, a civilian MBE. Looking at him, from the front, which order, left to right, should they be in?
Many thanks for any help you can give.


nickinsomerset03 Aug 2017 11:18 p.m. PST

MBE then the others in order that they were presented.

Tally Ho!

foxweasel04 Aug 2017 2:15 a.m. PST

Nick is correct.

Oberlindes Sol LIC04 Aug 2017 10:41 a.m. PST

Once they're affixed in proper order, your friend has to make sure that he keeps control of his jacket, so that no one rearranges the medals so that the colors match better!

foxweasel04 Aug 2017 4:38 p.m. PST

Further to my last, it would be a good idea for your friend to spend a few quid and get them court mounted properly. It looks a lot smarter and saves fiddling about with separate medals.

Lion in the Stars04 Aug 2017 10:15 p.m. PST

I second the permanent mounting (which in the US can also be done for the ribbons, for less formal situations).

Totally worth it!

By John 5405 Aug 2017 9:28 p.m. PST

Thats great, thanks to you all, I had told him the order, but the contrary ee-jit wouldn't believe me!


Supercilius Maximus Supporting Member of TMP06 Aug 2017 5:27 a.m. PST

MBE then the others in order that they were presented.

Nick – Not questioning this, as I know you've served, but I was always taught that military decorations took precedence over civilian, gallantry medals over campaign, and VC/GC (in that order, as VC is older), over all other gallantry awards. Is that not correct?

mollinary07 Aug 2017 2:36 a.m. PST

There is one additional complication (surprise, surprise!). 'Foreign' awards and decorations, where permission has been given for them to be worn, rank behind all national decorations. For reasons best known to itself, the U.K. Government classifies NATO and UN medals, as foreign decorations.
Having looked through the guidance issued by UK Government, the order would appear to be MBE, then GSM (N Ireland) and Gulf War Medal in the order they were presented, then UN Bosnia Medal. If you get them court mounted, any reputable firm dealing in this sort of thing should know the correct order. Hope this helps,


foxweasel07 Aug 2017 4:58 a.m. PST

I think you've been given duff gen mate. My operational medals, which have been re-mounted numerous times by different companies, are all in the order awarded. GSM, GW1, UN BOS, NATO FRY, Afghanistan, GW2.

From JSP761

f. United Kingdom Operational Service Medals, United Nations Medals and Medals of other recognised International Organisations. Worn in order of date of award.

mollinary07 Aug 2017 5:35 a.m. PST


Many, many, thanks for that. I have gone back to the sources, and you are absolutely correct. As someone who only has awards from International Organisations it has never arisen in my case, but I have certainly been told this was the case in the past. Just shows, you need to check, check, and check again!


nickinsomerset11 Aug 2017 2:34 a.m. PST

Yup, duf info old chap, otherwise I would have been handed many extra duties over the past years!

The MBE and BEM were/are always mounted before Campaign medals.

Tally Ho!

By John 5412 Aug 2017 7:40 p.m. PST

Great stuff, very interesting. Thanks on behalf……


Lion in the Stars15 Aug 2017 8:50 p.m. PST

This is why I almost prefer the US system, which has a nice long display of the Order of Precedence for all medals and ribbons.

I should really get off my butt and get my medals mounted, but when you only have 1 and 2/3rds rows, it's barely worth it.

By John 5416 Aug 2017 11:40 a.m. PST

But Lion, the yanks get a medal for each day you turned up? surely? teeheehee….. My American Air Force Nephew got a medal for servng in England, as it was a 'frontline Nato war country' the most dangerous act he performed was the seduction of my fearsome Niece!


GreenLeader16 Aug 2017 3:08 p.m. PST

Without meaning to be pedantic and as some else alluded, there is actually no such thing as 'the Northern Ireland medal', though every man and his dog calls it that. It is the General Service Medal.

Lion in the Stars16 Aug 2017 7:18 p.m. PST

The USAF *is* pretty bad about giving medals for anything. Including passing boot camp.

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