British Military & Criminal History:
1900 to 1999.
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This page contains a copy of the Royal Warrant that introduced the George Medal, and details some of the changes made by subsequent warrants.
The Original Warrant Text
following text is the Royal Warrant that introduced the George Medal on
24 September 1940. It should be noted that when the George Medal was introduced,
it was not possible to award the medal posthumously.
THE SIXTH, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, Ireland and the British
Dominions beyond the Seas, King, Defender of the Faith, Emperor of India,
to all whom these Presents shall come,
We have taken into Our Royal consideration the many acts of great bravery
performed both by male and by female persons especially during the present
whereas We are desiring of honouring
those who perform such deeds:
We do by these Presents for Us, Our Heirs and Successors institute and create a new Medal.
is ordained that the Medal shall be designated and styled "The George
It is ordained that the Medal shall be circular in form and silver, that it shall bear on the obverse the Crowned Effigy of the Sovereign, and on the reverse a representation of St. George slaying the Dragon on the coast of England, the design circumscribed by the words "The George Medal".
It is ordained that the persons eligible for the medal shall be:
medal is intended primarily for civilians and award in Our military services
is to be confined to actions for which purely military honours are not
is ordained that awards shall be made only on a recommendation to Us,
for civilians by Our Prime Minister and the First Lord of the Treasury,
and for Officers and members of Our Naval, Military and Air Forces, as
described in the previous clause of this Our Warrant, only on a recommendation
by Our First Lord of the Admiralty, Our Secretary of State for War or
Our Secretary of State for Air, as the case may be.
is ordained that the Medal shall be awarded only for acts of great bravery.
is ordained that foreign persons shall be eligible for the award of the
Medal and that awards to such persons not included in the Third Clause
of this Our Warrant shall be made only on a recommendation to Us for civilians
by Our Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and for Officers and members
of foreign military Forces by Our First Lord of the Admiralty, Our Secretary
of State for War or Our Secretary of State for Air as the case may be.
is ordained that the Medal shall be worn by recipients on the left breast
suspended from a ribbon one-and-a-quarter inches in width, of red, with
five equidistant narrow vertical stripes of blue, and that it shall be
worn immediately after the King's Police and Fire Services Medal for gallantry.
Provided that when the Medal is worn by a woman, it may be worn on the
left shoulder, suspended from a ribbon of the same width and colour fashioned
into a bow.
is ordained that the award of the Medal shall entitle the recipient, on
all occasions when the use of such letters is customary to have placed
after his or her names the letters "GM."
is ordained that an action which is worthy of recognition by the award
of the Medal, but is performed by one upon whom the Medal has been conferred,
may be recorded by the award of a Bar to be attached to the ribbon by
which the Medal is suspended, that for each such additional award an additional
Bar shall be added, and that for each Bar awarded a silver rosette shall
be added to the ribbon when worn alone.
is ordained that the names of all those upon whom We may be pleased to
confer or present the Medal, or a Bar to the Medal, shall be published
in the London Gazette, and that a Register of such names shall be kept
in the Central Chancery of the Orders of Knighthood.
is ordained that reproductions of the Medal, known as a Miniature Medal,
which may be worn on certain occasions by those to whom the Medal is awarded
shall be half the size of the George Medal.
is ordained that it shall be competent for Us, Our Heirs and Successors
by an Order under Our Sign Manual and on a recommendation to that effect
by or through Our Prime Minister and First Lord of the Treasury, Our First
Lord of the Admiralty, Our Secretary State for War or Our Secretary of
State for Air, as the case may be, to cancel or annul the award to any
person of the George Medal and that thereupon the name of such a person
in the Register shall be erased: provided that it shall be competent for
Us, Our Heirs and Successors to restore the Medal so forfeited when such
recommendation has been withdrawn.
reserve to Ourself, Our Heirs and Successors, full power of annulling,
altering, abrogating, augmenting, interpreting or dispensing with these
rules and ordinances, or any part thereof, by a notification under Our
Given at Our Court of St. James's, the twenty-fourth of September, one thousand nine hundred and forty, in the fourth year of Our Reign.
Subsequent Warrant Modifications
On 17 October 1942, an amendment was issued to the George Medal Warrant. This concerned the 3rd, 4th and 12th clauses. These modifications permitted condominium awards and the direct submission of nominations by Dominion Governments.
On 9 April 1964 an amendment was issued to the George Medal Warrant. This concerned the 3rd, 4th, 7th and 12th clauses. This again modified the warrant concerning the contribution of Commonwealth countries in the recommendation of George Medal awards, and their role in the removal of previously awarded George Medals.
On 30 November 1977, an amendment was issued to the George Medal Warrant. The major modification was to allow the award of posthumous awards; the award of the George Medal to people who died performing the act of bravery for which they were nominated.