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British Empire Medal GVI Full Size

£117.50 (Inc. Vat)


British Empire Medal GVI Full Size

Instituted: December 1922.

Ribbon: Originally plain purple (Civil), with a thin scarlet central stripe (Military); from July 1937 rose-pink with pearl-grey edges (Civil) and a central pearl-grey stripe (Military).

Original Metal: Silver.

Size: 36mm.

Description: (Obverse) the seated figure of Britannia, her left hand resting on a shield and her right holding a trident, with a blazing sun upper right. The words FOR GOD AND THE EMPIRE inscribed round the upper part of the circumference. The words MERITORIOUS SERVICE in the exergue. Suspended from a straight bar ornamented with oak leaves. A silver bar decorated with oak leaves was introduced in March 1941 for further acts, and is denoted by a silver rosette on the ribbon worn on its own. An emblem of crossed silver oak leaves was introduced in December 1957 to denote a gallantry award, a smaller version being worn on the ribbon alone.

The military ribbon includes a central grey stripe.

Bar for 2nd and subsequent awards worn on the medal ribbon. The bar is represented by a silver rosette when the ribbon only is worn.

  • Silver crossed Oak Leaves (1957-1974)
Cannot be engraved

Additional information


Formally entitled the Medal of the Order of the British Empire for Meritorious Service, it is generally known simply as the British
Empire Medal. It is awarded for meritorious service by both civil and military personnel although for some years it was issued as a third grade bravery award, particularly for air raid deeds not considered to be of the level of the George Cross or George Medal. The medal may be worn even if the recipient is promoted to a higher grade of the Order. The gallantry awards, instituted in December 1957, ceased in 1974 on the introduction of the Queen’s Gallantry Medal. No British awards were made for the BEM
between 1995 and 2012 although Commonwealth awards were still being made, however, the medal was resurrected for Her Majesty the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Honours List with over 250 awards being announced. The Order of the British Empire Emblem instituted in December 2006 may also be worn by holders of the BEM.


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