Distinguished Conduct Medal

Distinguished Conduct Medal

Distinguished Conduct Medal

The Distinguished Conduct Medal was a high honor for British soldiers in the British Army who have distinguished themselves. Their courage in fighting

The medal was instituted by Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom against Russia during the Crimean War on December 4, 1854. On that day announced that Victoria was established “to medal” and a sergeant, four corporals and ten men from every regiment deployed in the Crimea, and from the Foot Guards Rifle Regiment of the 15, 10 and 5 pounds would receive respectively. THERE was also a “a medal for distinguished service and gallant conduct in the field”.

The British army knew until that time except a medal for good behavior in peacetime (the Meritorious Service Medal) and a medal for meritorious service, the Long Service and Good Conduct Medal “, no medal for the NCO and soldiers and. Owning one of the two existing ditch medals awarding the medal from other.

The British government has had some difficulty entering a medal for bravery. In February 1855 were 1000 medals with a trophy on the front and on the back the words “FOR DISTINGUISHED CONDUCT IN THE FIELD” ordered by the Royal Mint in London. The medals were sent to the battlefield in Crimea in March.


The Distinguished Conduct Medal has always remained a rare and high distinction. Although the British Empire was in the half century after the founding almost constantly engaged in large and small armed conflicts an exception. Continued awarding this medal. In the literature, the coin called a “second level” award for bravery. First are Victoria Cross and George Cross, the Distinguished Conduct Medal is awarded when it is not appropriate to grant this highest honors and “ordinary” courage gave the British government a series of awards including the Military Medal of the army, the Distinguished Service Medal of the Navy, the Distinguished Flying Medal and the Air Force Medal.

A Distinguished Conduct Medal was therefore despite the modest name a very high standing and prestige medal. It was the award that a non-commissioned officer or soldier might expect for a courageous act that just was not eligible for the Victoria Cross. Since 1854. An officer came in that case for a Distinguished Service Order eligible. During World War II, more than 1900 of these medals were awarded. In previous years there were 770.

•During and after the Crimean War were 750 medals awarded. The British had 250,000 troops deployed.

•Were granted after the Indian mutiny 9 medals. If known

•In Ethiopia 7 medals were granted in 1868.

•In the Ashanti war were 33 medals awarded in 1874.

•In the Zulu war, 15 medals awarded in 1879.

•First Boer War of 1880 – 1881 were 21 medals awarded.

•In Crete in 1898, six medals awarded.

•During the Second Boer War (1898 – 1902) about 2050 medals were awarded.

•During the First World War (1914 – 1918) and in the aftermath of the war in Russia were granted 24591. 472 soldiers received the medal a second time and nine soldiers were given a third medal.

•During the interwar period were 45 medals awarded for bravery in Mesopotamia (5), in Somaliland (1), on the borders with Afghanistan (7), on the Malabar coast (1), in Waziristan (2) and in Palestine (14 times). Twelve soldiers from the First World War were still distinct in 1920.

•In the Second World War medals awarded in 1879. Nine soldiers received the medal a second time and were allowed to wear a buckle on the ribbon. The British Army had three half million soldiers deployed. George VI granted twelve more medals for bravery during World War II in 1947.

•After the Second World War, the medal in the period to 1969 are given 118 times, in Aden, Yemen, Borneo (4 times), Kenya. the Korean War (21 times), Malaya (47 times), the Suez war and South Vietnam, where 30 of the Australian military on the side of the Americans fought against communist aggression were decorated.

•After the recapture of the Falkland Islands and South Georgia was one Distinguished Conduct Medal awarded.

•The Gulf War in 1991 led to the last two medals to Richard John Peake, an Acting Petty Officer (Diver) Royal Navy (Fleet Diving Unit A) and Andrew Seabrook, Acting Petty Officer (Diver) British Gulf War Persian Gulf were granted . Both decorations were announced on June 29, 1991.

By administrative sloppiness in particular the oldest records in which the grants of the Distinguished Conduct Medal were kept, incomplete and unreliable.

Four soldiers, a Gurkha a Canadian and two Australians received after World War II a second Distinguished Conduct Medal and could attach a buckle on their ribbon.

The medal was awarded to British soldiers. For a time were the soldiers from the British Commonwealth awarded medals but the unit was lost over the years, several own decorations set in the dominions. Even soldiers allies came for the Distinguished Conduct Medal eligible.

The Distinguished Conduct Medal was very prestige. Within the British armed forces was only rarely awarded Victoria Cross higher, the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal was equal in rank and the Distinguished Service Medal, the Military Medal, reserved for the Air Force Distinguished Flying Medal and the Air Force Medal were lower in regard.

The medal was similar to that granted to particular acts of courage to senior officers Distinguished Service Order (DSO) but in the strict hierarchy and wear order of the British honors came the Distinguished Conduct Medal in a low place. That was due to the low regard that non-commissioned officers and men enjoyed in the British class society. It was unthinkable that someone both for officers as an award intended for men possessed so the Distinguished Conduct Medal was given a prominent place on the chest of a non-commissioned officer or soldier. When was awarded the medal for a second intervention was a brave buckle worn on the ribbon. The baton was then a small silver rose.

The Distinguished Conduct Medal had been reserved primarily for the army, but in 1942 it was decided that the Royal Air Force and Royal Navy were eligible for this medal. The British Royal Navy received 72 medals, and a first and a first and second buckle. All these medals were awarded for bravery land. The British Royal Air Force received the First World War Royal Flying Corps 80 medals and a buckle and as Royal Air Force four medals.

In World War II the British Royal Air Force received six medals. The Royal Canadian Air Force received a medal and two medals were for the Royal Australian Air Force.

The medal was abolished in 1993 as part of a simplification of the British honors system. It was considered making strict distinction between brave officers and non-commissioned officers and men on the other hand the time.

The location of the Distinguished Conduct Medal in the honors system

The honors system of the British forces until 1993 was very opaque. The rank of the brave military played a big role and there were several awards for Army, Navy and Air Force. Sometimes the areas overlapped what the confusion (and arbitrary) increased. The medal was abolished in 1993 as part of a simplification of the British honors system. It was considered making strict distinction between brave officers and non-commissioned officers and men on the other hand the time.

For valor in the armed forces and the Merchant Navy knew the British until 1993 the following awards:

•The Victoria Cross

•The George Cross

•The George Medal

•The Distinguished Service Order (sometimes granted for bravery)

•The Distinguished Service Cross, the former Conspicuous Service Cross of the Navy

•The Distinguished Flying Cross

•The Air Force Cross

•The Military Cross

•The Distinguished Conduct Medal

•The Distinguished Service Medal (abolished in 1993) and the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal (abolished in 1993)

•The Military Medal (abolished in 1993)

•The Distinguished Flying Medal (abolished in 1993)

•The Air Force Medal (abolished in 1993)

•The British Empire Medal for bravery, (“British Empire Medal for Gallantry”), in this form abolished in 1974

The Distinguished Conduct Medal was abolished in 1993 as part of a simplification of the British honors system. It was considered making strict distinction between on the one hand brave officers and NCOs and men from other time. The decorated soldiers and veterans were the coin remain wear.

In 1993 it was decided that the Distinguished Conduct Medal would no longer be granted. In the same reform was laid down that the Distinguished Service Order would not be issued. Courage The Conspicuous Gallantry Medal) was abolished. The three awards were replaced by the new Conspicuous Gallantry Cross in all three parts of the armed forces is awarded for acts of courage that do not qualify for the exclusive Victoria Cross or George Cross but impressive for the Military Cross, the for the Air Force reserved Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Force Cross.

The medal

•The first medals stood on the front a trophy displayed. In 1902 Edward VII had this motif replaced by his portrait. Since then, the head of George V, George VI and Elizabeth II stood on the Distinguished Conduct Medal.

•The downside has remained unchanged since 1852. However, the command ‘FOR DISTINGUISHED CONDUCT IN THE FIELD.

•The attachment between medal and ribbon of silver.

•The 32 millimeter wide silk ribbon is purple – dark purple-red in three equal vertical stripes.

•The first rectangular silver buckles (bars) were of a date of grant provided. In 1916 was chosen for the standard model with a lauwermotief.

The batons of the Distinguished Conduct Medal


DCM and Bar

DCM and two Bars

It is common to medals and on the edge with an inscription with the name and rank of the decorandus and the date of the grant. These before the ceremony

Soldiers have in the daily uniform that they possess one or more buckles to sew. By a small silver tudor rose on the baton The carriers can carry on a knife-jacket or suit a miniature of the coin, with miniature buckles on the ribbon, or on a chain on the lapel.


•Mackay, J and Mussel, J (eds) – Medals Yearbook – 2005, (2004), Token Publishing.


A provision in the London Gazette (January 10, 1920, page 430)

Read more

•Abbott, PE and Tamplin, JMA – British Gallantry Awards, (1981), Nimrod Dix and Co..

•Recipients of the Distinguished Conduct Medal 1914-1920 by Robert Walker ISBN (090745500X).

•Recipients of the Distinguished Conduct Medal, 1855-1909, A List withother Details of all who received the Medal before the Outbreak of World War 1 by Peter E. Abbott ISBN (0903754096)

Award in the UK

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