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Medals Q+A

Replacing campaign medals

Medals for campaign service are supposed to be treasured possessions, reflecting service to one's country and awarded by The Sovereign on behalf of a grateful nation. While their market value is often only superficial (though some can be quite valuable, particularly awards for gallantry), the recipient is expected to treat them with care and be mindful of their security. In view of this, once medals are issued they become the sole responsibility of the original recipient, or his/her next of kin. They will not, therefore, be replaced by the MOD if they are lost.

The only exception to this rule is if the medals are stolen or accidentally destroyed beyond the control of the owner, for example in a house fire. In these cases the MOD may replace the medal if proof of the loss is provided in the form of a Police Report or a claim to an insurance company. A charge is made for medals that are replaced to cover the cost of manufacture and a nominal charge for administration. It should be noted that replacement medals will be stamped as such to avoid confusion with the originals should they ever be found. For those who have lost their medals in circumstances other than this, please do not apply to the MOD for replacements. In these cases it is recommended you approach a reputable licensed medal dealer, who can be found in either Yellow Pages or The Soldier magazine. In most cases you will be surprised at how reasonably priced campaign medals are. Some people have suggested that second hand medals from a commercial supplier are less original than replacements bought from the MOD. 

This is not necessarily so. It should be borne in mind that the MOD does not hold vast stocks of new, un-issued medals dating back 50 years. The Royal Mint is still manufacturing medals for Second World War campaign service and supplies the medal offices in batches. Replacement medals will probably be of very recent manufacture, rather than date back to the late 1940s, so medals purchased from a commercial medal dealer may be, in fact, no more or less "original" than those supplied by the MOD.
To request the replacement of medals lost by either theft or destroyed by fire, please write to: 

MOD Medal Office 
Innsworth House 
Imjin Barracks
GL3 1 HW


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