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World War One Army Medals
These are my Father's medals.
In the First World War all NZ soldiers were under the Command of the British Army, so these are British medals. And there were very few medals available.

On the left
The British War Medal 1914-20 Awarded for service as follows:
• Navy - for 28 days mobilised service or to those who lost their lives in active operations before completing that period, between 5 August 1914 and 11 November 1918.
• Army and Air Force - entry into a theatre of war on duty, or who left places of residence and rendered approved overseas service between 5 August 1914 and 11 November 1918.
• Mercantile Marine - at least six months service between 5 August 1914 and 11 November 1918.

On the right
The Victory Medal Awarded for service as follows:
• Navy - those who were mobilised and rendered approved service either at sea between 5 August 1914 and 11 November 1918 or on the establishment of a unit within a theatre of military operations.
• Army - those who served on the establishment of a unit in a theatre of war.
• Air Force - those who served on the establishment of a unit in a theatre of war outside the UK, served with an operational unit in the UK or overseas and had been actively engaged against the enemy, been employed in flying new aircraft to France or served on the complement of aircraft-carrying ships.

A member Mentioned in Dispatches for service during World War 1 wears a bronze oak leaf on the ribbon. Only one emblem is worn no matter how many times a member may have been 'mentioned'.


New Zealand declared war on 5th Aug 1914. Bill was aged 18.

Farming lads like him were in demand as they had experience with horses, which were widely used on the war fields.

Lots of young chaps volunteered for service thinking more of the opportunity and excitement of going overseas rather than the perils they might face.

He told the story about him working in a paddock of hay when a bunch of his neighbouring chaps passed by and called out jocularly, "Come on Billy, we’re going in to town to enlist". So he threw the hay fork in the air and ran across to join the merry bunch.

I asked him why he volunteered and he said that they knew that sooner or later they would be called up anyway and so it was better to volunteer. However they were quite unaware of what was ahead of them.