France and Germany Star
|The France and Germany Star|
|Awarded by the Monarch of the United Kingdom and the Dominions of the British Commonwealth, and Emperor of India|
|Type||Military campaign medal|
|Awarded for||Entry into operational service|
|Campaign||Northwest Europe 1944-1945|
|Order of wear|
|Next (higher)||Italy Star|
|Next (lower)||Defence Medal (United Kingdom)|
Ribbon bar without and with rosette
The France and Germany Star is a military campaign medal, instituted by the United Kingdom in May 1945 for award to subjects of the British Commonwealth who served in the Second World War, specifically for service in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands or Germany and adjacent sea areas between 6 June 1944 and 8 May 1945.
The Second World War Stars
Altogether eight campaign stars and nine clasps were initially instituted for campaign service during the Second World War. On 8 July 1943 the 1939–1945 Star and the Africa Star were the first two of these stars to be instituted. One more campaign star, the Arctic Star, and one more clasp, the Bomber Command Clasp, were belatedly added on 26 February 2013, more than sixty-seven years after the end of the war.
Only one of these campaign stars, the 1939–1945 Star, covered the full duration of the Second World War from its outbreak on 3 September 1939 to the victory over Japan on 2 September 1945.
No-one could be awarded more than five (now six) campaign stars and no-one could be awarded more than one clasp to any one campaign star. Five of the nine (now ten) clasps were the equivalents of their namesake campaign stars and were awarded for the same respective campaigns as those stars, to be worn on the ribbon of that campaign star of the applicable group that had been earned first. The maximum of six possible campaign stars are the following:
- The 1939–1945 Star with, if awarded, either the Battle of Britain Clasp or the Bomber Command Clasp.
- Only one of the Atlantic Star, Air Crew Europe Star or France and Germany Star and, if awarded, the first to be earned respectively of the Air Crew Europe Clasp, France and Germany Clasp or Atlantic Clasp, to be worn on the ribbon of that one of these three campaign stars to have been first earned and awarded.
- The Arctic Star.
- The Africa Star with, if awarded, the first to be earned of the North Africa 1942–43 Clasp, 8th Army Clasp or 1st Army Clasp.
- Either the Pacific Star or Burma Star or, if awarded, either the Burma Clasp or Pacific Clasp respectively, to be worn on the ribbon of that one of these two campaign stars to have been first earned and awarded.
- The Italy Star.
Since only the first of the Atlantic Star, Air Crew Europe Star and France and Germany Star to be earned could be awarded to any one individual, the possible star and clasp combinations for these three campaign stars are:
- The Atlantic Star with either the Air Crew Europe Clasp or the France and Germany Clasp.
- The Air Crew Europe Star with either the France and Germany Clasp or the Atlantic Clasp.
- The France and Germany Star with the Atlantic Clasp. As a result of the different date ranges involved, the earlier period Air Crew Europe Clasp could not be added to the later period France and Germany Star.
Concurrently to the campaigns in the Far East, the Allies launched their final campaign in Northwest Europe on D-Day on 6 June 1944, when British, American and Canadian forces landed on the beaches of Northern France. Over the following eleven months these forces advanced across Western Europe and liberated German occupied France, Belgium and the Netherlands. At the same time the Russians advanced towards Berlin from the East through German occupied Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and Austria. Germany surrendered on 8 May 1945 when the Allies reached Berlin and the war in Europe was brought to an end.
The France and Germany Star was instituted by the United Kingdom in May 1945 for award to those who had served in operations on land or in the air in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland or Germany from 6 June 1944 until the end of active hostilities in Europe on 8 May 1945, both dates inclusive, as well as for Naval and Merchant Navy service directly in support of these land operations.
The France and Germany Star was awarded for entry into operational service in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland and Germany between 6 June 1944 and 8 May 1945 inclusive. The qualifying sea area was south of a line from the Firth of Forth to Kristiansand (South) in the North Sea, east of longitude 6° West in the Bay of Biscay, and in the English Channel, provided such service was directly in support of land operations in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland or Germany.
Air crew who flew on operations against the enemy over Europe or over the sea area in direct support of land operations, qualified by one operational sortie. The qualification for flying personnel posted or employed on air transport or ferrying duties from bases in the United Kingdom was at least three landings in Europe.
Sorties flown from the Mediterranean did not qualify for the award of the France and Germany Star. Similarly, Army personnel who entered Austrian territory during the closing stages of hostilities in Europe, and Naval and Merchant Navy service afloat in the Mediterranean in support of operations in the South of France did not qualify for this award. All these qualified for the award of the Italy Star.
The France and Germany Star was not awarded in addition to the Atlantic Star or the Air Crew Europe Star. Personnel who qualified for the award of two or all three of these campaign stars were awarded only that Star for which they first qualified and a Clasp in respect of the first earned of the other two stars. Since the Air Crew Europe Star could not be earned for service after 5 June 1944, only the Atlantic Clasp could be awarded to a recipient of the France and Germany Star.
Order of wear
Campaign Medals and Stars are not listed by name in the order of wear prescribed by the British Central Chancery of the Orders of Knighthood, but are all grouped together as taking precedence after the Queen's Medal for Chiefs and before the Polar Medals, in order of the date of the campaign for which awarded.
In the order of wear of the Second World War campaign medals, the two campaign medals take precedence after the nine campaign stars, of which the order of wear was determined firstly by their respective campaign start dates, secondly by the campaign's duration and thirdly by their dates of institution.
- The 1939–1945 Star, from 3 September 1939 to 2 September 1945, the full duration of the Second World War.
- The Atlantic Star, from 3 September 1939 to 8 May 1945, the duration of the Battle of the Atlantic and the War in Europe.
- The Arctic Star, from 3 September 1939 to 8 May 1945, the duration of the Battle of the Atlantic and the War in Europe.
- The Air Crew Europe Star, from 3 September 1939 to 5 June 1944, the period until D-Day minus one.
- The Africa Star, from 10 June 1940 to 12 May 1943, the duration of the North African Campaign.
- The Pacific Star, from 8 December 1941 to 2 September 1945, the duration of the Pacific War.
- The Burma Star, from 11 December 1941 to 2 September 1945, the duration of the Burma Campaign.
- The Italy Star, from 11 June 1943 to 8 May 1945, the duration of the Italian Campaign.
- The France and Germany Star, from 6 June 1944 to 8 May 1945, the duration of the Northwest Europe Campaign.
- The Defence Medal, from 3 September 1939 to 2 September 1945, the full duration of the Second World War.
- The War Medal 1939–1945, from 3 September 1939 to 2 September 1945, the full duration of the Second World War.
With effect from 6 April 1952, when a new South African set of decorations and medals was instituted to replace the British awards used to date, the older British decorations and medals applicable to South Africa continued to be worn in the same order of precedence but, with the exception of the Victoria Cross, took precedence after all South African orders, decorations and medals awarded to South Africans on or after that date.
The set of nine campaign stars was designed by the Royal Mint engravers. The stars all have a ring suspender that passes through an eyelet formed above the uppermost point of the star. They are six–pointed stars, struck in yellow copper zinc alloy to fit into a 44 millimetres diameter circle, with a maximum width of 38 millimetres and 50 millimetres high from the bottom point of the star to the top of the eyelet.
The obverse has a central design of the Royal Cypher "GRI VI", surmounted by a crown. A circlet, the top of which is covered by the crown, surrounds the cypher and is inscribed "THE FRANCE AND GERMANY STAR".
The reverse is plain and, as with the other Second World War campaign medals, a no-engraving policy was applied by all but three British Commonwealth countries. The recipient's name was impressed on the reverse for Australians, Indians and South Africans. In the case of Indians this consisted of the recipient's force number, rank, initials, surname and service arm or corps, and in the case of South Africans of the force number, initials and surname, in block capitals.
The clasp was struck in in yellow copper zinc alloy and has a frame with an inside edge that resembles the perforated edge of a postage stamp. It is inscribed "ATLANTIC" and was designed to be sewn onto the medal's ribbon. When the ribbon is worn alone a silver rosette is worn on the ribbon bar to denote the award of the clasp.
The ribbon is 32 millimetres wide with equal width dark blue, white, red, white and dark blue bands. The colours are those of the Union flag and also the national colours of France and the Netherlands.
- 1939–1945 Star
- Atlantic Star
- Arctic Star
- Air Crew Europe Star
- Africa Star
- Pacific Star
- Burma Star
- Italy Star
- Defence Medal
- War Medal 1939–1945
- New Zealand Defence Force - British Commonwealth War And Campaign Medals Awarded To New Zealanders - The France and Germany Star (Access date 18 April 2015)
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- Committee on the Grant of Honours, Decorations and Medals in Time of War (May 1945). "Campaign Stars and the Defence Medal (Regulations)". London: HM Stationery Office. Retrieved 2010-08-01.
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- New Zealand Defence Force - The France and Germany Star Eligibility Rules (Access date 12 April 2015)
- New Zealand Defence Force - The Arctic Star (Access date 12 April 2015)
- New Zealand Defence Force - The Africa Star Eligibility Rules (Access date 12 April 2015)
- New Zealand Defence Force - The Pacific Star Eligibility Rules (Access date 9 April 2015)
- New Zealand Defence Force - The Italy Star Eligibility Rules (Access date 12 April 2015)
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