Background: The Military medal (MM) was instituted by Royal Warrant on 7 April 1916 to reward acts of bravery that were not deemed high enough to warrant the award of the DCM. The MM was a level three gallantry award for Other Ranks of the Army and other Services, for bravery in battle on land. Warrant Officers also received this award although they were also eligible to receive the Military Cross. The First World War saw over 115,000 medals awarded along with 5,796 second award bars, 180 third awards and one fourth award. The majority of citations for awards in WW1 do not survive. The London Gazette does not include a citation of the circumstances of the action, only the name, rank, number, regiment and home town of the recipient but may occasionally mention the theatre where the award was gained. The Tank Corps however retained all of their citations and this was subsequently compiled into a book. Regimental histories sometimes reveal further details but again this is scarce information. Regimental diaries seldom mentioned the awards to private soldiers. WW2 saw some 15,000 awards along with 177 second award bars and one third award bar. Following the Government led review of military honours in 1993, the MM ceased to be awarded and was replaced by the Military Cross for all ranks. The final awards of the MM were for service in Northern Ireland. The MM is always issued named, bearing the name, rank, number and regiment of the recipient in impressed san serif upper case letters around the rim.
Design: The medal is solid silver, 36 mm in diameter and hangs on a swivelling ornamental suspender. The obverse bears the effigy of the reigning monarch at the time of the award and the reverse bears the text, “FOR BRAVERY IN THE FIELD” in four lines, surrounded by a laurel wreath surmounted by the Royal Cypher and Imperial Crown. The ribbon is dark blue with three equal vertical stripes of white and two equal stripes of red.
Bars: Subsequent awards of the medal are denoted by the wearing of a silver bar bearing laurel wreaths.