The Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment

Silver War Badge


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The Silver War Badge

 

NATIONAL ARCHIVES - The Silver War Badge (SWB), sometimes erroneously called the Silver Wound Badge, was authorised in September 1916 and takes the form of a circular badge with the legend "For King and Empire - Services Rendered" surrounding the George V cypher. The badge was awarded to all of those military personnel who were discharged as a result of sickness or wounds contracted or received during the war, either at home or overseas.


Information provided by Iain Kerr, ( now deceased).

This sterling silver lapel badge was first issued with along with an official certificate of entitlement in 1916. It was intended to be worn in civilian clothing by service personnel who had been honourably discharged due to wounds or sickness, and it was an offence to do so if not entitled. Prior to this it had been the practice of some misguided women to present white feathers to apparently able bodied young men who were not wearing the King's uniform.

Approximately 1,150,000 badges were issued, several contractors including J R Gaunt & Son Ltd of Birmingham being involved in the manufacture.

Each one was uniquely numbered on the reverse, Royal Navy, Merchant Navy, Royal Marines and Royal Air Force having an RN, MN, or RAF prefix respectively. Other prefixes for Australia and South Africa (A & SA) were also used.

It is through these serial numbers that details of the recipients may be researched by checking the Medal Rolls, although only those awarded to the men and women serving in the British Army can be researched at the Public Record Office, Kew. The rolls give the recipients regimental number, rank, unit on discharge, badge number, date of enlistment, date of discharge, whether sick or wounded and whether served overseas. Certain units gave details of the actual wound or sickness.

The medal rolls for the SWB at Kew are in numerical order. The SWB had an initial issue of around 355,000 between September 1916 and March 1918. These have plain numbers on the rear and are of better quality than subsequent stampings. A second series from March 1918 up to September 1918 took the numbers up to 450,000. A third series from September 1918 to December 1919 have a "B" prefix and are numbered from 1 up to 450,000. From December 1919 to January 1920 about 5,000 were issued, with "O" prefix. From January 1920 to March 1922 the series had plain numbers and ran from 150,000 to 520,000. After 1st April 1918, RAF men were issued with badges prefixed RAF and over 10,000 were issued. The Royal Navy also had a separate series, prefixed "RN" with at least 43,000 issued.

The number on the SWB is not the regimental number.


Information on SWB Armlet  - http://www.tugsworld.com/bonzo/gen/Military/Military%20Personnel/times.htm


Silver War Badge holders in Royal West Kent Regiment

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

Y

Z


This page was last updated on 30-Mar-2013.

Copyright   © 2008 Janet & Richard Mason