British Commonwealth Gallantry, Meritorious and Distinguished Service Awards - Emblems and Insignia
About Mentions and Commendations
There are a number of small emblems and insignia which recipients wear either on a specified medal ribbon or directly on their uniform or coat. They are generally awarded for gallantry or distinguished service. The most common are the Mention in Despatches which is a bronze oak leaf, the Queen's Commendation for Brave Conduct, a silver laurel leaf, and the Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air, also a bronze oak leaf. The Queen's Commendations for Brave Conduct and for Valuable Service in the Air are also available to civilians who are awarded a lapel badge in lieu of the medal ribbon emblem.
In 1999 New Zealand replaced these British awards with distinctively New Zealand awards. The Mention in Despatches was replaced by the New Zealand Gallantry Medal. Acts of gallantry which prior to 1999 would have been recognised by the Queen's Commendation for Brave Conduct and the Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air are now recognised by the New Zealand Gallantry Medal. The equivalent acts of bravery are now recognised by the New Zealand Bravery Medal.
Many British awards have a considerable history and the Royal Warrants which instituted them have been subject to significant amendment during their currency. More information on the Royal Warrants and criteria for the British Gallantry, Meritorious and Distinguished Service Awards can be found in the publications listed in the Bibliography. A publication titled ‘British Gallantry Awards' by P.E. Abbott and J.M.E. Tamplin is particularly recommended.
Most Gallantry, Meritorious and Distinguished Service Awards do not have separate Regulations. Instructions for their administration are usually included in the Royal Warrant.
Information on how to find the citations for gallantry awards to New Zealand military personnel for acts of gallantry during the First and Second World Wars and the Vietnam War can be found here.
Media Statement concerning the Mention in Despatches
- 11 February 2019 - Gallant Vietnam War veterans to be formally acknowledged