Hands welcomes proper recognition for WWII heroes

Greg Hands M.P. has welcomed the announcement that those who served in the Arctic Convoys and in Bomber Command during the Second World War are now eligible for recognition.

HM The Queen has approved designs for the new awards, which entered production this week. The design for the Arctic Star medal is based on the other WWII Stars, while the Bomber Command Clasp follows the design of the Battle of Britain Clasp.

The Ministry of Defence has opened the application process and will begin to issue the new awards from as early as March. The families of veterans who have died will also be able to apply for the Arctic Star medals and Bomber Command Clasps to be issued posthumously. Up to a quarter of a million veterans and families could be eligible.

Winston Churchill famously singled the Arctic Convoys out as the “most dangerous run of the war”. Likewise, Bomber Command faced extremely high casualty rates, which saw the loss of 55,000 of the 125,000 men who served.

Commenting, Greg Hands M.P. said: “This is a fantastic announcement which will truly recognise the bravery displayed by those who fought for our freedom in the Second World War. I would encourage all eligible veterans and next of kin in Chelsea and Fulham to apply for the new awards.”

Minister of State for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans, Mark Francois added: “All those who served our country in Bomber Command and on the Arctic Convoys deserve nothing but the utmost respect and admiration from us. That’s why I am delighted that these special individuals will in the next few weeks begin to receive the Bomber Command clasp and Arctic Star that they have so long deserved.

“I am also pleased to announce that the families of those no longer alive will also be able to apply for these awards in recognition of their loved one’s bravery.”

For further information on applying can be found here:
http://www.veterans-uk.info/arctic_star_index.htm