Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies

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Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies
Volunteer Officers' Decoration (Colonial).jpg
TypeMilitary long service decoration
Awarded forTwenty years meritorious service
Eighteen years service in India
Country Flag of the United Kingdom.svg United Kingdom
Presented by the Monarch of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, and Empress of India
EligibilityOfficers of the Volunteer Forces throughout the British Empire
Post-nominalsVD
StatusDiscontinued in 1899
Established1894
Ribbon - Volunteer Officers' Decoration.png
Ribbon bar
Order of wear
Next (higher) Volunteer Long Service Medal
Next (lower) Volunteer Long Service Medal for India and the Colonies
Related Volunteer Officers' Decoration

The Volunteer Officers' Decoration was instituted in 1892 as an award for long and meritorious service by officers of the United Kingdom's Volunteer Force. In 1894, the grant of the decoration was extended to commissioned officers of Volunteer Forces throughout the British Empire. A separate new decoration was instituted, the Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies, post-nominal letters VD. [1] [2]

Contents

Awarding of this decoration was discontinued in 1899, when it was superseded by the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration and later, in respect of India, by the Indian Volunteer Forces Officers' Decoration. [3] [4]

Origin

The Volunteer Officers' Decoration, colloquially known as the Volunteer Decoration, was instituted by Queen Victoria's Royal Warrant on 25 July 1892. The decoration could be awarded to efficient and thoroughly capable officers of proven capacity for long and meritorious service in the part-time Volunteer Force of the United Kingdom. The qualifying period of service was twenty years. [1]

Institution

On 24 May 1894, the grant of the Volunteer Officers' Decoration was extended by Queen Victoria's Royal Warrant to commissioned officers of Volunteer Forces throughout the British Empire, defined as being India, the Dominion of Canada, the Crown Colonies and the Crown Dependencies. A separate new decoration was instituted, the Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies. This decoration was similar in design to the Volunteer Officers' Decoration, but bore the Royal Cypher "VRI" (Victoria Regina Imperatrix) instead of "VR" (Victoria Regina). [2] [5]

Even so, some Crown Dependencies continued to award the Volunteer Officers' Decoration instead of the Colonial version, until the Efficiency Decoration was instituted in September 1930. [4] [6]

Award criteria

The qualifying period of service was also twenty years, except in India where it was eighteen years. Service in the Volunteer Forces of any portion of the Empire was reckoned as part of the qualifying service required for this Decoration, while half of any previous service in the Permanent Forces of the Empire also counted towards qualification. The award did not confer any individual precedence, but entitled the recipient to use the post-nominal letters VD. [1] [2] [5] [7]

The power of conferring the decoration and of revoking the award was exercised on behalf of the Queen by the Governor-General of India, the Governor-General of the Dominion of Canada or the Governors of the respective Colonies or Dependencies. The names of officers of the Empire who were awarded the decoration, or whose award was revoked, were published in the Official Gazettes of India or of the relevant Crown Colony or Dependency instead of in the London Gazette. [2]

Order of wear

In the order of wear prescribed by the British Central Chancery of the Orders of Knighthood, the Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies takes precedence after the Volunteer Long Service Medal and before the Volunteer Long Service Medal for India and the Colonies. [8]

South Africa

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 which were 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 decorations and medals awarded to South Africans on or after that date. Of the official British medals which were applicable to South Africans, the Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies takes precedence as shown. [8] [9] [10]

Ribbon - Long Service & Good Conduct Medal (SA).png Ribbon - Volunteer Officers' Decoration.png Ribbon - Volunteer Long Service Medal.png

Description

The decoration is an oval skeletal design and was struck in silver, with parts of the obverse in silver-gilt. It is 43 millimetres (1.69 inches) high and 35.5 millimetres (1.4 inches) wide, with a ring suspender formed of silver wire. [4] [5]

Obverse
The obverse is an oak leaf wreath in silver, tied with gold, with the royal cypher "VRI" below the royal crown, both in gold, in the centre. [4] [5]
Reverse
The reverse is plain, with the hallmarks impressed at the bottom. The decoration was awarded unnamed, but was frequently unofficially engraved in various styles. [4]
Ribbon
The ribbon is the same as that of the Volunteer Officers' Decoration, dark green and 1+12 inches (38 millimetres) wide. It is suspended from a silver bar-brooch, decorated with an oak leaf pattern. [1] [4]

Discontinuation

In 1899, except in respect of the Indian Empire where it would later be superseded by the Indian Volunteer Forces Officers' Decoration, the Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies was superseded by the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration, instituted by Royal Warrant on 18 May 1899 and amended by further Warrants on 3 August 1902 and 9 June 1921. [3] [4] [6] [7]

Related Research Articles

Volunteer Officers Decoration Award

The Volunteer Officers' Decoration, post-nominal letters VD, was instituted in 1892 as an award for long and meritorious service by officers of the United Kingdom's Volunteer Force. Award of the decoration was discontinued in the United Kingdom when it was superseded by the Territorial Decoration in 1908, but it continued to be awarded in some Crown Dependencies until 1930.

Air Efficiency Award

The Air Efficiency Award, post-nominal letters AE for officers, was instituted in 1942. It could be awarded after ten years of meritorious service to officers, airmen and airwomen in the Auxiliary and Volunteer Air Forces of the United Kingdom and the Territorial Air Forces and Air Force Reserves of the Dominions, the Indian Empire, Burma, the Colonies and Protectorates.

Decoration for Officers of the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve Award

The Decoration for Officers of the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, post-nominal letters VD until c. 1947 and VRD thereafter, was instituted in 1908. It could be awarded to part-time commissioned officers in the United Kingdom's Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve after twenty years of service as efficient and thoroughly capable officers. The decoration was a Naval version of the Volunteer Officers' Decoration and its successor, the Territorial Decoration.

Efficiency Medal Award

The Efficiency Medal was instituted in 1930 for award to part-time warrant officers, non-commissioned officers and men after twelve years of efficient service on the active list of the Militia or the Territorial Army of the United Kingdom, or of the other Auxiliary Military Forces throughout the British Empire. At the same time a clasp was instituted for award to holders of the medal upon completion of further periods of six years of efficient service.

Efficiency Decoration Award

The Efficiency Decoration, post-nominal letters TD for recipients serving in the Territorial Army of the United Kingdom or ED for those serving in the Auxiliary Military Forces, was instituted in 1930 for award to part-time officers after twenty years of service as an efficient and thoroughly capable officer. The decoration superseded the Volunteer Officers' Decoration, the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration and the Territorial Decoration.

Efficiency Decoration (South Africa) Award

The Efficiency Decoration , post-nominal letters ED, was instituted in 1930 for award to efficient and thoroughly capable part-time officers in the Citizen Force of the Union of South Africa after twenty years of service. The decoration superseded the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration.

Efficiency Medal (South Africa) Award

The Efficiency Medal was instituted in 1930 for award to part-time warrant officers, non-commissioned officers and men after twelve years of efficient service on the active list of the Citizen Force of the Union of South Africa. At the same time, a clasp was instituted for award to holders of the medal upon completion of further periods of six years of efficient service. The medal superseded the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal.

Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers Decoration Award

The Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration, post-nominal letters VD, was established in 1899 as recognition for long and meritorious service as a part-time commissioned officer in any of the organized military forces of the British Colonies, Dependencies and Protectorates. It superseded the Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies in all these territories, but not in the Indian Empire.

Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Award

The Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, initially designated the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve Long Service Medal, was instituted in 1908. It could be awarded to part-time ratings in the United Kingdom's Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve after twelve years of service and good conduct. The medal was a Naval version of the Volunteer Long Service Medal and its successor, the Territorial Force Efficiency Medal.

Permanent Forces of the Empire Beyond the Seas Medal Award

The Permanent Forces of the Empire Beyond the Seas Medal is a long service and good conduct medal, instituted for award to other ranks of the Permanent Forces of the Dominions and Colonies of the British Empire. The medal, also known as the Permanent Overseas Forces Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, was established in 1910 as a single common award to supersede the several local versions of the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal which were being awarded by the various territories.

Volunteer Long Service Medal Award

The Volunteer Long Service Medal was instituted in 1894 as an award for long service by other ranks and some officers of the United Kingdom's Volunteer Force. Award of the medal was discontinued when it was superseded by the Territorial Force Efficiency Medal in 1908.

Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (South Africa) Award

The Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct is a distinctive South African version of the British Medal for Long Service and Good Conduct (Military). It was awarded to members of the Permanent Force of the Union of South Africa who had completed eighteen years of reckonable service.

Distinguished Conduct Medal (Natal) Award

In 1895, Queen Victoria authorised Colonial governments to adopt various British military decorations and medals and to award them to their local military forces. The Colony of Natal introduced this system in August 1895 and, in 1897, instituted the Distinguished Conduct Medal (Natal), post-nominal letters DCM.

Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (Cape of Good Hope) Award

In May 1895, Queen Victoria authorised Colonial governments to adopt various British military medals and to award them to their local military forces. The Cape of Good Hope introduced this system in September 1895 and, in 1896, instituted the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal .

Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (Natal) British Colonial Army medal

In May 1895, Queen Victoria authorised Colonial governments to adopt various British military medals and to award them to their local military forces. The Colony of Natal introduced this system in August 1895 and, in 1897, instituted the Army Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (Natal).

Meritorious Service Medal (Cape of Good Hope) Award

In May 1895, Queen Victoria authorised Colonial governments to adopt various British military medals and to award them to members of their local permanent military forces. The Cape of Good Hope introduced this system in September 1895 and, in 1896, instituted the Meritorious Service Medal .

Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal Award

The Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal was instituted by Queen Victoria in 1899 as a military long service award for part-time members of all ranks in any of the organized military forces of the British Colonies, Dependencies and Protectorates throughout the British Empire. The medal gradually superseded the Volunteer Long Service Medal for India and the Colonies in all these territories, with the exception of the Isle of Man, Bermuda and the Indian Empire.

Meritorious Service Medal (Natal) Award

In May 1895, Queen Victoria authorised Colonial governments to adopt various British military medals and to award them to members of their local permanent military forces. The Colony of Natal introduced this system in August 1895 and, in 1897, instituted the Meritorious Service Medal (Natal).

Meritorious Service Medal (South Africa) Award

In May 1895, Queen Victoria authorised Colonial governments to adopt various British military medals and to award them to their local permanent military forces. The Cape of Good Hope and Colony of Natal instituted their own territorial versions of the Meritorious Service Medal in terms of this authority. These two medals remained in use in the respective territories until after the establishment of the Union of South Africa in 1910.

Volunteer Long Service Medal for India and the Colonies Award

The Volunteer Long Service Medal was instituted in 1894 as an award for long service by other ranks and some officers of the United Kingdom's Volunteer Force. In 1896, the grant of the medal was extended to other ranks and officers who had served in the ranks of the Volunteer Forces throughout the British Empire. A separate new medal was instituted, the Volunteer Long Service Medal for India and the Colonies. Awarding of this medal was discontinued in stages when it was superseded in most territories by the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal in 1899 and in the remainder by the Efficiency Medal in 1930.

References

  1. 1 2 3 4 "No. 26311". The London Gazette . 29 July 1892. p. 4303.
  2. 1 2 3 4 "No. 26516". The London Gazette . 26 May 1894. p. 3115.
  3. 1 2 "No. 27085". The London Gazette . 2 June 1899. p. 3517.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 North East Medals - The Volunteer Officers' Decoration (Accessed 28 June 2015)
  5. 1 2 3 4 South African Medal Website – Colonial Military Forces (Accessed 6 May 2015)
  6. 1 2 "Volunteer Officer's Decoration, George V issue, miniature". www.medal-medaille.com. Retrieved 22 March 2013.
  7. 1 2 "No. 33049". The London Gazette . 22 May 1925. p. 3446.
  8. 1 2 "No. 56878". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 March 2003. p. 3353.
  9. Government Notice no. 1982 of 1 October 1954 - Order of Precedence of Orders, Decorations and Medals, published in the Government Gazette of 1 October 1954.
  10. Republic of South Africa Government Gazette Vol. 477, no. 27376, Pretoria, 11 March 2005, OCLC   72827981