Peter Hain has urged eligible veterans and next of kin to apply for the Arctic Star and the Bomber Command Clasp after it was announced that the application process had been opened. The MP for Neath said, ‘it is only fitting that these awards be issued in recognition of the great bravery of those who contributed to two very important campaigns of the Second World War.’
“The sacrifice these men made and the daring and dangerous missions they undertook risking life and limb, often in terrible conditions, keeping Britain going and fighting back fascist oppression makes this a richly deserved award, which is why I’m urging any veterans or relatives in the Neath Constituency to apply for them.”
The qualifying period for the Arctic Star is “service of any length,” recognising the particularly severe conditions experienced by those who served in the Arctic. Eligibility is extended beyond those who served on the Arctic Convoys to include all who served north of the Arctic Circle in World War Two and members of all three Services in addition to the Merchant Navy, who delivered vital supplies to Russia.
Veterans and widows will receive priority in being issued the awards. Other next of kin may also apply now but will have to wait slightly longer to receive their award.
The design for the Arctic Star is based on the other World War Two Stars, whilst the Bomber Command Clasp is to be worn on the ribbon of the 1939 to 1945 Star. It follows the design of the Battle of Britain Clasp and has been approved by Her Majesty the Queen on the basis of recommendations made by the Royal Mint Advisory Committee.
The relevant application forms are available from Mr Hain’s constituency office, 39 Windsor Road, Neath, SA11 1NB and can be found on the Veterans UK website, where further details of the criteria for eligibility can also be found. Alternatively, applications can be made by telephoning the MOD Medal Office on 08457 800 900 for further details.