First World War (1914-1918) British medals

The First World War, or "The Great War", brought the British troops of the Egypt Expeditionary Force to the land of Israel, then called "Palestine". The Egypt Expeditionary Force was formed in March 1916 to command the growing British and British Empire military forces in Egypt during World War I, securing British rule in Egypt with the Suez Canal as a major strategic asset. The force consisted of British and Egyptian troops, as well as soldiers from India, Australia, and New Zealand. The force's role evolved from a defense of Egypt to the invasion of Palestine, fighting against the Axis forces, in this case the Turks, led by German officers.

Campaign Medals

There were no specific campaign medals for this battle area. The most common WW1 medals were the 1914 -15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal for the allied forces. Soldiers who were active in the first two years of the war were entitled to the 1914 -15 Star.

The medals presented below were awarded to the family of William Brown, Essex Regiment, killed during the first battle of Gaza, 26th March 1917. William earned the 1914 -15 Star for his part in the fight around Gallipoli in 1915.


WW1 Trio: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal

WW1 Trio: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
WW1 Trio: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal

Medal group for William Brown, killed during the first battle of Gaza, 26th March 1917


Jerusalem Memorial

Jerusalem Memorial

Jerusalem memorial
Miniature ribbons of WW1 service medals and the General Service Medal with Palestine clasp

Samples of Decorations for actions in Palestine during WWI

the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George

General Allenby was awarded the Knight Grand Cross of this important order in 1918 for his part in the Palestine campaign.

See here pictures of the award ceremony in Jerusalem.




Distinguished Conduct Medal

A Rare Great War Palestine D.C.M. to Corporal A.S. Seal, Machine Gun Corps, Previously Royal West Kent Regiment, Was Present at Gallipoli, and in Palestine During the Second and Third Battles of Gaza, and the Capture and Defence of Jerusalem. Distinguished Conduct Medal, G.V.R. (49539 L. Cpl. A.S. Seal. 160 Coy. M.G.C.)

D.C.M. London Gazette 28.3.1918 49539 L./C. A.S. Seal, M.G.C. (Sevenoaks)
'For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. When a machine gun had been temporarily lost owing to all the crew being casualties, he at once went forward with his officer under heavy fire, recovered the gun and later returned for the tripod. He showed splendid courage and coolness.'

49539 Corporal Amos Sidney Seal, D.C.M.; born Sevenoaks, Kent, 1896; enlisted as 3677 Private, 2/4 Royal West Kent Regiment, 27.2.1915, saw action in Gallipoli, August to December 1915; transferred 160 Company Machine Gun Corps, 12.7.1916; served in Egypt and Palestine at the Second Battle of Gaza, 17-19.4.1917; the Third Battle of Gaza, 27.10-7.11.1917; the Capture of Jerusalem, 7-9.12.1917; and the Defence of Jerusalem, 27-30.12.1917.



Military Medal

A Great War 'Egyptian Theatre' M.M. to Sergeant S. Bishop, Machine Gun Corps, Late Shropshire Light Infantry. Military Medal, G.V.R. (7217 Cpl. S. Bishop. 180/Coy. M.G.C.).
M.M. London Gazette 25.4.1918 Cpl. S. Bishop 180th Coy. M.G.Corps (Cleobury).

7217 Sergeant Samuel Bishop, M.M., born 1896; enlisted Shropshire Light Infantry, 9.11.1914, before transferring to the 180th Company Machine Gun Corps for service during the Great War; the latter joined the 60th (2/2nd London) Division, 29.6.1916; the Division moved to Egypt to join the E.E.F. for the campaign in Palestine, June/July 1917; between October 1917-February 1918 the Division took part in the 3rd Battle of Gaza; the Capture of Beersheba; the Capture of the Sheria Position; the Capture and subsequent Defence of Jerusalem, and the Capture of Jericho; on 17.5.1918 Bishop's Company along with the three other M.G.C. companies within the 60th Division joined within a single command structure taking their new battalion number from their division's number, to form the 60th Battalion M.G.C. Bishop transferred to the Army Reserve, 28.3.1919.




Indian Order of Merit, 2nd Class - Reward of Valor

I.O.M. Gazette 878 of 26/4/1919:

Jemadar Amar Singh, 36th Jacob's Horse
On the 23rd September 1918 during action with the enemy, this officer was sent out with a troop to endeavor to get around the enemy's flank, the regiment being held up frontally. He located six machine-guns which he promptly charged and captured with several prisoners thus greatly lightening the task of the regiment and enabling it to push on.

Only 10 I.O.M.'s were awarded to recipients from this regiment for WW1, 4 awards were made for the Egypt / Palestine theatre of war.