1939 – 1945 Star
The 1939–1945 Star is a military campaign medal instituted by the United Kingdom on 8 July 1943 for award to British and Commonwealth forces for service in the Second World War. Two clasps were instituted to be worn on the medal ribbon, Battle of Britain and Bomber Command.
The 1939–1945 Star was awarded for specified periods of operational service overseas between 3 September 1939 and either 8 May 1945 in Europe or 2 September 1945 in the Far East theatre. The broad criteria were 180 days of service between these dates, with more specific criteria depending on the service arm.
- Naval personnel qualified after 180 days afloat between certain specified dates in areas of operations as laid out in the regulations.
- Army personnel had to complete 180 days of service in an operational command.
- Airborne troops qualified if they had participated in any airborne operations and had completed 60 days of service in a fully operational unit.
- Air Force aircrew qualified after 60 days of service in an operational unit, including at least one operational sortie. The 1939–1945 Star was also awarded to crews of transport aircraft who flew over certain specified routes. Aircrew of fighter aircraft engaged in the Battle of Britain was also awarded the Battle of Britain Clasp, while aircrew of bomber aircraft who participated in at least one operational sortie in a Bomber Command operational unit was awarded the Bomber Command Clasp in 2013.
- Ground crew and other Air force personnel qualified upon completion of 180 days of service in an area of the operational army command.
- Merchant Navy personnel qualified upon completion of 180 days of service with at least one voyage made through an operational area.