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Following the refusal of the Government Medal Review team, to fully review the British Cold War Veterans formal submission for a Cold War medal, especially considering that politicians were the recipients of honours and awards exchanged between various countries and alliances for their service and leadership during this period, and promises of a full and comprehensive review, we made a freedom of information request to the Cabinet Office for copies of minutes of meetings to determine who was responsible for making the decision not to review our submission, and the reasons why?

Despite the Cabinet Office being responsible for setting up the process of the Government Medal Review it maintains that it does not hold the required information and has no responsibility for records of the medal review.

Having followed a lengthy process of challenging the Cabinet Office on this matter, it is now in the hands of the Information Commissioner’s Office to consider and to make a decision.

In their latest letter dated 17th June 2016 The Information Commissioner’ Office advises: “The Cabinet Office is arguing that it does not hold the requested information because it is not responsible for the Military Medal Review Team’s records under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. The Commissioner considers that this might not be the case, and so has asked further questions to assist him in his determination.

Once the second batch of submissions has been received the Commissioner should be able to issue a decision notice for this case.”

The BCWV continues to fight for proper recognition for all those who served in HM Armed Forces during the Cold War and thanks everyone for their support.


  1. Terry Watkinson says:

    I served 6 years during the cold war from 1966 – 1972 & I also think it is inappropriate that we never received any recognition for our service. Keep up the good work.

  2. John Adams says:

    It’s nice to know that it is still ongoing and there are others who feel the need to sort this out , I served for 9 years majority of it in Germany , be good to get some recognition , did have its moments…….

  3. Bob says:

    There was a number on TV to call to receive this medal. I was not able to get the complete number however. It was something 855 cold war. Can you please send me the complete number so I can call to get the medal for friend. Thanks!

  4. David R Oldham says:

    During the mid 1960s to the early 1970s I served 8 years in EBty The 1st Regiment Royal Horse Artillery and spent time guarding a SAS (Nuclear munitions site) with Canadians and Americans in West Germany. We overlooked the East German Boarder and Manned Lookout Towers and we was issued with live ammunition. We was on Alert for several weeks. After we finished our stay of duty we returned to our home base in Detmold and resumed regular NBC exercises on regular basis. We was on Alert for a number of years. I feel this Government should recognize all service men and women that served during the Cold War Crisis and award them the appropriate medal

  5. coldwarvet says:

    This was something we are not aware of or connected with and we do not have the number in question.

  6. Kevin Day says:

    Served from 1972 to 81. No recognition, brilliant work lads

  7. Ian. says:

    It would be a good start for the new Prime Minister to recognise this Medal as with the NDM, I served as a Territorial in an infantry regiment for 14 years, served in NATO exercise’s and numerous camps in Germany, if the “balloon” went up our deployment were Germany. I don’t suppose I will ever understand why the continual lack of recognition for our Troops/services, whether Regular/Territorial, Auxiliary or Reserve.

  8. David says:

    RAF1966-1972…. ’70 to’72 with 92sqn line service crew and QRA battleflight RAF Gutersloh. Some busy times with Ivan’s MIGS up and down the border.
    All services played a big part, as our kids only speak Russian by choice. Best of luck to the BCWV.

  9. B Smith says:

    I served in Germany in the Cold War and we all knew that we were there just to try ang delay the Russians for 15 minutes so we could get our big birds flying. Should things have kicked off we knew we would all die but we did it anyway. A medal is the least they could give us, I’m sure most vets would pay for it themselves.? By the way I also served in Cyprus, Africa, and British Honduras seeing action in all of them none of which I received any medals for? Yet these same MP’s award themselves MBE’s, CBE’s Knighthood’s and are willing to receive any other awards they can get their sticky hands on just for working overtime doing an office job in most cases and drinking subsidised taxpayers booze? Then they wonder why the British Public absolutes hate them. Solider on, Give us our Cold War Medal???

  10. Frank cawthron says:

    I served from 1958 to 1962 front lone in Cyprus any other country would have honoured their veterans by now I was called up for National Service so had no option but to serve my country.

  11. David Giraud says:

    Signed up in Jan 59′ demobbed in July 81. During this time I was posted BAOR in jul/Aug 59 for approx 6 months and then posted back to UK for approx 6 months, then back to Germany, posted to East Africa and Aden in Aug 63. On returning from Middle East posted to Tidworth for 2 years and then back to Germany,Cyprus in 74 for 6 months, then back to Germany. 75 and 76 in Catterick and then back to Germany until demob.

  12. Chris Rogers says:

    A mate of mine said the BAOR medal had been approved by the awards office? The government was keeping it quiet due to cost of issuing a million. Any truth in this rumour?

  13. Chris Hall says:

    I serviced from 1966 until 1969 the again in 1974 until 1982 of which 2years were spent in West Berlin right against the wall,

  14. I served in RN 78/90 shadowing Russian warships and running up and down Crimean coast to get them to flash up there radars hairy times but it had to be done. I was willing to serve my country and if the need came sacrifice my life, unlike these MPs (who decide whether we are recognised or not)who just pillage this country and have the right of choice whether they speak English or Russian no thanks to them the spineless few

  15. Roy Hammett says:

    I served 2 tours in Germany 1955 to 58 and 1965 to 68 surely a medal is not a lot to ask for.we kept the Russians back. this would not have happened if we had not bean there.The Americans have been recognised, somebody seems to have forgotten that we were also in the 2nd Allied tactical Air force. regards Roy

  16. Frank Clark says:

    I served from 1963 to 1970. Four years in BAOR Detmold attached to 3RHA, replacing
    1RHA. To think we would have been toast in seconds!! Last armistice day a naval veteran commented to me on seeing me in blazer and beret “No medals?” I find that
    quite humiliating knowing how close to the edge we were. A national disgrace!!

  17. Derek Brown says:

    Served RN 71-81 UK waters, Mediterranean, Baltic, Caribbean, Anti Terrorist operations Northern Ireland, Cod war x 2, plus constant threat of Soviet Union kicking off. Very rough seas, stress, tention, injuries, we didn’t join the forces to die but if the shit had hit the fan then like a 100 yrs ago we would have done so in our thousands, so come on Westminster do something which will have the public singing your praises instead of calling you..
    Award those that would have paid the ultimate sacrifice… with a second thought..

  18. Jim Oakes says:

    Keep up with the campaign having served in West Germany in the 70’s as a medic at RAF Wegberg I can say that our servicemen and women died and we’re injured on an annual basis during military exercises to ensure we had a robust and effective response in place. They at the very least deserve recognition.

  19. Micky Flude says:

    Yes ,as it has been said before ,we service men where in germany just to help delay
    the russians advance should the cream egg hit the fan, the baloon go up etc ,i spent 14 years of my life in baor in 2nd Royal Tank Rgt, cyclops/ajax/hutsman,we where crashed out too many times to count,1 minute your in the naafi the next crashout all grab your kit preprepared mount tanks off you go into field for sometimes 6 weeks,of course all service men that served as part of cold war should be recognised with a medal as well as the GSM already issued,it was bloody hard work but alot of good memories.

  20. Martin Palmer says:

    I was given a gsm for serving in northern Ireland surely every solider who served in Germany should be.given medals which h they earned I served in Germany from 1980_1983
    Each veteran should be given boar medal and cold war medal you can buy them but why should we

  21. Raymond Gallacher says:

    Royal artillery Gibraltar 1953 to 1956 always on standby

  22. Bill Wells says:

    It sometimes feels like we are hitting our heads against a brick wall of upper-class arrogance as they continue to award each other baubles for very little but those of us who served in BAOR (where 600+ did die by the way) just get fobbed off. Is the UK now the only country in NATO NOT to recognise such service? (RE/REME 1961-72+3 in reserve, 3 years in BAOR)

  23. John Brogan says:

    I served in West Berlin from Jan 83 to May 86. Surely serving 109 miles BEHIND the Iron Curtain desrerves recognition. A Cold War Medal is a must.

  24. Mike Jones says:

    Served 11years in the Royal Engineers, with postings to BAOR, West Berlin, Northern Ireland, South Atlantic and Home service (England), 1972 to 1984.
    Got into a shoving matches with Soviet Army personnel during Allied Forces Day parades in Berlin, just to keep them along the allowed routes as spectators and stop them going where they shouldn’t.
    I believe we all deserve recognition for our efforts.
    Keep up the great work BCWV!

  25. Stephen Manley says:

    Like Mr John Brogden above I too served in Germany in the early 80’s and visited Berlin a couple of times where, as a very young and inexperienced soldier I was exposed to a very real threat. My father also spent many years in Germany in the 1960’s while my mother brought up my siblings and me. The only coldness here is the hearts of those who judge a Cold War medal not worthy because they were most likely never really affected by it. I say to the awards and medals committee, find the warmth in your hearts and do the right thing, recognise the workload of every soldier on duty during the BOAR era and present them with the Cold War or as suggested above, a BOAR medal, it’s the only right thing to do.

  26. david kearton says:

    Well said Stephen.There’s no doubting the enormous effort by the army in the cold war. I may be wrong, but by suggesting a baor medal tho’, does that exclude the navy and air force ? As it was a joint effort, the cold war medal may be the only option worth ‘fighting’ for.

  27. Sid Cameron says:

    I served in the RN Fleet Air Arm between 1973-78. 18 months of that on HMS Ark Royal and we knew that we were there to get the aircraft off in the event of a war and that we were expendable. I spent another 18 months on HMS Euryalus at sea serving with 829 Squadron of wasps. I think that some recognition of our war is very appropriate.

  28. bELKNAP says:

    I was going to post this under “Americans Stand by UK Vets” category but couldn’t figure out how to leave a comment there…..(I’m a Yank)…. but I think Cold War Medal for all NATO Cold War veterans is deserved and the right thing to do. They protected us all, often at great cost and sacrifice, with many paying the ultimate cost in confrontations all over the globe. Also thought interesting that Britain P.M. May invoked Cold War at least three times with regard to common effort required to defeat Soviet Union in her speech to U.S. congressional Republican party retreat in Philadelphia 1/26/2017.

  29. do you really think these spineless politicians will me you were just a number and when you had served your purpose of protecting them your expected to go away and crawl under a stone to disappear, the stone the same politicians crawled out from under to say no to the recognition of our brave men and women who were prepared to sacrifice there life to enable the rest of the western world to live as they pleased and not under a soviet tyranny

  30. Geert Mahieu says:

    If you have facebook I would like to invite you on the international Cold War Veterans page I am the Chairman of the Cold War Veterans NATO 1945-1991 1BE Corps.

  31. I spent my time with the Parachute Regiment 70s-80s

  32. Gordon R. Myles says:

    In 1946 I was called up into the army I served in Italy with the il Trieste with 24th infantry bge in Suez with 65coy RASC and Salonika in Greece in Trieste we manned the southern end of Churchills line of defence we got no recognition at all. I would be delighted to join you I am now 89yrs old

  33. Andrew Moult says:

    I served from 1975 to 1984, and encountered several occasions to challenge SOXMIS and I consider strongly that we should have recognition for our time arriving during the Cold War as this was a formidable and very real time in history.

  34. Rowan Fisher says:

    I served between 1971 & 1977, just over three of those years attached to 36 Hvy AD Reg, BAOR, in Dortmund. Most of our time was spent on field exercises around Northern Germany, working with a multitude of fellow NATO Nations in preparation for the defence of Europe against the then seen aggressor, the USSR and their Eastern block allies. We were on stand-by for most of that time, even when the respective batterys were serving in NI.

    I do not want to parade with honours undiserved, I do however want some small recognition for our service. Just because there was no Kosovo or Iraq it does not mean that we were any less ready to lay down our lives for our great nation during what was a politicaly unstable time.

    When looking at recognition, we in the BAOR must greatfully acknowledge and include the support of both the RAF and the Royal Navy, we were all in it together.

    Let’s not be bitter, but use reasonable discussion and debate to make and prove our point.

  35. David MacPhail says:

    Again its great to see that people are willing to stand up and be counted, thanks so much for that its refreshing to see. The Government dodge many bullets in an attempt at saving cash by laying down rules specific to why medals are not issued for the cold war. I am thinking they are waiting for us all to die and disappear. Trying to get them to change their minds is almost an impossible task even when you have right on your side.

  36. it seems to me that no progression has been made since june 2016 shouldn’t people be lobbying parliament I see all kinds of people protesting outside of parliament for all kinds of things isn’t it about time we done some of it ourselves. being nice and following protocol has never got anyone anywhere with these spineless career politicians

  37. Rod Harrison says:

    I served 71 to 80 in the RFA. It was the general view at the time that a pre-emptive nuke strike on Moscow or London would never happen but a tit for tat take out of NATO and Soviet Naval task forces in mid Atlantic was how it would playout followed by a minor politburo member and a minor member of the Royal family dropping flowers on the ocean to show the governments gave a shit. In the UK case they obviously didn’t.

  38. Vervoort Thierry says:

    Hello I have served in Germany from march 85 to september 2003
    ONU Mission in Ex-yougoslavia in March 1995 to July 1995
    19 Artillery Regiment in Siegen RFA and Artillery Bataillon in Altenrath RFA.
    1th Caporal Chef

  39. Mark Salisbury says:

    Served in the RN 1974 – 1981. Served on HMS Hermes, Londonderry and Hydra. Transfered to submarines serving on HMS/M Dreadnought. Patrolled the sea above and below the waterline. While in boats we would patrol various areas of the seas monitoring Russian ships and trawlers and was prepared to go to war at short notice. I know no weapons were fired but the psychological stress of not knowing when things would turn hot from one day to the next was always there.

  40. Tom Gundry says:

    My name is Tom Gundry I served from 1960 to 1975 as regular and reserve infantryman in BAOR, Swaziland, Cyprus, N. Ireland (Only for 14 days)and UK. I have nothing to show for my service unlike other NATO troops. I knew when in BAOR 62/64 that when the Russians came we would just be a bump in the road (or as our American friends say “crispy critters”)as the Russians reached the French coast in 10/14 days. How many of our politicians would have had the guts to stand with us then or now. I, and me comrades have earned more than a tin veterans badge! Get on with recognising our service NOW!

  41. Bob Seymour says:

    I agree with most of the comments expressed here as I served in HM submarines 1964 -69 most of the time on clandestine operations in Black and Baltic seas, ok it was a job we were paid to do but who gives some faceless civil servant the right to decide on who deserves recognition in peacekeeping
    Bob Seymour

  42. Karl Keable says:

    I agree with a lot of the above comments, I also served in subs and spend most of it up north under the ice, would be nice to be recognised for our service in those extraordinary times.

  43. Norman Walthew says:

    Hi I served in the Royal Navy from Jan 1983 to late 1991 serving within the Sumbarine service pushing Hunter Killers around. I agree that we were paid to do it, and it was our choice to serve. But a small token of recognition for the important job we were fufiling is surely not a lot to ask!

  44. Colin Brown says:

    What about the RAF and the QRA crews? Ground crews living with an armed nuclear bomber knowing that the next time that damned bell rang you could have only 4 minutes to live before the missiles arrived. How many had mental breakdowns as a result of knowing that?

  45. David Peters says:

    I served from 1961 to 1970 and a lot of that time was in Germany. We had lots of quick train exercises, and members of our armed forces were killed training to protect the west, some of them were my comrades.They were very dangerous times. I think we all had near misses through lack of sleep. I was proud to serve my country. So country please be proud of us and present us with a cold war medal. We all deserve it.

  46. andrew reeves says:

    it was an honour to serve my country and should be reconised as such,its issue to veterans of this era should be hailed and comemorated as much as jubilee medals which went to every tom,dick,and harry.


    I served in BAOR between 1986 and 1995 and was told if the Soviets did invade I and my family, (both my wife and 2 very young daughters) would more than likely be dead within 12hrs. That is what we were living with on a daily basis. However todays government doesn’t care in the slightest the situation we who served may have been faced at that time. All they care about is saving a few pennies, bugger the poor Tommy who puts his life on the line to protect their privileged lifestyle. It is just the same with the police. They praise how hard the armed forces and emergency services work and how grateful we should be regarding their sacrifices as long as they don’t have to give them any monetary recognition be it as a bonus or medalic recognition.

  48. Peter Turner says:

    On 20th September 2017 an article appeared in The Telegraph in which Sir Michael Fallon said consideration is now being given by the UK government to award a medal to drone pilots involved in the latest fight with IS. In support of this move he stated that the criteria for the award of medals should no longer be based around the “risk and rigour” test. Given that drone pilots sit in air conditioned cubicles hundreds, if not thousands of miles from the area of conflict, surely Fallon’s comments should be used to help push forward the efforts to obtain medal recognition for all who served in the Cold War era from 1945 to 1989 and especially those who served in BAOR, RAFG and submarine surveillance. Any thoughts on this?

  49. Frank Dutton says:

    I served in the RN and submarines 1972-1984. We were at the hot end on many patrols.

  50. Jim says:

    Seems to me the government have produced the veterans badge to short circuit calls for either a National Defence Medal or Cold War Medal, yet if the previous post about a medal for drone pilots is correct, then this would be seen as an award of a medal justified by being for present times of action?

  51. Jack Tar says:

    I served on boats (RN) during 80’s and can say that what we did was most definitely not ‘for excercise’. It was tough, stressful, exciting and at times just a tad risky. As such I am very proud to be able to say I served and I always will be. I would also be extremely proud to wear a medal in recognition of my service (which for the record did include ‘risk’ and ‘vigour’) and hope this will be the case some day soon, please accept my thanks for continuing to push for this to happen.

  52. Robert Richardson says:

    I served in the old West Germany from 1975-1993. During that time I experienced the loss of many friends in accidents on exercise, in NI or elsewhere. We also had our fair share of emergency call outs, 2 of which in the 80s nearly took us to war (though many people are not even aware of them)

    Since I left the army in the early 90s I have served 6 tours in Afghanistan and 2 tour of Iraq, all with infantry units

    Politicians are crap, never met a decent one. I avoid them it at all possible.

    This medal should have been issued many years ago

  53. Mick Pound says:

    I completed two tours in Baor (’72-’74 AND ’84-’86). Whilst I support the issue of a medal for BAOR service, I do not think this will happen as long as unscrupulous marketeers are producing ‘tin trinkets’ depicting them as ‘Cold War Medals’ and people are buying them. If a medal has not been awarded to you, then it is not an official medal and you should not buy one or wear one. Stop these cheap trinkets and then, maybe, the government will take this request for an official medal more seriously.

  54. Jim Rowbotham says:

    I served in R.N.1967-1974 only leaving due to marital separation (I would have served my full time AND more).Volunteered YES volunteered for service in Northern Ireland AND the cod wars of the 1970’s. Awarded GSM for service in Ireland I think it’s only right that everyone who served their country during the cold war in ANY capacity should be given recognition for their service to “keeping the peace”. We’re not asking for cash, just the recognition deserved.

  55. Nick Weber says:

    I served between 1974 and 1994 before being made redundant. My service in Germany between 1977 and 1988 included postings to Monchengladbach, Detmold and Soest constantly on alerts and exercises.
    I just want to say thank you to all those who have posted on this site and to all those at British Cold War Veterans for continuing to support and fight for this well deserved medal.

  56. Gerald Gray says:

    I served between 1972 & 1980 My service in Werl West Germany. Between October 1975 & May 1980 mad some good friends .and got to see a lot of Germany meat a lot of people . served with the German Army on a CPX exercise between British. And German Army . loved very moments l had .

  57. Richard Dawnay says:

    I served in the Royal Air Force from 1959 to 1968 and spent time on both the V Bomber Force in the UK and at Geilenkirchen, Germany, on Canberras. Every time the hooter went off, day or night, you had no idea whether it was for real, or for an exercise. And when a certain American was assiniated…….. . Good fun, excellent comrades, but extremely nerve racking.
    Been there, done it, got the tee-shirt, but no medal to pin on it.

  58. Brian Lamont says:

    Served from 62/76,And was in Germany from 66/76 in Herford,Hohne,Berlin and Munster.

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