The 1914 Star, also known as the Mons Star, was a campaign medal of the British Empire, for service in World War one.
This Bronze Star was authorised in April, 1917, to be awarded to those who served in France or Belgium on the strength of a unit, or service in either of those countries between 5th August and midnight on 22nd/23rd November 1914. The former date is the day after Britain’s declaration of war against the Central Powers, and the closing date marks the end of the First Battle of Ypres.
Recipients were officers and men of the pre-war British army, specifically the British Expeditionary Force (B.E.F or the Old Contemptibles), who landed in France soon after the outbreak of the War and who took part in the Retreat from Mons (hence the nickname ‘Mons Star’). 365,622 were awarded in total. Recipients of this medal also received the British War Medal and Victory Medal. These three medals were sometimes irreverently referred to as Pip, Squeak and Wilfred.
In October, 1919, the King graciously pleased to approved and sanctioned the award of the bar to this star to all those who had been ‘under fire’ in France or Belgium during, or between the above dates.
It should be noted that there are two categories of recipients (1) those who served the requisite period under fire, and (2) those who served the same period not under fire.
The Bar is of bronze and bears on it “5th Aug – 22nd Nov. 1914” There are small holes on each corner enabling it to be sewn on to the ribbon. Those entitled to the bar wear a small silver rose in the centre of the ribbon when the medal is not worn.
A very similar medal, the 1914-15 Star, was also issued, but no person could receive both awards.