Prince Charles medals: Prince of Wales displays medals at Remembrance Sunday


PRINCE CHARLES will lead the nation in remembering those who gave their lives fighting for Britain and the Commonwealth, laying a wreath of red poppies at the Cenotaph.

The Prince of Wales is to perform this solemn duty on behalf of the Queen for the third year in a row, with the monarch looking on from the balcony of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office building. Prince Charles is expected to wear his uniform for the occasion, and underneath the coat he will likely have appointed on his chest his medals. 

Unlike his brother Prince Andrew and father Prince Philip, the Prince of Wales never fought in a conflict, so he never gained any medals for valour in combat.

However, he obtained several awards thanks to his service, rank and titles.

The first medal Charles ever obtained was the Queen’s Coronation medal, issued in 1953 when the monarch was crowned in Westminster Abbey.

This medal was awarded to those attending the coronation in celebration to the solemn day. 

Prince Charles was only four at the time.

As heir apparent to the British throne, Prince Charles was also given the Queen’s Silver Jubilee medal in 1977 and the Golden Jubilee medal in 2002.

These two medals were also awarded to celebrate the important milestones in the Queen’s long reign.

Prince Charles, being the first-in-line to the throne, was never sent on the front line. 

And he even broke royal tradition by not joining the British Armed Forces in 1967 to enrol to university straight after his A-levels.

However, once he joined the Army, he trained vigorously, and served for six years (between 1971 and 1977) in both the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force (RAF).

During those years, he trained in undersea warfare and commanded a Royal Navy Destroyer and learned to fly helicopters and twin-engine jet fighters.

The Prince of Wales also successfully completed the parachute regiment’s jump training.

Charles also commands the Welsh Guards, leading the Trooping the Colour ceremony which marks the Queen’s official birthday every June.

The prince’s military experience granted him several medals.

In 1975 he was awarded the GCB, also known as the Order of the Bath and formerly he Most Honourable Military Oder of the Bath.  

The recipients of this honour are usually senior military officers or civil servants.

Similarly, in 2001, Prince Charles was awarded the Order of Merit, which recognises distinguished service in the armed forces.

The Prince of Wales has also received medals from state members of the Commonwealth or related to this key union of countries.

In 1982, Charles was awarded the Canadian forces decoration for auxiliary forces of the Commonwealth of Nations.

In 1983, Prince Charles was awarded the Queen’s Service Order, issued to the Prince of Wales by the New Zealand’s Government. 

This medal recognises meritorious services to the Crown or similar services within the public sector.

The prince was also one of the 3,000 people receiving the New Zealand 1990 Commemoration medal for the contribution they have made to some aspect of New Zealand’s life.

Finally, the Prince of Wales has been awarded the Knight of Most Noble Order of the Garter.

This medal represents the most prestigious British order of chivalry, and was initially given only to military veterans.

Prince Charles has been a pilot for years.

The royal regularly flew the Hawker Siddeley Andover, Westland Wessex and BAe 146 aircraft of The Queen’s Flight between 1974, when he qualified as both helicopter and jet pilot, and 1994.

He eventually gave up flying in the mid-1990s when he crashed the BAe 146 in the Hebrides.     


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