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Volunteer Reserves Service Medal

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Volunteer Reserves Service Medal


Silver ovular disc bearing the sovereign's effigy on the obverse and the inscription For Service in the Volunteer Reserves on the reverse.


Green with central bands of dark blue, red and light blue flanked with yellow. A total throw together that's supposed to represent all parties.


Five year increments subsequent to the medal proper.

About the medal

Awarded for ten years' tolerance of being fucked from pillar to post on meagre wages, this was the first (and so far only) attempt at homogenising long service awards for all branches of the Armed Forces. Introduced in 1999, this medal replaced a gamut of decorations and medals for the reserve branches of the RAF, Army and Royal Navy, namely:

  • Territorial Army
  • Royal Naval Reserve
  • Royal Marines Reserve
  • Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
  • Royal Auxiliary Air Force

Its introduction both pleased and angered many. Formerly because it simplified the system and cut some service time for medallic eligibility for those in the TA and RNR (12 & 15 years respectively); and latterly because officers (who used to receive decorations) had to slum it with the rest of the proles and get a medal with no use of post-nominal letters.

This medal removed some of the colour and variety from a long established system and moves are afoot to do precisely the same for its regular counterparts. A 'one size fits all' approach - whilst economic and logical - goes against the grain of accepted service ethics with inter-service rivalry, and it remains to be seen if this plague of 'Jointery' will fall at the second fence - medal-wise anyway.

Regular service, up to 5 years, can be counted at half-rate for this award (i.e. a maximum of 2 1/2 years.)

Contrary to popular belief, the letters VRSM are a made up acronym used by collectors and are not to be used post-nominally.

Awards and Decorations Peculiar to the Reserve Forces


Honours, Awards and Decorations
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