The Burma Star
11th Dec. 1941 to 2nd Sept. 1945
A star with six
bevelled points. In the centre the initials ‘GRI’ with a crown above and
‘VI’ below, partly circled by a band bearing the words ‘THE BURMA STAR’.
Flat and plain.
Approx. 38 mm across.
Medal and bar bronze.
Approx. 31 mm wide.
Dark blue with a central red stripe (approx. 10mm). the resultant blue
edges each have a central orange stripe (approx. 3.5mm). The red stripe
symbolises the British Commonwealth Forces which took part in the campaign
and the orange stripes symbolise the sun.
The ribbon passes
through a bronze ring (approx. 12 mm diameter) which is fixed through a
loop at the top of the star.
All issued unnamed,
but some have been engraved privately.
One. A recipient who
qualified for both The Burma Star and The Pacific Star and qualified for
The Burma Star first was awarded The Burma Star and was entitled to wear
the bar ‘Pacific’ attached to the ribbon.
A small silver rosette would
represent this when medal ribbons only were worn.
For service in the
Campaign in Burma between 11th December 1941 and 2nd September 1945. The
following qualifications apply to the Army only. Service in Burma between
the above dates qualified. Also, service in Bengal and Assam between 1st
May 1942 and 2nd September 1945; and service in China and Malaya between
16th February 1942 and 2nd September 1945. Visits of over 30 days
duration approved by one of the Commanders-in-Chief also qualified for the
The Burma Star was not issued
automatically, those who thought they qualified had to claim it.
The King’s Own
After active service
in Egypt in 1940, in Syria against Vichy French forces in mid-1941, and in
Libya at the siege of Tobruk during the latter part of 1941 the Battalion
moved to Ceylon and then India where it undertook intensive training for
jungle warfare. In March 1944, as No. 41 and No. 46, Chindit Columns it
was flown in from Imphal to ‘Broadway’ an airstrip in northern Burma, and
operated behind the Japanese lines, where the arduous conditions were as
much of an enemy as the Japanese army.
In late May 1944 both columns
were involved in an extremely fiercely fought action at ‘Blackpool Block’,
a defensive perimeter established south-west of Myitkyina. In June,
despite losses through casualties and disease, the Battalion took part in
operations directed against Mogaung after which, in July, the survivors
were taken by jeep to Myitkyina and flown out to India, having marched
over 1100 miles through extremely difficult terrain supported entirely by
the RAF. The Battalion took no further active part in the war following
56th (The King’s Own) Light
Anti-Aircraft/Anti-Tank Regiment Royal Artillery (Formerly the 4th TA
Battalion The King’s Own Royal Regiment (Lancaster)).
Following service as
part of the British Expeditionary Force in France in 1940, and being
involved in the defence of Dunkirk before being itself evacuated, this
unit went to India in 1941 and fought in various parts of Assam and Burma
between October 1943 and June 1945.
Burma Stars in the museum's collection