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 RIC DMP Medals

Royal Visits

These medals were awarded to all members of the Dublin Metropolitan Police and Royal Irish Constabulary who were on duty at a place visited by the Queen Victoria on her visit to Ireland in 1900 and the visit of King Edward VII in 1903.

The medals were issued named and would contain the name of the officer and force he served with, these were abbreviated on the medals to R.I.C. for the Royal Irish Constabulary and D.M.P. for the Dublin Metropolitan Police the medals also contained the rank of the recipient.

The purpose of Queen Victoria’s visit to Ireland was partially to encourage Irish men to join the British Army to fight in the Boer war. There was considerable opposition by Irish Nationalists to the visit and the Queen’s popularity had diminished considerable in Ireland by 1900, Dublin Corporation to refuse to congratulate her son, the Prince of Wales, on his marriage to Princess Alexandra of Denmark, or to congratulate the royal couple on the birth of their oldest son, Prince Albert Victor.

The medal awarded for the 1900 Royal visit showed Queen Victoria on the front, blue ribbon and shamrock design suspension bar. The medal was on the same design for both R.I.C. and D.M.P.

The medal for the 1903 visit shows King Edward on the front, pale green ribbon and the same shamrock type suspension bar.

When purchasing medals always try and get them with the Shamrock Suspension bar as I have seen a single bar sell for nearly as much as a medal. There are also some copies of these bars around, the copies are cast in a mould and do not have pins, replacement ribbon is widely available.

The back of the medal is of the same design on both medals. The image depicts Britannia with a harp at her feet with Kingstown Harbour (now Dun Laoghaire) in the background, this was the harbour both monarchs arrived at.

This medal is a commemorative medal issued to mark the visit of Queen Victoria to Ireland in 1900. The medal was a commercially made souvenir and was not awarded by either the Police of Military. There were a lot of these types of medals sold at the time.

The back of the medals show the words ‘To Commemorate Irish Valour’, I have often seen this medal offered for sale with the implication that it was awarded to Police or Military for an act of bravery which is was not. The medal was given to school children and employees of state bodies and private companies to mark the visit of the Queen. I have also seen it suggested that the ‘To Commemorate Irish Valour’ referred to the bravery shown by Irish regiments in the British army while fighting in the Boer War although personally I think the ‘To Commemorate Irish Valour’ was put on the medal to make it more attractive to Irish people.

Three members of the R.I.C. haveing just received their Coronation medals in Dublin in 1911.

Visit of King George V to Ireland in 1911

This medal was issued to all members of the R.I.C. and D.M.P. who were on duty during the visit of King George V to Ireland in 1911. The medals was also awarded to other such as St John Ambulance members and Kingstown Harbour Police who served during the visit. Members of the Phoenix Park and St. Stephens Green Police were also awarded the medal.

The number of medals issued was 2477 and were awarded to the following forces:
  • R.I.C. officers and men 1022
  • R.I.C. office staff 24
  • D.M.P. officers and men 1314
  • D.M.P. office staff 4
  • Phoenix Park and St. Stephens Green Parks Police 10
  • Kingstown Harbour Police 11
  • St John Ambulance Brigade 92

The back of the medal shows the dates of the visit, the ribbon was dark green with two red stripes. There was no clasp issued with the medal. New ribbon for the medal is widely available. The medal was designed by Sir Edgar Bertram Mackennal who’s initials B. M. appear on the medal.

R.I.C. King George V Coronation Medal

As well as the Coronation Royal Visit medal issued to R.I.C. members some R.I.C. members also received a Police Coronation Medal issued to mark the Coronation.

This medal was very similar in design the Royal visit medal, the reverse of the medal had Royal Irish Constabulary Coronation 1911 on it, similar medals with the police forces own name on it were issued to other police forces around the U.K.,  as with other provincial police forces, the medal was issued to approximately one in every twenty members of the RIC based on an exemplary service record. As far as I know there was no Dublin Metropolitan Police D.M.P. version issued.  572 medals were awarded to the R.I.C.

The quote from Hansard below gives some detail on the issue of the medal.

(Hansard) HC Deb 05 July 1911 vol 27 cc1138-9

The Home Secretary, who is attending a meeting of the Privy Council, has asked me to answer this question for him. The King has been graciously pleased to command that the police medal issued to commemorate their Majesties' Coronation should be granted to a certain number of the members of every police force in the United Kingdom. As a general rule, the medals will be given to men selected for long and meritorious service, in the proportion of one for every twenty members of a force; but in the case of places which His Majesty has paid or is about to pay official visits in connection with the Coronation, medals will be given to all police officers employed on the occasion whose record shows more than ten years of efficient and meritorious service.

RIC Medal of Merit

The medal of merit was awarded for acts of bravery above and beyond the call of duty. The medal was issued engraved with the recipients name rank and service number and the year the act for which the medal was awarded took place. As the event was often reported in the newspapers it is often possible to gain this information by research. The majority of these medals awarded to the R.I.C. were awarded during the Irish War of Independence.

An R.I.C. pin badge, stamped B. & P. on reverse, silver gilt, silver covered in gold plate. These pins were decorative, worn by members and ex-members of the R.I.C. or as sweetheart broaches. They are not official awards for service or bravery.

Dublin Metropolitan Police DMP Cap Badge used from about 1902 to 1910. White metal die-stamped 'Quis Separabit' Who will separate (us) and EVII Royal cypher.