Author Topic: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?  (Read 424 times)

Offline jess5athome

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Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« on: Friday 07 December 18 12:37 GMT (UK) »
Hi, I have been trying to find out about my Grandfathers Military service in the second world war.

Gerhadus Hendrikus Kempen was born in the Netherlands but came to England with his parents in 1912 at the age of 8 years, he answered the Netherlands call to arms during the war and joined the Royal Netherlands Navy.
It seems from the information I have that he served on the MV Gadila, this was a converted oil tanker and was turned into a merchant aircraft carrier (MAC Ship) and he was based at the Royal Naval Air Station Maydown, Londonderry, Northern Ireland.

The proof is there that he served and I am wondering if he would have been awarded a medal such as the Defence and War Medal, no one in the family believes he was awarded one

My question is, would he have been awarded them, or would he possibly have been awarded a Netherlands medal if indeed one existed, I would like to purchase copies if he was eligible.

Many thanks in anticipation of your kind replies and as always my very best regards.

Frank.
Ramsey Ridsdale Ridgway Kempen Knight Harrison Denby Sisson Graney Spilsbury Wain Hebden Abbott Skinn ........ Yorkshire (Doncaster Goole Snaith Thorne area)Lincolnshire Nottinghamshire The Netherlands

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Offline MaxD

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Re: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« Reply #1 on: Friday 07 December 18 12:55 GMT (UK) »
Can't find a source to cite but my feeling is UK service medals are for members of the UK services. 

Perhaps our readers in the Netherlands would know about Dutch war service medals, likely he would have had one/more of these:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orders,_decorations,_and_medals_of_the_Netherlands

MaxD
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Offline jess5athome

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Re: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« Reply #2 on: Friday 07 December 18 13:08 GMT (UK) »
Hi MaxD  :) many thanks, I shall do more searching online and possibly post on the "Other Countries" board, like you I found very little, many thanks again.

Frank.
Ramsey Ridsdale Ridgway Kempen Knight Harrison Denby Sisson Graney Spilsbury Wain Hebden Abbott Skinn ........ Yorkshire (Doncaster Goole Snaith Thorne area)Lincolnshire Nottinghamshire The Netherlands

Offline seaweed

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Re: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« Reply #3 on: Friday 07 December 18 13:12 GMT (UK) »
 Poster HMac should give you a definitive answer.
If not the man to talk to is Henk Meurs
http://members.ziggo.nl/hmeurs/
His website is in Dutch, there is an email address on the site. Henks English is A1.
Dim ateb yn well nag ateb anghywir. Nid oes dim yn ddall fel rhai nad ydynt yn dymuno gweld

Offline jess5athome

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Re: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« Reply #4 on: Friday 07 December 18 13:31 GMT (UK) »
Hi seaweed  :) many, many thanks for that, I shall have a look at the link when at home this afternoon.

Frank.
Ramsey Ridsdale Ridgway Kempen Knight Harrison Denby Sisson Graney Spilsbury Wain Hebden Abbott Skinn ........ Yorkshire (Doncaster Goole Snaith Thorne area)Lincolnshire Nottinghamshire The Netherlands

Offline clayton bradley

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Re: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« Reply #5 on: Friday 07 December 18 15:20 GMT (UK) »
My dad served in the Prinses Irene Brigade in WWII and his medals are Dutch, so I think it would be the same for seamen. However, my uncle flew with the British, so you've got me wondering about him. cb
Broadley (Lancs all dates and Halifax bef 1654)

Offline MaxD

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Re: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« Reply #6 on: Friday 07 December 18 15:55 GMT (UK) »
If the uncle who flew was a member of the UK forces then my feeling is that he would, regardless of nationality, qualify for British service medals.


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Offline seaweed

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Re: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« Reply #7 on: Friday 07 December 18 17:38 GMT (UK) »
MV GADILA was built in 1934 and registered in The Hague, later in 1941/42 her registry was transferred to Willemstad. She operated under the Netherlands Mercantile Marine flag.
As far as I am aware, as your Grandad would be considered a Netherlands sailor, he would not have been entitled to British medals unless he became a British Subject. I believe he would been entitled to Dutch medals. Henk should clarify the situation.
From past experience I know British Seamen who served on Dutch or Norwegian vessels did have a British medal entitlement. In certain circumstance's they also received medals from the Dutch and/or Norwegian governments.
Your Grandad did his bit. GADILA sailed in several HX convoys (Atlantic)
http://www.convoyweb.org.uk/
Dim ateb yn well nag ateb anghywir. Nid oes dim yn ddall fel rhai nad ydynt yn dymuno gweld

Offline HMac

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Re: Medals of Dutch sailors who lived in England, were they awarded them?
« Reply #8 on: Friday 07 December 18 18:58 GMT (UK) »
I will defer to Henk on this too on the basis that I cannot give you a primary source.

My own feeling is that if he was in the Dutch RN, he would not be entitled to British campaign medals as his awards would be military decorations awarded by his own nation.

If, however, he was serving in the British Merchant Navy then he would be entitled.
Regards
Hugh
Merchant Navy Research
ss CITY OF CAIRO