World War I medal unearthed by Virgin Media in Fawdon
22nd March 2017
Virgin Media has launched a search for the family of a World War I hero after it discovered a Victory Medal in Fawdon, Newcastle, while carrying out routine work on its broadband network.
The medal was discovered by representatives from McNicholas, who contract for Virgin Media.
Karen Ingham, Virgin Media Regional Director, said: “We’re excited to discover this important piece of World War I history and are eager reunite the Victory Medal with the war hero’s family.
“If it belonged to a family member, or you have any information that will help us find its rightful home, then please contact us.”
The medal was given out during the Great War and remains in good condition. There is an engraving on the side that reads as follows:
57672 PTE . A . J . GIFFORD W . YORK . R .
After speaking to the Imperial War Museum, McNicholas were advised to contact the National Archive. There is a record for Ansele J Gifford of the West Yorkshire Regiment, but no other information could be ascertained from the Catalogue Database.
The medal shows the winged figure of ‘Victory’ on the front, while the reverse reads ‘The Great War for Civilisation 1914 – 1919’. Virgin Media is keeping the medal safe with the hope of reuniting it with the descendants of the bearer.
The Victory Medal was only issued as part of a set, to all those who were awarded the British War Medal. These medals, along with the 1914-15 Star, were sometimes referred to as Pip, Squeak and Wilfred.
Virgin Media is searching for the family of the war hero to return the medal to its rightful owners. If in two weeks the medal’s owner cannot be found, then it will be given to The Prince of Wales's Own Regiment of Yorkshire, based at York Army Museum, so it can be displayed proudly in their museum.