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10th Jul 2024

Antiques Roadshow guest refuses to give up war medals after being told how much they’re worth

Harry Warner

Antiques Roadshow

He was adamant the medals were not for sale

An Antiques Roadshow guest was adamant in his refusal to sell a collection of rare war medals despite their incredible valuation.

In a recent episode of the popular afternoon TV show where guests are often shocked to discover the real value of their possession, a guest discovered the history and worth of his prized collection of medals.

Expert Mark Smith noted the medals as an “incredible collection” as the guest explained that the medals were left behind by his late father.

Smith went on to explain the intriguing history of the medals, explaining that one of them hailed from the Battle of Waterloo and in fact represents the first ever war medals to be distributed.

Antiques Roadshow

The expert said: “Before that, we gave out things like coins, they didn’t have your name on, you couldn’t wear them, you put them in your pocket.

“But at the end of the Battle of Waterloo, this medal was instituted to be given to every soldier, and instead of it being made in different metals for different ranks, so a gold one for the Generals, on this particular occasion, Lord Wellington said they should all be exactly the same because they all did exactly the same job.”

Price then went on to examine the other medals, highlighting one known as the Military General Service Medal, consisting of a silver medal adorned with stripes of metal for each battle the person was involved in.

The medal was invented by Queen Victoria in 1847, although the person could receive the medal only if they were still alive.

The antiques expert continued onto a third unique medal from the King’s German Legion, who fought alongside the British at the Battle of Waterloo.

The expert described the examples as “quite spectacular.”

He said: “You don’t see Waterloo medals like that unless you go to a regimental Museum.”

Then came crunch time for the guest and his collection of medals as he said “I haven’t got a clue,” when asked about what he thought the historical artifacts were worth.

Before giving the true value Price replied that he could offer £25 to which the guest laughed describing the medals as “scrap weight.”

Things then got serious as the expert explained that the medals are likely worth £12,000 to which the guest replied without hesitation “never.”

Price laughed as the guest followed up saying, “I wouldn’t part with them, Mark. My grandson will have them.”

At least the owner can sleep soundly knowing the real value of his medals.