First Military Medals awarded to the FANY

On the night of 18th May 1918, members of the St Omer Convoy were called out to evacuate patients after a bombing raid had hit a local ammunition dump.  During the evacuation there was a second wave of bombing but the FANYs and VADs who formed the Convoy, refused to take cover and continued transporting patients.

For their bravery in evacuating wounded soldiers under fire the St Omer Convoy was awarded 16 Military Medals and 3 Croix de Guerre. It is rumoured that all the decoration recommendations were questioned, as there were too many for a small unit.  However each decoration was strongly evidenced and they were all awarded.

In July 1918 the FANYs were presented, in the field, with their British decorations by General Sir Herbert Plumer GOC 2nd Army.  Their French decorations were presented by General Marquis de Laguiche at a ceremony in St Omer.

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Codebreaking Sisters

FANY and SOE veteran Jean Argles, and her sister Patricia, have written a book about their service during the Second World War. Drawing on her diaries and letters of the time, Jean details her role as a Code and Cipher Officer, working for Leo Marks, and her postings in Egypt and Italy.

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