Researching a soldier

The "theatre of war" codes used on medal index cards

The medal index cards and medal rolls refer to codes that tell in which theatre of war the soldier first served after leaving his native shore.

For disembarkations up to 31 December 1915

These codes generally apply to men who won the 1914 or 1914-15 Star, but not those who only won the British War Medal/Victory Medal pair. [My thanks to Jonathan Saunders for helping complete this list].

  • 1 Western Europe
  • 2 Balkan Theatre
    a) Greek Macedonia, Serbia and Bulgaria
    b ) Gallipoli and Aegean Islands
  • 3 Egyptian Theatre
  • 4 African Theatre
    a) British East Africa, German East Africa, Rhodesia, Nyasaland and Uganda
    b) German South West Africa
    c) Kamerun (Cameroon)
    d) Togoland
    e) Caprivi Zipfel Rhodesia
  • 5 Asiatic Theatre
    a) Mesopotamia and Bushire
    b ) South West Arabia
    c) Aden
    d) Muscat (Musquat)
    e) Seistan
    f) Tochi Valley
    g) Hafiz
    h) Katlang, Rastam and Swati
    i) Landekai Ridge
    j) Perim
    k) Kalat
    l) Katchin Hills
    m) Tsing-Tau (note: this has been observed as 5h on medal index cards for some men of the 2nd South Wales Borderers)
  • 6 Australasian Theatre
    a) German New Guinea including
    b) Nauru
    c) German Samoa

For disembarkations from 1 January 1916

  • 1A France and Belgium
  • 1B Italy
  • 2A Greek Macedonia, Serbia, Bulgaria or European Turkey
  • 2B Gallipoli
  • 3 Russia (up to 1/2 July 1920)
  • 4A Egypt (up to 18/19 March 1916)
  • 4B Egypt (from 18/19 March 1916)
  • 5A East Africa, Nyasaland and Northern Rhodesia
  • 5B South West Africa
  • 5C Cameroon
  • 5D Nigeria
  • 5E Togoland
  • 6A Hejaz
  • 6B Mesopotamia
  • 6C Persia
  • 6D Trans-Caspia
  • 6E South West Arabia
  • 6F Aden
  • 6G Frontier regions of India
  • 6H Tsing-tau
  • 7A New Britain
  • 7B New Ireland
  • 7C Kaiser Wilhelmland
  • 7D Admiralty Islands
  • 7E Nauru
  • 7F German Samoa