Will there be a coronation medal for King Charles III?

Fans might be wondering if there'll be a coronation medal to mark King Charles' big day and who could receive such a special royal piece

Will King Charles III have a coronation medal? Seen here the King inspects the 200th Sovereign's parade at Royal Military Academy Sandhurst
(Image credit: Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

The prospect of a coronation medal to mark King Charles’ big day is something that might’ve intrigued many fans as this is one tradition that’s very special. 

With everything from King Charles’ coronation emblem to King Charles’ coronation logo already confirmed as the big day drew nearer, speculation had arisen over whether there would also be a coronation medal to mark this huge occasion. Coronation medals are awarded by the monarch when they’re crowned and act as a commemorative souvenir of their special day. This has been an established British tradition for all monarchs since King Edward VI in the 16th century and some will no doubt remember the design created for the late Queen Elizabeth’s coronation. 

But despite the countdown to King Charles’ coronation on May 6 progressing fast, fans have still been patiently waiting to learn if this tradition would be upheld. Here we reveal whether there will definitely be a coronation medal for King Charles III and who could receive one…

King Charles at the Big Jubilee Lunch

(Image credit: Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty)

Will there be a coronation medal for King Charles?

After months of speculation leading up to King Charles’ coronation day it's finally now been confirmed that yes, there will be a commemorative coronation medal issued to mark this national occasion, just as there was for Queen Elizabeth. According to the BBC, these magnificent medals will be received by people in recognition of their contribution to His Majesty’s coronation and they will be made of nickel silver.

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For those wondering what King Charles’ coronation medal might look like, the first glimpses have been shared and this two-sided piece will unsurprisingly have two distinct designs. On one side of the medal will be the royal cypher and on the other will be images of the King and Queen Consort in profile, similar to how King Charles appears on British coins. 

This coronation medal design is a far cry from the first ever to be awarded which marked the accession of King James VI of Scotland as King James I of England in 1603. His coronation medal featured a bust of him wearing the costume of a Roman Emperor. Compared to this, King Charles’ coronation medal is a much more low-key and modern design which is in-keeping with his approach to his reign and to his own coronation.

King Charles arrives for the National Service of Thanksgiving

(Image credit: Photo by Daniel Leal - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Buckingham Palace previously shared that His Majesty’s coronation will “reflect the monarch’s role today and look towards the future” as well as being “rooted in long standing traditions and pageantry”. Now this day and his ethos for the coronation will forever be commemorated in the beautiful coronation medals.  

Who will receive a coronation medal?

Unlike the Coronation Concert where tickets were available for anyone to receive if they entered and were selected in a public ballot, only certain people will be eligible to receive the coronation medal. Those who will be receiving the medal include ambulance workers, police officers, choristers and military personnel who will be actively involved in King Charles’ coronation. 

A coronation medal will also be given to emergency service workers, prison staff and members of the Armed Forces who have served for over five full years. Whilst all living recipients of the George Cross or Victoria Cross will also receive one of these precious coronation medals. 

Members of the Household Division take part in the rehearsal of the tri-service military accompaniment to the Coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla

(Image credit: Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

The BBC has reported that the UK’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport has declared that the medal is a gift from the nation to commemorate the coronation for the people whose hard work and dedication will make the service happen. Seven decades ago to mark the late Queen Elizabeth’s coronation around a staggering 220,000 coronation medals were handed out to individuals. 

However, a more modest 4,000 of these new ones will be issued, with reports previously suggesting King Charles would break with tradition with a more scaled-back coronation in light of the cost-of-living crisis. This is undoubtedly a consideration for the royals as the choice of an existing tiara to be Queen Camilla’s coronation crown for the first time in “recent history” was made in the “interests of sustainability and efficiency”.

Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse
Freelance news writer

Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse is royal news and entertainment writer. She began her freelance journalism career after graduating from Nottingham Trent University with an MA in Magazine Journalism, receiving an NCTJ diploma, and earning a First Class BA (Hons) in Journalism at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute. She has also worked with Good To, BBC Good Food and The Independent.