On February 26th, 2013, the Minister of State for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Verterans, Mark Francois, announced the confirmation of the details for the Arctic Star. From that date applications for the decoration were opened. Debate on creating the medal were started on December 19th, 2012 after an independent medal review by Sir John Holmes and an announcement by the Prime Minister at that date.
The design of the Arctic Star was based on the design of the excisting World War Two Stars. The medal is to be awarded to living veterans and when passed away, their living relatives. Relatives or Veterans have to apply for the decoration themselves. Living veterans and widows will be given priority in the presentation of the award.
Qualifying to the Arctic Star will be any person who in service of any length, served in the Arctic. Primary the decoration is intended to recognise those who served with Arctic Convoys, but eligibility is extended to all those who served North of the Arctic Circle during World War Two. This includes members of all Military services and those of the Merchant Navy.
In the formal criteria the Arctic Star is granted for operational service of any lenght, North of the Arctic Circle, dating within September 3rd, 1939 and May 8th, 1945. Elegible are persons who served with Navy and Merchant Navy, participating in and in support of Convoys to North Russia. Fleet Air Arm Personnel can gualify under conditiond applied to the Royal Air Force. Air Force Crew can apply when landed North of the Arctic Circle of serving in the air over this area. Non aircrew on operational service in the area also can apply. Army personnel serving on the mentioned ships qualify under the rules of Navy of Merchant Navy. Personnel taking part in land operations North of the Arctic Circle also are eligible. Civilians serving with Armed Forces who qualify for any Campaign Star, are eligible when they qualify for any of the criteria in support of military operations. Foreign serving in British or Dominion Forces are elgible, provided the individuals have not yet received a similar decoration form their own Government. The eligibility to the Arctic Star has no effect on the eligibility for World War Two recognition previously awarded and gives no automatic rights to any other award.