Metal & Manufacture of
The Victoria Cross
The bronze from which all Victoria Crosses are made is supplied
from the Central Ordnance Depot, Donnington and all the Crosses
made throughout this century have been made from the same source
of metal. This was taken from captured enemy cannon.
When more Crosses are required Hancocks request a supply of metal
and this is then delivered to them by COD Donnington.
In fact, the metal is of Chinese origin and not Russian as if often
stated. The medal is engraved with both the name of the recipient
and the date of the action for which the medal is awarded. Pressure
of events leading to 26 June is apparent because Hacocks only received
the final lists of names of the recipients to be engraved on 19
Unlike any other award for gallantry the Victoria Cross is not
made in a die. It is not struck, as are coins and many other medals,
it is cast. Traditionally it is sand cast in moulds usually containing
four specimens at a time. The medals are removed from the sand moulds
when the metal has cooled, and then the hand finishing process begins.
The obverse and reverse is hand chased even to the minutest detail
and the whole medal has a special bronze finish applied at the end
of the process. This gives even colour to the medal, because the
bronze from which it is cast never has an overall attractive appearance.
The suspender bar from which the cross itself is hung, is cast
at the same time as the medal and receives the same hand finishing.
It has been customary to produce 12 Victoria Crosses at a time.