Presentation of medals: how it works

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In the background, Queen Lovisa Ulrika surveys the medal recipients. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/the Royal Court

Yesterday, medals were presented at the Royal Palace of Stockholm. But how are the medal recipients chosen, and what happens at the presentation ceremony?
The Office of the Marshal of the Realm deals with the presentation of medals. The Principal Secretary to the Marshal of the Realm, Johan Fischerström, is responsible for the process.

Johan Fischerström. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/the Royal Court

Johan, how do you choose the medal recipients?
Lots of different suggestions are received, and we at the Office of the Marshal of the Realm go through these. Some of the suggestions come from the public, while others are our own suggestions. We also send out enquiries to people such as county governors to ensure a regional spread of medal recipients. The full list is then prepared and given to the Marshal of the Realm, who convenes a committee that represents different sections of society. The committee then decides which names to forward to The King, who then decides who will receive medals.
 
So how do I nominate someone to receive a medal?
You can write to us at the Office of the Marshal of the Realm, including a brief description of the person you are nominating and what he or she has done to deserve a medal.
 
What happens in terms of the actual medal presentation?
First, the medal recipients receive a letter from the Marshal of the Realm explaining that they have been awarded a medal by The King. They are also given the opportunity to invite a guest to the award ceremony. On the actual day they are met by a representative from the Office of Ceremonies, who explains the practical arrangements. The room used for the ceremony varies. Sometimes it takes place in the Pillared Hall, and sometimes in Queen Lovisa Ulrika's Dining Hall. In the summer, there have been occasions when medals have been awarded at Drottningholm Palace.

Master of Ceremonies Jan Warren welcomes the medal recipients and their guests. Photo: Henrik Garlöv/the Royal Court

In the room where the medals are presented there are two tables: one with all the medals, and one with the medal letters. At the designated time, the doors are opened and The King and The Queen come in. Once The King and Queen have arrived, The King gives a signal to the Principal Secretary, who starts to read out the names of the recipients and the reasons for awarding the medals. The recipients then come up to receive their medal from The King and their medal letter from The Queen. 
 
Once the medals have been awarded, The King gives a short congratulatory speech. One of the medal recipients then gives a speech of thanks on behalf of all the recipients. A reception is then held for the medal recipients and their guests in an adjoining room. Those present have the opportunity to speak with The King and Queen and with each other. After around 30 minutes, the Master of Ceremonies knocks on the floor with his stick to signify the end of the reception. The King and Queen then withdraw, and the guests go home.
 
Read more about the various medals hereopens in new window.
Here you can find out who received medalsopens in new window.