Rare Second World War medal for pigeon is sold at Banbury auctioneer

Holloway's of Banbury are selling a Dickin Medal and associated paperwork with photos, won by carrier pigeon, Princess, in WWII. NNL-171128-161930009
Holloway's of Banbury are selling a Dickin Medal and associated paperwork with photos, won by carrier pigeon, Princess, in WWII. NNL-171128-161930009
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A rare wartime medal which was awarded to a carrier pigeon for her contribution to the allied effort during the Second World War has sold at auction for £7,200.

The Dickin Medal, and its paperwork, was purchased by a British organisation during an auction at Holloway’s Auctioneers held yesterday, Tuesday.

The medal, which is the equivalent of a Victoria Cross for animals, had been presented to the pigeon, called Princess, who flew for 500 miles between Crete and RAF Alexandria with valuable information.

Only a very few were presented during the war and this medal is unique in having all its associated paperwork.

Auctioneer Russell Beard said although there had been a lot of interest before the auction, the bad weather had kept a lot of people away.

He said: “We were slightly disappointed. This medal is so rare you can’t say what it is worth because you can’t buy another one. We think the weather might have had some impact as there were less people in the room than there would have normally been although people could have bid online if they wanted to.

“It sold for around £7,000 which was at the lower end of the valuation.”

He added he couldn’t reveal who had bought the medal, but it had been sold to a British national organisation.

“It has gone to a good home,” he said. “There have been fewer than 70 of these medals ever given. It is a really rare item and this one had all the provenance.”