It bears the name of the current British monarch, Queen Elizabeth II. The trial crosses, and the first few to be issued, were made by Gladman & Norman, families receive a large version of the cross, and a pin-on miniature, together with a Memorial Scroll signed by The Queen which bears the name of the person who died. The award was instituted by Queen Elizabeth II on 1 July 2009, previously, for those who died in the First World War relatives were presented with a memorial scroll and bronze plaque, and for Second World War and Korean War deaths, relatives received a scroll. The idea for a new award was first approved on 10 June 2008, the formal Royal Warrant under the Royal Sign Manual establishing the Elizabeth Cross, dated 1 July 2009, was gazetted on 31 July 2009. Among other things, the Royal Warrant states that relatives of members of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary will also be eligible to receive the award, the first crosses were issued by the Ministry of Defence Medal Office at Imjin Barracks, Innsworth on 1 August 2009. Next of kin have the choice of a presentation by the local Lord Lieutenant or a senior officer. Only the recognised next of kin receive the cross and miniature, awards for those killed since 2000 are processed automatically by the Ministry of Defence, relatives of those killed earlier have to contact the MoD themselves. Relatives of those killed in Korea will already have received a scroll, the first public presentation of an Elizabeth Cross was on 18 August 2009 in a ceremony at Catterick Garrison. It was awarded to Karen Upton, the widow of Warrant Officer Sean Upton who was killed while on service in Helmand Province. It was presented by the Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire, the Lord Crathorne, the first presentations of the Elizabeth Cross to be made personally by Queen Elizabeth II took place on 12 September 2009. The precise eligibility requirements issued by the Ministry of Defence are, Medal earning operations are those in which deployed personnel received a Campaign Medal, General Service Medal or Operational Service Medal which demonstrated the risk and rigour involved. Operations where a UN, NATO or other body or other nations campaign medal was accepted for wear. Those who died on a non-medal earning operational task where death has been caused by the inherent high risk of the task and those who died a subsequent and premature death as a result of an injury or illness attributed to the circumstances outlined above. The service must have been undertaken on or after 1 January 1948 in general, in accordance with the Royal Warrant establishing the Elizabeth Cross, it is awarded upon recommendation made to the Queen by the Secretary of State for Defence. As directed by the Royal Warrant, the names of all those who are commemorated with the award of the Elizabeth Cross are recorded in a Registry kept by the Ministry of Defence. Also in accordance with the Royal Warrant that established the Elizabeth Cross, since the Second World War New Zealand has similarly issued a cross to the relatives of those killed in action and/or on duty. The New Zealand Memorial Cross was recently awarded to the family of the late Lt. Tim ODonnell DSD as well as other families who had served in Afghanistan. Victoria Cross George Cross Memorial Cross Purple Heart
Image: The Elizabeth Cross MOD 45150375
The medal, and a miniature version, are presented in a black leather-style presentation box with the Royal Cypher on the lid and the Royal Coat of Arms on the inner silk lining.