Veterans of the Second World War Arctic Convoys will begin receiving medals recognising their heroism and bravery "within weeks", the Government will announce today.
Defence Minister Mark Francois will announce that production of the new Arctic Star and a clasp for veterans of the RAF's Bomber Command will start this week.
The move follows David Cameron's announcement in December that he was accepting the recommendations of a review of military decorations by the former diplomat Sir John Holmes.
A long-running campaign to honour the achievements of the seamen who kept open the vital supply routes to the Soviet Union in what Winston Churchill called "the worst journey in the world" had previously been rejected on grounds of protocol.
Sir John also concluded that Bomber Command veterans had been treated "inconsistently" with their counterparts in Fighter Command.
Up to 250,000 veterans and the families of those who have died could be eligible to receive the new awards from as early as next month.
Priority for the new awards will be given to applications from veterans and widows. Other next of kin will also able to apply and will receive their awards shortly afterwards.
The government's plans to award veterans of the Arctic convoys campaign medals comes after years of campaigning. Servicemen past and present as well as local politicians had been locked in a battle to get those who served on the convoys recognition for their bravery during the second world war.
Living veterans and widows will be the first in line to receive the new medals. Production of the accolades is due to get underway soon.
Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage has welcomed the news that the Arctic Convoy Veterans of WW2 will begin receiving medals in recognition of their heroism and bravery.
“I'm delighted that having finally made the decision to award the medal, the Government have turned the design and criteria around in rapid time.
"The Arctic Convoy veterans are all heroes in the truest sense of the word. After ten years of campaigning my delight to see justice finally being done is tinged with sadness that so many are no longer alive to receive the medals they richly deserved.”
Pensioners angry at plans to move a war memorial in Havant are protesting in the town centre. The local council says the proposal to move the memorial is just one of many being considered for the town's redevelopment.