The Knight Bachelor's Badge, Neck Badge (1973-)
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The rank of Knight Bachelor is the oldest type of Knight in Britain and dates to at least the 13th century. Knights Bachelor are knighted by the British Sovereign at their discretion outside of any order of chivalry. It is generally conferred in recognition of public service but may be conferred in recognition of various forms of meritorious contributions to British public life. Women and foreigners cannot be named Knights Bachelor.
Knights Bachelor are permitted to use the formal title “Sir” but are not entitled to use any post-nominals.
Although the rank of Knight Bachelor dates to the 13th century, official insignia were not established until 1926. Since this date, a number of different decorations have been used. From 1926-1973, a pinback breast badge was used. In 1973, Queen Elizabeth introduced a neck badge as the principle award, along with a miniature that could be worn on appropriate occasions. The breast badge may still be worn with the neck badge, but both the breast badge and the miniature are private purchase items.
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