The Order of the Companions of Honour
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The Order of the Companions of Honour was established by King George V in 1917 and has been amended in 1943, 1970, and 1975. The Order is conferred upon British citizens and other citizens of the Commonwealth in recognition of important contributions to life in Great Britain, including those made to the arts, science, medicine, and government. Foreigners may also be admitted to the Order, but only as Honorary Companions and are not counted towards statutory membership limits. All Companions are entitled to use the post-nominal letters CH.
The Order was originally composed of 50 members, but membership was expanded to 65 in 1943. At this time, a series of membership limits were established as follows: United Kingdom – 45 Companions; Australia – 7 Companions; New Zealand – 2 Companions; South Africa – 2 Companions; India, Burma, and other colonies – 9 Companions. In 1970, another amendment was passed which altered the membership limits: United Kingdom – 47 Companions; Australia – 7 Companions; New Zealand – 2 Companions; other Commonwealth nations – 9 Companions. Since 1975, the following limits have been in place: United Kingdom – 47 Companions; Australia – 7 Companions; New Zealand – 4 Companions; other Commonwealth nations – 7 Companions.
The motto of the Order is “IN ACTION FAITHFUL AND IN HONOUR CLEAR.”
The Medal is worn by men around the neck and by women on a bow.
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