Purple Hearts considered for wounded troops

A medal to honour those wounded in battle similar to the US’ Purple Heart is being considered by Gordon Brown.

An aide to the premier said Mr Brown was impressed by the way the US treated its serving soldiers and was hoping to launch a British version of a US armed forces initiative under which those injured or killed in battle are given a Purple Heart.

The prime minister has now asked MP Quentin Davies to draft a proposal into the matter.

An aide to Mr Brown said he felt the military were “a constant feature of American life while it is all too often a forgotten feature of life in Britain”.

Mr Brown is said to have noticed the way events in America highlight the role played by members of the armed forces during his recent visit to the country. This involves parades for troops returning from tours of duty and appearances at popular sporting events such as the Superbowl.

In a letter to Premier League chief Richard Scudamore last week, which was published in the Sunday Telegraph, the prime minister said he was in favour of a special Armed Forces Day to celebrate the sacrifices made by the military for the country.

He mentioned a parade of honour held for troops returning from abroad at Aston Villa’s home ground last season as an “excellent example” of how to respect serving soldiers.