Sir Differel's Honours & Decorations

Defending Sovereign, Church, and Country from the Forces of Darkness

The tenure of Sir Differel Van Helsing as Director of the Caerleon Order was more active than that of her predecessors, both due to a general increase in incursions and other paranormal events, and because she enacted the policy of actively intervening in other Commonwealth states and elsewhere throughout the world instead of relying on the local militaries and governments. As well, she adopted the practice of personally leading combat and reconnaissance missions, as well as performing investigations on her own.

As a result, she is also the most decorated Director in the history of the Order. This page describes the honours, decorations, and medals she has won to reward her service to Sovereign, Church, and Country, and to all Mankind.

16th Baronetess of Denver
Grade: None
Awarded: 1988   By: United Kingdom
Type: Hereditary   Post-Nominals: Btss

Sir Differel inherited the Baronetcy of Denver from her father, and the Van Helsings inherited it from Dame Beatrice Churchill, the 12th Baronetess of Denver. The Baronetcy was created for the Churchills in 1616 by James I after Sebastian Churchill married Arabella Spencer and obtain as a dowry an estate outside of Denver in Norfolk. Sir Sebastian paid £1100 for the privilege. Pictured is the badge for a Baronet of the United Kingdom. Sir Differel only wears it on formal occasion, being one of the few honours she openly acknowledges.


Order of the Dragon
Grade: Knight Grand Cross with Swords; Grand Master
Awarded: 1988; 1997   By: N/A
Type: Chivalric Order   Post-Nominals: KGSOD; GMOD

Vlad Drakulya had been made a Knight of the Order of the Dragon in 1436. When the Order went dormant in 1723, Vlad remained the last active member, despite being a Vampire. When Sir Abraham Van Helsing defeated him and made him the family slave, Vlad considered inducting his new master or his son Sir George into the Order, but decided against it, and then Sir Miles entombed him in a stone sarcophagus in the family mausoleum. After Sir Differel released him, in gratitude he made her a Knight Grand Cross with Swords, and upon assuming the Directorship when she turned 21, made her Grand Master. Sir Differel has since expanded the membership, but has been very choosy about who to invite. Pictured from left to right are the arms of the Order, the pin worn by all members, the collar worn on the feast day of 30 April, and the patch that can be added to clothing or used as decoration or part of a member's personal arms.

Brigadier, British Army
Grade: None
Awarded: 1997   By: United Kingdom
Type: Honourary Military Rank   Post-Nominals: None

Though the Caerleon Order occasionally had to work with Her Majesty's Armed Forces to put down a paranormal threat, at best the Director was given an advisory role as liaison to the Chief of the Imperial General Staff. During World War II, however, His Majesty's Government came to the conclusion that it would be more efficient to grant the Director an honourary army rank so that he could deal with the Armed Forces on a more or less equal footing. After much deliberation, the rank of brigadier was chosen, as being high enough to command respect, but not so high that he could exercise command over more experienced leaders. Sir Miles Van Helsing only had to act in this capacity twice, and Sir Henry not at all, but Sir Differel has taken advantage of her rank to augment the Order's paramilitary force so that it could act independently, with her as its commander. With the increase in paranormal events, especially incursions, since she took over, she has used her rank much more often than her grandfather, but truth be told, she enjoys those times more than her routine Directorial duties. Pictured is the rank insignia for a brigadier of the army.

The Hero of Britain
Grade: None
Awarded: 1998   By: United Kingdom
Type: Royal Proclamation   Post-Nominals: None

In 1997, the Fomorian wizard-king Grendel invaded Great Britain. He devastated Her Majesty's Armed Forces and came close to taking over the country, but at the Battle of Denver in Norfolk on 17 February 1998, Sir Differel defeated his forces and Vlad Drakulya destroyed him. Sir Differel was declared the Hero of Britain by Her Majesty and granted numerous additional honours. However, she blames herself for not being able to anticipate or stop the invasion sooner, and she generally refuses to acknowledge this or the other honours she received as a result. Pictured are Royal Coat of Arms for HM Government.

George Cross
Grade: None
Awarded: 1998   By: United Kingdom
Type: Civil Decoration   Post-Nominals: GC

Pictured is the highest decoration a civilian can receive in the UK. Sir Differel was awarded it as part of her honours after being declared The Hero of Britain. She never wears it, and keeps it in a drawer of her rolltop desk in her boudoir.


Most Noble Order of the Garter
Grade: None
Awarded: 1998   By: United Kingdom
Type: Chivalric Order   Post-Nominals: LG

As part of her honours after being declared The Hero of Britain, Sir Differel was made a Lady Companion of the Order of the Garter, the highest order of knighthood in the UK. Pictured from left to right are the Order badge, collar, garter, mantle and hat, patch, and star. Sir Differel tries to ignore this honour as much as possible, but there are times when she must wear the vestments and accoutrements. On Garter Day she is obliged to wear the mantle and hat, collar, and garter, and join the procession to St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle for the annual service; she is expected to wear the collar on collar days when out in public; and she must wear the star and a blue riband with the badge attached for the few royal formal events she attends.


Life Peerage
Grade: None
Awarded: 1998   By: United Kingdom
Type: Non Hereditary   Post-Nominals: None

Another part of her honours after being declared The Hero of Britain was a Life Peerage. Since the Life Peerages Act of 1958, the granting of new Hereditary Peerages has fallen off, with only six having been created since 1965. Instead, non-hereditary Life Peerages—all baronies—are granted, either to recognize significant achievement or for political purposes. Such persons are allowed to sit in the House of Lords of Parliament if they so choose, with political grantees expected to do so. Pictured are the coronet of the baron, which can be added to a heraldic achievement; the parliamentary robes worn when a Life Peer sits in Parliament; the bonnet worn on formal occasions, and the coronation robe, worn for the coronation of a new Sovereign.

Grant of Arms
Grade: Full Heraldic Achievement
Awarded: 1998   By: United Kingdom
Type: Armorial Bearings   Post-Nominals: None

Still another part of her honours after being declared The Hero of Britain was a grant of arms by the College of Arms by warrant from the Earl Marshal on the advice and consent of Her Majesty. Unlike her other honours associated with her Hero status, this one she gladly accepted. Pictured is the coat of arms from the full heraldic achievement.

Grendel Invasion Medal
Grade: None
Awarded: 1998   By: United Kingdom
Type: Campaign Medal   Post-Nominals: GIM

Pictured is the Grendel Invasion campaign medal awarded to all military personal who participated in defending Great Britain from the invasion the Fomorian wizard-king Grendel. Campaign medals are given to all personnel who serve during a particular campaign or in a specific geographic location. Though similar to Service medals, they are more prestigious because they imply service during combat situations. Though Sir Differel only holds an honourary rank, since she was instrumental in Grendel's eventual defeat HM Government decided it would be stingy not to award her the medal simply for that reason. Like the George Cross, however, Sir Differel never wears it and stores it in the same drawer of her rolltop desk.

Member, House of Lords
Grade: None
Awarded: 1999   By: United Kingdom
Type: Non Hereditary   Post-Nominals: None

As a Life Peer, Sir Differel has the right to sit in the House of Lords. At one time, Hereditary Peers were allowed to sit as well, but after the House of Lords Act in 1999 only 92 were allowed to do so, the rest being Life Peers. Sir Differel was made a so-called "People's Peer"; this has no social, class, or political distinction, except that she was elevated on merit instead of to help pad the membership of a particular party. In her case, it was so that she could advise Parliament on paranormal affairs. Being non-partisan, she sits as a "crossbencher", meaning she sits in the crossbenches between the government and opposition seats. Though a staunch supporter of the Conservative Party, her choice of where to sit emphasizes that at least in Parliament she remains politically neutral. Pictured is the Crowned Portcullis, the principle emblem of the House.

Order of Canada
Grade: Officer
Awarded: 1999   By: Canada
Type: National Order   Post-Nominals: OC

Though the Grendel Invasion directly endangered only Great Britain, the Commonwealth of Nations would have been threatened had the wizard-king succeeded in seizing the Government. Nearly every Commonwealth member wanted to award Sir Differel with an order or decoration, but when she threatened to resign, Her Majesty struck a compromise. Sir Differel agreed to accept honours from the two senior-most members, Canada and Australia. Canada inducted her into the Order of Canada with the grade of Officer, its second highest honour after the British Order of Merit. As with her other decorations, however, she never wears it and simply stores it in a drawer of her rolltop desk. Pictured is the badge and neck ribbon of the order.

Order of Australia
Grade: Companion
Awarded: 1999   By: Commonwealth of Australia
Type: National Order   Post-Nominals: AC

As the second senior-most Commonwealth member in the compromise, Australia awarded Sir Differel the Order of Australia with the grade of Companion, its highest honour. Though technically available only to Australians, the government wanted to give her an award that would match the George Cross without overshadowing it. As such, they also made her an honourary Australian citizen. As with her other decorations, she never wears it and simply stores it in a drawer of her rolltop desk. Pictured is the badge and neck ribbon of the order.

Presidential Medal of Freedom
Grade: Distinction
Awarded: 1999   By: United States of America
Type: Medal   Post-Nominals: None

As with the Commonwealth, a Fomorian takeover of Great Britain would have also threatened the United States. At the insistence of the Prime Minister and Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council, Sir Differel agreed to accept one last honour for the Grendel Invasion, the Presidential Medal of Freedom with Distinction. She is, however, somewhat dubious of the honour, believing that President Bill Clinton awarded her the medal to deflect attention away from his impeachment. As with her other decorations, she never wears it and simply stores it in a drawer of her rolltop desk. Pictured is the medal with its neck ribbon.

Viscountess Dunwich
Grade: None
Awarded: 2001   By: United Kingdom
Type: by Marriage   Post-Nominals: None

Sir Differel married the Rt. Hon. Victor Edward Plunkett, 26th Viscount Dunwich, in January 2001, and thereby became Viscountess Dunwich. Pictured is the coronet of the viscount, which can be added to a heraldic achievement.

Meritorious Service Medal
Grade: None
Awarded: 2003   By: NATO
Type: Military Decoration   Post-Nominals: None

In 2003, Sir Differel and her husband Lord Dunwich were attending a NATO meeting in Brussels where she briefed the North Atlantic Council on paranormal affairs, when she discovered a Fomorian was attempting to infect the Secretary General and the Council with embryos in a bid to take control of of the organization. She killed the Fomorian at the risk of her own life. As a reward, the NATO Parliamentary Assembly voted to create the Meritorious Service Medal and the Secretary General made her the first recipient. This was the first honour she received that she accepted without reservation. She seldom wears it, but she has it mounted in a displayed in her office. Pictured is the medal.


Order of Leopold
Grade: Grand Officer
Awarded: 2003   By: Kingdom of Belgium
Type: Chivalric Order   Post-Nominals: None

In the aftermath of the attempted Fomorian takeover of NATO, King Albert II of Belgium decided that the NATO medal was an insufficient reward for the heroism she showed in stopping it, so he inducted her into the Order of Leopold with the grade of Grand Officer, Belgium's highest honour. She has the badge mounted with other medals in her office, while the collar and the star are on display in her boudoir. Pictured is the order badge and neck ribbon, star, collar, and robe.

Chief of Staff Medal of Appreciation
Grade: None
Awarded: 2005   By: State of Israel
Type: Military Decoration
Post-Nominals: None

In 2005, Sir Differel was visiting the Shrine of the Book in Israel, when Neo-Nazis stole one of the stored scrolls with the help of extremist messianic Zionists and the Daughters of Iblis, an extremist Islamic sect. She discovered that the scroll contained a ritual for raising an apocalyptic spirit and learned that the three groups planned to enact it to perform the ultimate Shoah, the complete destruction of the State of Israel, but each for their own ends. Sir Differel managed to stop them with the help of a Nazirite and a Fedayeen, and she was rewarded with the Chief of Staff Medal of Appreciation for service that preserves the security of Israel. She has it on display in her boudoir. Pictured is the medal itself.

Righteous among the Nations
Grade: None
Awarded: 2005   By: State of Israel
Type: Civil Declaration
Post-Nominals: None

In addition to the Chief of Staff Medal of Appreciation, Sir Differel was also declared "Righteous among the Nations". Technically that was awarded only to people who had saved Jews from the Holocaust, but the Knesset voted to make an exception, based on the facts that the main instigators were neo-Nazis hoping to revive the Holocaust, and that the whole State of Israel had been the target. This also made her an honourary citizen of Israel. She has the Righteous medal mounted with other medals in her office. Pictured is the medal itself.

Distinguished Service Medal
Grade: None
Awarded: 2007   By: United States of America
Type: Military Decoration   Post-Nominals: DSM

In 2007 Sir Differel was in southern British Columbia, Canada, investigating reports of rogue werewolf activity, when her reconnaissance force strayed over the border into Montana. There she found a large pack of werewolves attacking a military base. She ordered her detachment to reinforce the beleaguered Americans, and discovered that the base housed thirty MGM-118A Peacekeeper "MX" intercontinental ballistic missiles, each with ten 300-kiloton MK-21 re-entry vehicles, housed in railway garrison cars ready to be deployed throughout the States in case of nuclear war. She and the commander of the base defenders, Lt. Gen. Morgan Leia Ross, realized the werewolves wanted to seize the missiles. They managed to prevent a werewolf mole from acquiring the launch codes and they killed or drove off the rest of the pack. In gratitude for her assistance, the Pentagon wanted to award Sir Differel the Legion of Merit, but Ross secured permission from President Ronald Reagan to award her the Distinguished Service Medal, a superior decoration. She has this medal mounted with others in her office. Pictured is the medal itself.

Heirloom Basket-hilted Broadsword
Grade: None
Awarded: 2008   By: Scotland
Type: Token of Esteem   Post-Nominals: None

In 2008, a Zombie incursion occurred on Barra Island in the Outer Hebrides northwest of Scotland. In response Sir Differel took the newly acquired HMA Britannic with a force of Caerleon Order troops and cleansed the island before the incursion could spread to the mainland. As a reward, the Scottish Parliament voted to present her with an heirloom basket-hilted broadsword, presented by the Presiding Officer, as a token of their esteem and gratitude. It has become one of her most prized possessions. Pictured is several views of the sword.

Ricemarch Psalter
Grade: None
Awarded: 2009   By: Wales
Type: Token of Esteem   Post-Nominals: None

In 2009, Sir Differel received a report of a Gargoyle incursion into the Eryri Mountains of Wales. She responded with HMA Britannic and managed to destroy the nest. As a reward, the National Assembly for Wales voted to present her with the Ricemarch Psalter, an 11th century illuminated psalter created by Ithael of Llanbadarn Fawr. It was presented by the Presiding Officer, as a token of their esteem and gratitude. She keeps it on display in the library of her manor. Pictured is a view of two pages.

Order of the Golden Heart of Kenya
Grade: Chief
Awarded: 2009   By: Republic of Kenya
Type: National Order   Post-Nominals: CGH

Also in 2009, Sir Differel learned of a Callicantzari incursion in Kenya. She took HMA Britannic on it's first combat mission outside of the British Isles and was able to destroy the primitive Vampires before they could spread beyond the valley where they first appeared. In gratitude, the President of Kenya awarded her the Order of the Golden Heart of Kenya with the grade of Chief. She has this medal mounted with others in her office. Pictured is the chest badge of the order.

Ashoka Chakra Award
Grade: None
Awarded: 2010   By: Republic of India
Type: Military Decoration   Post-Nominals: ACI

In 2010, Sir Differel took HMA Britannic to India to deal with a Rakshasa incursion. This event proved especially difficult and almost cost her her life. In gratitude, the President of India awarded the Ashoka Chakra Award, India's highest peace time honour. She has this medal mounted with others in her office. Pictured is the medal itself.

Order of National Hero
Grade: None
Awarded: 2010   By: Jamaica
Type: National Order   Post-Nominals: ONH

Also in 2010, Sir Differel took HMA Britannic to Jamaica to deal with a Deep One incursion. This mission tested the airship's combat capability as it fought off Byakhee, Hunting Horrors, and a Star-Spawn. Sir Differel was almost sacrificed by the Mambo Asogwe who sought to steal her body and lifeforce, while Vlad Drakulya was forced to deal with Nyarlathotep in the guise of Baron Kriminel. After Vlad drove off the Crawling Chaos, she defeated the high priestess, and she convinced the Deep Ones to return to their underwater city, the Governor-General, with the consent of the Prime Minister, awarded her the Order of National Hero, the highest of Jamaica's five Orders of the Societies of Honour. Technically, it was only bestowed on Jamaican citizens, so the Parliament of Jamaica voted her an honourary citizenship. In addition to the star worn around the neck, the order also provides a riband, and allows the recipient to be styled "the Right Excellent" and to place "National Hero of Jamaica" after her name. She has the star on display in her boudoir. Pictured is the star with the neck ribbon.


Pontifical Equestrian Order of St. Sylvester Pope and Martyr
Grade: Dame Commander with Star
Awarded: 2011   By: State of the City of the Vatican
Type: Chivalric Order   Post-Nominals: DC*SS

In 2011, Sir Differel negotiated with the Archbishop of Westminster to form an alliance with the Vatican's Holy Order of St. Antony Demons-Bane when her manor was invaded by Arawn of Annwn and a pack of Cwn Annwn to take an artifact known as the Agoriad at Annwn, the Key to Hell. With the help of Team Girl and taking advantage of the fact that the Cwn Annwn would not harm a pregnant Eile, she was able to defeat the invasion and keep the relic out of Arawn's hands. In gratitude for saving the Archbishop, the Pope awarded her with the Pontifical Equestrian Order of St. Sylvester Pope and Martyr with the grade of Dame Commander with Star. She has the badge mounted with other medals in her office, while the star is on display in her boudoir. Pictured is the order star, badge and neck ribbon, uniform, and sword.

Lady of Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council
Grade: None
Awarded: 2011   By: United Kingdom
Type: Appointment   Post-Nominals: PC

Also in 2011, Sir Differel revealed that her godfather and the Privy Councilor who oversaw the operations of the Caerleon Order, Sir Edward Wallace Penbryn, had been replaced by the Amadán Mór, a powerful Daoine Sídh. With him driven away, Her Majesty appointed her to fill his place on the Council as its advisor on paranormal affairs. Though at first she tried to decline, believing there should be someone else providing oversight, she was eventually convinced to accept. Pictured is the Royal Arms of the Privy Council.

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