The Returned and Services League (RSL) was founded in 1916 by returning Australian soldiers from World War I with the aim of continuing to provide the camaraderie, concern, and mateship shown amongst diggers during the conflict.
Since its foundation, the RSL has grown to 1,200 sub-branches Australia wide with more than 170,000 members and over 200,000 affiliate members, making it the largest ex-service organisation in the country. The RSL’s objective is to ensure that adequate care, compensation and commemoration is provided to returning servicemen and women, as well as those currently serving in the Australian Defence Force.
To mark the 100th anniversary of the RSL in 2016, The Perth Mint is proud to issue commemorative gold and silver proof coins portraying the RSL badge.
The RSL badge features the Crown signifying allegiance to Queen and country with the national flowers of Australia, Wales, England, Scotland, and Ireland – the wattle, the leek, the rose, the thistle, and the shamrock. In the centre of the badge is a sailor, a soldier, an airman, and a service woman, who are marching with their arms linked, symbolising friendship and that all services, and ranks, are united in comradeship. The RSL badge is worn in honour only by those who have rendered service in the armed forces of the Crown or its allies.
The colours used in the badge design represent different things. The red represents the blood tie of war that exists between comrades; the white stands for the purity of motive in joining the League – to render services without thought of personal gain or ambition; and the blue indicates willingness to render that service to a comrade anywhere under the blue sky wherever he or she may be.
100th Anniversary Coins
Issued as Australian legal tender, no more than 1,000 RSL Centenary coins made from 1/4oz of 99.99% pure gold, and 5,000 RSL Centenary coloured coins made from 1oz of 99.9% pure silver will be released by The Perth Mint. In addition to the RSL badge, both coins include the inscriptions RSL CENTENARY LEST WE FORGET and ‘1916 2016’.
The emblem and logo of the Returned & Services League of Australia Limited (RSL) are owned by the RSL and may only be used with the written consent of the RSL.