Paddy (Pigeon number NPS.43.9451)[1] was an Irish carrier pigeon awarded the Dickin Medal after being the fastest pigeon to arrive back in England with news of the success of the D-Day invasion, out of hundreds dispatched. He flew 230 miles across the English Channel in four hours and fifty minutes,[2] the fastest recorded crossing, and was awarded the medal on 1 September 1944, just under three months after the crossing.[3] Paddy was trained by Andrew Hughes of Carnlough and is the only animal in Ireland to be awarded this medal.[4] The medal citation reads,

For the best recorded time with a message from the Normandy Operations, while serving with the RAF in June, 1944.

His medal was sold at auction for almost £7,000 in September 1999.[5]


  1. ^ PDSA website Archived 2008-09-22 at the Wayback Machine, Dickin Medal awardees, retrieved 2006-02-26
  2. ^ Times Online, "Top 50 greatest sporting animals", retrieved 2008-04-26
  3. ^ Observer magazine Dickin medal awardees, retrieved 2006-02-26
  4. ^ BBC Your Place and Mine, "Paddy Power", retrieved 2008-04-26
  5. ^ BBC News website, "Northern Ireland Fancier flies away with pigeon medal", retrieved 2006-02-26