Medals issued on behalf of the Queen to honour the dedication and service of public sector workers as she marks 60 years on the throne are being sold online.

An Argus investigation has revealed that Sussex public sector workers are selling their medals on internet auction site eBay within weeks of receiving them.

One man, who is based in Crawley, is selling his medal with a minimum asking price of £120 – but people did not have to bid on it and could buy it straight away for £175.

It is described as a “genuine Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal,” adding: “1952-2012. Brand new in box.”

At the time of going to press no one had bid on the silver medal or the box, which is red and inscribed “The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal”.

However, there were still three days to go until bidding closed and other, very similar medals had been bid on.

With three hours to go a police issue medal, which was being sold in Tunbridge Wells, was going for £170 and 17 people had bid on it.

When The Argus approached the man in Crawley about selling his medal he said: “I am selling the medal for a friend so I’m afraid I couldn’t possibly comment.”

One police officer, who asked to remain anonymous, said: “It’s very sad to see emergency service personal already selling their Diamond Jubilee Medals online. I haven’t even had mine yet.”

A total of 450,000 medals are due to be issued this year.

Members of the Armed Forces, the Royal household, emergency services personnel, prison officers and holders of the Victoria Cross and George Cross were among those eligible for the honours.

A spokesman for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport said: “The Diamond Jubilee medals are issued on behalf of Her Majesty as a mark of thanks to those in key frontline services.

“It is very disappointing to think that some of those so honoured have decided to take this action.

“However, as long as the medals in question were legitimately acquired by those trying to sell them, then doing so is not unlawful.”