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"British units in berets" Topic


9 Posts

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913 hits since 28 Apr 2013
©1994-2014 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Sidney Fiddler Inactive Member28 Apr 2013 10:17 a.m. PST

Besides the famous crack Commandos , Para's, Tank units,
did any other units adopt the beret before the war's close.
If they did what colour were they ?
I think a general issue baggy khaki was being worn by late
44 by some line units or did some regs adopt personal
colours (green for Irish, Sherwood's etc) and were they
ever worn in action like the commandos , SAS ,Para's?

GNREP828 Apr 2013 11:34 a.m. PST

I think that the baggy khaki one you mention is not strictly a beret either but the 'Cap, General Service'
link
I've never been entirely clear at what point the Guards etc introduced the brownish beret – I've seen some people depict tank crews with it but others show them in black tank berets.

Scots of course wore tam o'shanters and N.Irish units the caubeen not the much hated GS Cap.

Personal logo Martin Rapier Supporting Member of TMP28 Apr 2013 11:53 a.m. PST

The GS Cap was indeed a baggy khaki serge thing and replaced the Field Service Cap. It was essentially a beret, but made of serge, so rather hard to shape. Both gave opportunities for wearing ridiculous headgear at ludicrous angles.

Actual berets were worn by tank crews, Army & Navy commandos(late in the war), paratroops and airlanding troops and some of those SAS types. They were also worn by enterprising soldiers in other branches when off duty, obtained via private purchase.

Polish paras wore grey berets with the badge in the centre and generally pulled back over the heads rather than to one side.

Personal logo enfant perdus Supporting Member of TMP28 Apr 2013 7:19 p.m. PST

Reconnaissance Corps wore black RAC berets from January 1944. Before that (and in many cases after) they wore khaki or grass-green berets. Some elements in the Scottish Divisions wore the ToS. It really depends on which reg't of the Recce Corps, at which time, etc.

11th Hussars wore a brown beret with a crimson band.

spontoon Supporting Member of TMP29 Apr 2013 7:21 p.m. PST

I've always thought the Cap, General Service rather attractive! Same basic construction as the Tam O'Shanter, but without a toorie!

Can't stand that khaki thing the highland regiments wear now! Looks like they're using up child-sized Tam O'Shanters!

Jemima Fawr01 May 2013 5:07 a.m. PST

EP mentioned the chestnut-brown beret & crimson band of the 11th Hussars. The officers of the Scots Greys also adopted a grey beret during WW2 and I seem to remember that the officers of the Royal Dragoons (?) also adopted a beret (chestnut-brown, iirc?). ORs in these regiments wore the usual RAC black beret.

The Guards Tank/Armoured Regiments wore the RAC's black beret during WW2, while Guards Infantry Battalions wore the khaki GS Cap. The Guards' khaki beret was a post-war item.

Royal Marine01 May 2013 1:29 p.m. PST

… there can be only one …

Jemima Fawr01 May 2013 2:39 p.m. PST

I agree, the Army Commandos' green beret looks spiffing. Others were also allowed to wear it… ;o)

Royal Marine01 May 2013 3:10 p.m. PST

Oooooohhhh … The Army ran away from Cdo Service after WW2, so the RM took it from then. Now CTCRM does the Army a favour by giving them a little extra training to improve their skills.

Round 2, seconds out.

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