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"Good Reference for British Infantry Uniforms '44-45 NWE" Topic

9 Posts

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581 hits since 22 Sep 2018
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

MiniPigs22 Sep 2018 4:28 p.m. PST

Especially for divisional sleeve patches and how they were arranged. Any clear format will do but color is always appreciated.

I am most interested in the armoured infantry but anything good on the British uniform patch placement is well received.

John Armatys23 Sep 2018 4:00 a.m. PST

The British Soldier from D-Day to VE-Day, Volume 1 by Jean Bouchery, Histoire & Collections, 1998 has a section on "Layout of badges sewn on BD blouse sleeves" on pages 84 and 85.

andysyk23 Sep 2018 5:45 a.m. PST

Your better off searching on line for the specific units. Practice varied a fair bit. Some Armoured units never wore Div patches.

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP23 Sep 2018 10:15 a.m. PST

Osprey "British Battle Insignia (2) 1939-45" might be a good starting point. WRT specific units, I either search the Internet, or scan my WWII library. Of course, many times insignia was removed, but that's no fun for miniatures painting …



Personal logo enfant perdus Supporting Member of TMP23 Sep 2018 2:24 p.m. PST

The Osprey volume really is the best starting point, especially for wargamers. There are books that cater more to the collector that are harder to come by and/or fairly pricey.

An interesting resource I use is searching the stock of British miltaria dealers. There is a subset of insignia collecting that focuses on "combinations". These are usually sleeve insignia (or sometimes removable epaulette slides) that have been cut from the BD or KD blouse.

Most dealers I do business with use the same shop format, so just type "combination" in the search field. Also, they tend to leave "sold" items up as a reference for collectors.
Good places to start:

Personal logo enfant perdus Supporting Member of TMP23 Sep 2018 2:48 p.m. PST

That 4th KSLI in the center is shown in the Osprey. Other Regiments in the brigade should have followed suit, although they wouldn't have had the Croix de Guerre flash above the Black Bull. 3/Monmouthshire would have two scarlet arm of service strips, 1/Herefordshire would have three.

I'm not certain as to whether 3/Mons wore the Regimental flash as part of 11th Armoured. I expect they did. 2/Mons did as part of 53rd (Welsh) Division:

8th Rifle Brigade images I have seen are simply the cloth shoulder title over the Black Bull with a rifle green arm of service strip below that.

hindsTMP Supporting Member of TMP23 Sep 2018 3:13 p.m. PST

OP asked about "British", but in case he's interested, this site is very good for Canadians / Canadiens.


Martin Rapier24 Sep 2018 11:24 p.m. PST

From top to bottom:

Regimental flash.
Divisional flash.
Arm of service strip.

But lots of regiments didn't wear this in the field, and the uniform regulations said you weren't supposed to. Save all the colourful stuff for parades and walking out.

Personal logo enfant perdus Supporting Member of TMP25 Sep 2018 7:37 a.m. PST

and the uniform regulations said you weren't supposed to

That's only true in the earliest stages of the War. ACI 419 (May 1940) explicitly banned Divisional signs. Arm of Service strips were authorized in August 1940 and ACI 1118 (September 1940) revoked ACI 419. It was amended several times and subsequent ACIs allowed for Regimental flashes, Brigade patches, and markings denoting previous distinguished service. Colored cloth shoulder titles were the last to be authorized, when ACI 905 (June 1943) gave a thorough and comprehensive set of instructions regarding distinguishing marks. Troops embarking for overseas were ordered to remove all distinguishing marks by ACI 906 (June 1943), however 21st Army Group was exempted from this when ordered to their embarkation points in June 1944.

In the examples I have above, the Hallamshires is the most basic; cloth shoulder title, formation sign, and AoS strip. The 59th Division example is interesting in that it omits the shoulder title, having the formation sign, AoS strip, and Regimental flash (7th Royal Norfolks). The 4th KSLI example has no Regimental flash, but displays the Croix de Guerre awarded in the Great War.

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