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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

17th Lancers OSD


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Currently offered for sale, described as WW1 vintage. No tailor's label, name or service number. Seems odd that a Lancers coat does not have 'lancer' cuffs or shoulder chain mail. Also, Is the first ribbon a BEM and wasn't that only given to NCOs? I'm interested in what the Forum members think about it. Cheers, Bill




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The first medal ribbon is most likely for an OBE (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) or MBE (Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire). It is the second type Military Division ribbon which was introduced in 1936. The BEM ribbon for this period has the same design but narrower. Civil Division awards have the same coloured ribbon but without the central stripe.

The first pattern ribbon (1917 - 1935) was purple with a red central stripe to denote the Military Division and without the central stripe for the Civil Division.

I am by no means a uniform expert but the colour of the material appears to be too light for the Great War and I would have expected the Collar badges to be bronze (a deep chocolate colour). The tunic has the appearance of being inter-war in date to my eyes.


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Shoulder chains would not have been worn in Service Dress, I think.

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I would also place this into the interwars period, 30's probably, though they can be quite hard to date precisely, from the late 20's to early 40's when the austerity version is introduced. I also agree it is the OBE ribbon rather than the BEM. I have an RA officers SD with it on it.

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