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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Hampshire uniform badge and chevrons


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Hello folks,

Can anyone please help with identifying / interpreting the chevrons and badge on the lower left sleeve in this photo ?

Also why do the chevrons sometimes face the opposite way or a lower position on the sleeve ?

Thanks in advance



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He's a Corporal. If the chevrons are on the lower sleeve, and inverted, they are Good Conduct badges for periods of good conduct - one for 2 years and then onwards.

The badge on the cuff is a trade badge of some sort.

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The badge on the lower sleeve appears to be that for a 'Heavy Machine Gunner'.


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MG - Machine Gunner


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Thanks for the replies its a great help but at the moment it doesn't fit who I hoped this man might be...... So bit more checking to be done if only I had a service / pension record.


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Good Conduct chevron:


"The Good-Conduct stripe was a British Army award for good conduct during service in the Regular Army by an enlisted man. The insignia was a points-up chevron of NCO's lace worn on the lower sleeve of the uniform jacket. It was given to Privates and Lance Corporals for 2, 6, 12, or 18 years' service without being subject to formal discipline. A further stripe was awarded for every 5 years of good service after the 18th (23-, 28-, 33-, 38-, 43-, or 48 years). If the soldier had never had their name written in the Regimental Conduct Book, they earned the 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th stripes after 16-, 21-, 26-, and 32 years respectively.

It granted a pay bonus as a sort of "carrot" to get non-promotable enlisted men to behave. As the "stick", a stripe would be removed for an infraction (a write-up in the Regimental Conduct Book) and a Court Martial would forfeit all of them. The soldier would then have to start from the last stripe earned and work his way up again. It was also removed upon attaining the rank of Corporal, as Non-Commissioned Officers were promoted by merit and punished by loss of rank.

If a soldier left the service upon completing his enlistment and later re-enlisted as a Private or Lance Corporal in the Regular Army, his Good Conduct stripes were reinstated at the last level he achieved. If a soldier transferred as a Private or Lance Corporal to the Reserve he retained his Good-Conduct stripes. If a Private in the Militia, Imperial Yeomanry or Territorial Force was mobilized they could receive Good-Conduct stripes for the cumulative duration of their active service. In the Pay Warrant of 1914 the recruit could now choose between Good Conduct pay (a bonus for each Good Conduct stripe earned) or Service pay (a smaller bonus for overseas service).

Introduced in 1836, they were originally worn on the lower right sleeve and were worn by Privates, Lance-Corporals and Corporals. On 1 March 1881 a General Order moved them to the lower left sleeve. In 1939, the maximum number of chevrons worn were reduced to 5, regardless of how many had been earned. The Good Conduct stripe was discontinued by the British Army in the 1970s with the creation of the "up-or-out" military."

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