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Remembered Today:

a soldier of the King's Liverpool Regiment


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I have a 'bi-metal' Other Ranks Pattern 4362A/1896 cap badge – of the type made between 1906 (when short sliders were introduced) to about 1915/1916 (simplified design/construction). During the war it would have been worn by all battalions except the 5th, 6th, 8th, 10th and 17th to 21st.

It is very corroded and may well have been ‘excavated’. It has the numbers 12700 individually stamped on its ‘slider’. The 1 is slightly awry so I wondered if the number might have been in two parts 1 then 2700.

I assume the numbers refer to the owner’s / soldier’s service number and looked up both possibilities on MIC.



Pte John Kay

Pte Alfred Murray



Pte John Neal

Pte Robert Curran

Pte James Hewitt


I then looked up these names on CWGC, which produced some equally puzzling details



Pte John Kay               KIA 11.12.1916, aged 41, 4th Battalion

Pte Alfred Murray      KIA 08.04.1916, 11th Battalion



Pte John Neal              KIA 08.08.1916, 1/5th Battalion

Pte Robert Curran       no results

Pte James Hewitt        no results


We can now dismiss the 2700 number as the first would not have worn this badge and the other two appear, happily, to have survived.


The two 12700 men both came from battalions that would have worn this badge.

Murray died 7 months before Neal.


Is there any way that I could decide which man was the owner of the badge. Would the number have been reused after Murray’s death ?  Aged 41, Kay might have been in the army for longer ???


I’d be very grateful for any advice on this

Many thanks



Edited by JulianB
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You haven't excluded the 7th Bn. They wore a white metal badge. Did some of them wear the bi-metal badge as a wartime expedient?


Why are you assuming that the original owner died in the war?


Can you post photos of the badge, front and back?

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Regarding the 7th Bn, they may well have started the war with the WM badge they had had since 1908 but they were no longer supplied with such since 1915.

(An Amendment dated 1st August 1916 to the Provisional Priced Vocabulary of Clothing and Necessaries 1915 belatedly recorded which badges were now issued by the RACD. The list of Kings TF battalions included the 5th, 6th, 8th and 10th Battalions. A note however specified that ‘Units not included in the list of special badges for the Territorial Force wear the badge authorised for their Regular regiments or corps.’ which clearly included the 7th Battalion. )

I assume the 7th had enough WM badges to keep them going for a while so, yes perhaps the 7th should be also excluded - in any case it does not affect the badge in question.  The fact is that there are only two 12700 numbers for Liverpool are in MIC - but yes, it may have been yet another 12700 worn by someone who only saw Home Service.


I did not assume that the numbered soldier died in the war, I wanted to glean further information on the number.

I would be grateful to learn if there are other ways to identify numbers.


The badge looks as though it had been buried somewhere. I have no idea where or when this badge was found. 


My photographic skills are poor but any 'collectors book' would illustrate what kind of 'bi-metal' badge it is (though there are variations).  Nevertheless, I'll try.

The original Sealed Pattern is in the IWM and other details of it's authorisation and issuance are at TNA.

Edited by JulianB
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I don't think the fact they survived dismisses Curran and Hewitt: there might be all sorts of reasons why their badges might have been lost, surely?

Edited by Steven Broomfield
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