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Remembered Today:

Uniform found in loft !


lucycutler

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Thought I'd post some photos of this uniform that we found in a suitcase in my Father-in-law's loft.  It wasn't his, although we're pretty sure that it was him who put it there.  In the 1950's he did do some house clearance work, so possibly he acquired it then.  We also have a pair of matching long trousers and everything is in very good condition.  All the badges with the exception of the shoulder titles, have hooks for easy removal.  The last picture shows what may be a date stamp possibly on the inside of the tunic?

Anything that you can tell us would be much appreciated.   :)

 

 

1267683108_Uniform1.jpg.3f4ce82bb775fb6a73e217478139300a.jpg

1265971714_Uniform2.jpg.d8cb9d80a738b63c53d8f8b29a3b3f6a.jpg

1698457780_Uniform3.jpg.012e36d81fb308270db65dd5564be02a.jpg

1956658135_Uniform4.jpg.47974c2e82dd3e9166a8e70f3f4e99b2.jpg

1428814823_Uniform5.jpg.990b009f32279fa07121f944eaf8b077.jpg

1632356649_Uniform6.jpg.9631f1b591e0c87163d9eb0dddf8811a.jpg  

 

 

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27 minutes ago, lucycutler said:

Thought I'd post some photos of this uniform that we found in a suitcase in my Father-in-law's loft.  It wasn't his, although we're pretty sure that it was him who put it there.  In the 1950's he did do some house clearance work, so possibly he acquired it then.  We also have a pair of matching long trousers and everything is in very good condition.  All the badges with the exception of the shoulder titles, have hooks for easy removal.  The last picture shows what may be a date stamp possibly on the inside of the tunic?

Anything that you can tell us would be much appreciated.   :)

 

 

1267683108_Uniform1.jpg.3f4ce82bb775fb6a73e217478139300a.jpg

1265971714_Uniform2.jpg.d8cb9d80a738b63c53d8f8b29a3b3f6a.jpg

1698457780_Uniform3.jpg.012e36d81fb308270db65dd5564be02a.jpg

1956658135_Uniform4.jpg.47974c2e82dd3e9166a8e70f3f4e99b2.jpg

1428814823_Uniform5.jpg.990b009f32279fa07121f944eaf8b077.jpg

1632356649_Uniform6.jpg.9631f1b591e0c87163d9eb0dddf8811a.jpg  

 

 

What a fantastic find. 

 The hooks were used as it made the insignia easy to remove. The uniforms needed frequent (ish) cleaning due to the heat. 

 

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It's in superb condition for its age, as are the badges.  It was made in April 1917.  If I recall correctly the 'K' stands for the clothing depot from which it was issued.  Someone on the forum will be able to say which that was.

Edited by FROGSMILE
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Agree, a really beautiful condition uniform for 103 yrs old, looks to have never been worn, amazing it has survived without moth or moisture damage for that length of time! Must have been carefully stored in that loft.

 

 I collected for many yrs Naval uniforms & for me to obtain one in this condition was a real treat!

Virtually all gone now but still have a few few RN Dress uniforms circa 1WW period.

 

Thanks for showing Jane!

Bryan.

Edited by RNCVR
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Hi,

 

Many thanks for sharing. Lovely condition.

 

Uniforms is one of the areas that I wish I knew a lot more about. Was it common for overseas service, rank stripes, etc to be attached by hooks rather than being directly sewn on to the uniform ? Also, was it common for consecutive overseas service chevron entitlement to be replaced by a cumulative 'badge' issue ? 

 

TIA

 

Regards

Chris

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4 minutes ago, clk said:

Hi,

 

Many thanks for sharing. Lovely condition.

 

Uniforms is one of the areas that I wish I knew a lot more about. Was it common for overseas service, rank stripes, etc to be attached by hooks rather than being directly sewn on to the uniform ? Also, was it common for consecutive overseas service chevron entitlement to be replaced by a cumulative 'badge' issue ? 

 

TIA

 

Regards

Chris


Hooks were very common Chris having long been the practice in India to facilitate the frequent laundering.  Badges were transferred to the clean uniform.

A set of cumulative badges suggest a ‘best’ set for end of war smartness of turnout.  

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Hi,

 

Please excuse my ignorance, but does that mean that the jacket is 1917 issue, made up to a Corporal in the West Surrey Regiment that was proficient in marksmanship, and who served overseas from 1914 to 1918, including (at least) latterly in a 'hot' climate ? Still eager to learn.

 

Regards

Chris

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9 hours ago, clk said:

Hi,

 

Please excuse my ignorance, but does that mean that the jacket is 1917 issue, made up to a Corporal in the West Surrey Regiment that was proficient in marksmanship, and who served overseas from 1914 to 1918, including (at least) latterly in a 'hot' climate ? Still eager to learn.

 

Me too please !

The tunic, shorts and long trousers were carefully folded, wrapped in clean paper and packed in a suitcase in the loft.  Very fortunately, the loft was nice and dry.  We'd actually gone up there looking for a framed studio portrait photo of my partner's Grandfather in his WW1 RFA uniform and also an oil painting of an Uncle in his WW2 RAF uniform, both of which we found ok.  It was a real bonus when we opened the suitcase and found the uniform.  Knowing that we were seriously into military history and the like, Father-in-law very kindly let us have it.  We're delighted to share it here and very pleased that you all have appreciated and taken pleasure from it.

 

I know that we'll never know who the owner of the uniform was, only that Father-in-law lived in Surrey, so presumably the owner was fairly local to him.  We've done a great deal of research on the family's history, and are quite certain that there is no connection to the West Surrey Reg.  On the basis of the date, badges and type of uniform, does anybody want to take a guess at the Battalion?

 

Lucy

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14 hours ago, clk said:

Hi,

 

Please excuse my ignorance, but does that mean that the jacket is 1917 issue, made up to a Corporal in the West Surrey Regiment that was proficient in marksmanship, and who served overseas from 1914 to 1918, including (at least) latterly in a 'hot' climate ? Still eager to learn.

 

Regards

Chris


Hello Chris (and Lucy),

The answer to all that is yes, assuming it is a genuinely intact uniform without any interference subsequent to the war, and given that it has been asserted it was secured in a box in an attic.

 

Edited by FROGSMILE
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3 hours ago, lucycutler said:

On the basis of the date, badges and type of uniform, does anybody want to take a guess at the Battalion?

 

Lucy


Pure circumstantial evidence would suggest the 2nd Battalion (i.e. regulars), who were in F&F 1914-17, then Italy 1917-18, before ending up in India in 1919 (yet another war with Afghanistan). 
The quality of preservation (regulars were indoctrinated to care for uniform) and smartness of the uniform (still a hint of embedded starch) would also tend to support that hypothesis, but of course it’s impossible to know for sure.

Edited by FROGSMILE
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13 minutes ago, munce said:

Is it strange at all that it has no medal ribbons up? Or were they less likely to be sewn to khaki drill because of the laundering issue?


For laundered uniforms they were on a pinned metal bar.

 

29D80570-1B7A-4269-BA81-E471C7E9FC02.jpeg

D1FC18D1-25C4-47A1-9F8F-B86D144271EE.jpeg

Edited by FROGSMILE
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1 hour ago, FROGSMILE said:


Pure circumstantial evidence would suggest the 2nd Battalion (i.e. regulars), who were in F&F 1914-17, then Italy 1917-18, before ending up in India in 1919 (yet another war with Afghanistan). 
The quality of preservation and smartness of the uniform (still a hint of embedded starch) would also tend to support that hypothesis, but of course it’s impossible to know for sure.

 

The inspection/ issue mark is Indian, and I'd hasten a better bet would be the 1/4th or 1/5th who both went to India from the UK in October 1914. The 1/4th were there for the duration.

 

The pattern is earlier WW1 and typically Indian Pattern KD, although that's not hard and fast.

 

1 hour ago, munce said:

Is it strange at all that it has no medal ribbons up? 

 

There is no sign, if you enlarge the images, of a bar being pinned to the jacket.

 

While serving in India in 1914 qualified you for the red chevron, you did not qualify for the 1914 Star (nor, as an aside, the 1914-15).

 

So: 1914 red chevron but no Star ribbon (nor any signs of one being pinned) suggests an India issued/ worn item, although a lot of Indian stuff ended up in the MEF.

 

The Waziristan campaign - involving the 2nd Bn - commenced in November 1919, by which time the BMW (March 1919) and Victory (July 1919) pair had been instituted, and the ribbons could have gone up. But, again, no sign of anything on the breast of this.

 

Given its condition, it's likely a very late/ demob issue for wearing home, being changed for Service Dress on arrival back in the UK.

 

However, as Frogsmile says, it is impossible to know for sure.

 

Cheers,

 

GT.

 

 

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Hi Chris, Lucy,

 

This is an India pattern KD jacket and trousers (note the stand and fall collar and straight cut pocket flaps). Superlative condition and undoubtedly a 'Best' uniform. The stamps are Indian - the Indian depots supplied British troops who were in Palestine and Mesopotamia. In terms of which battalion, I would suggest 4th Battalion, 160 Brigade, 53rd (Welsh Division). Whilst the regulation title for this battalion would be T/4/Queens, a one tier title would not be unusual I suspect. I have a very worn same example to the 4th Battalion Welsh Regiment in the same Division...

Ha Ha, Grovetown and I came in with essentially the same comments at the same time!

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Thank you both, Grovetown and Cymro.  As always, I am totally humbled by the depth of knowledge of GWF members!

Lucy

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55 minutes ago, Cymro said:

Ha Ha, Grovetown and I came in with essentially the same comments at the same time!

 

Great minds etc.

 

Late info from Chris Pollendine is that the K is possibly for Kolkata (Calcutta) Arsenal, and he thinks it's a 'going home' jacket too.

 

  

55 minutes ago, Cymro said:

4th Battalion, 160 Brigade, 53rd (Welsh Division). 

 

Red chevron says not, although of course could be a 1914-served draftee.

 

Four blue is against too, as that lot were in F&F and SD come June 1918.

 

Still not replied to email...sorry sorry sorry.

 

Cheers,

 

GT.

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Two photos of 4th Queen’s.

 

29981F67-E0A0-4204-BE3A-E665A29AA1E1.png

05993075-517C-4CD0-9549-4897AF367C16.jpeg

Edited by FROGSMILE
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And here pictures of 2nd Queens, who stayed in India, wearing essentially the same uniform until 1926.  Collar badges were not worn until after 1922.

 

96638E13-D8F5-406B-9B75-F836C7E7C089.jpeg

4B12ADF5-F66F-45B0-A17F-406994EA305B.jpeg

Edited by FROGSMILE
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Lovely photos, thank you.  Pity we don't have the helmet that goes with the uniform!  :(

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2 hours ago, Grovetown said:

 

Great minds etc.

 

Late info from Chris Pollendine is that the K is possibly for Kolkata (Calcutta) Arsenal, and he thinks it's a 'going home' jacket too.

 

  

 

Red chevron says not, although of course could be a 1914-served draftee.

 

Four blue is against too, as that lot were in F&F and SD come June 1918.

 

Still not replied to email...sorry sorry sorry.

 

Cheers,

 

GT.

Good point on the chevrons GT. Hadn’t considered that. 

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