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RGA


joanne.rees1

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Members of the RA, RGA and RFA wear a lanyard on the left shoulder. Was this purely "decorative" ? did it have anything attached ? or was it symbolic of something from the regiments past ??

Regards

Jo.

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Originally a clasp Knife, for getting stones out of horses hoofs and for cutting reins from runaways....

and the lanyard could actually be used to fire a gun in desperation

Rgds

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Hello,

I always thought that for Gunners the lanyard was for the last purpose quoted above. When the gun fired, it recoiled and in some cases the firing lever went with it. Hence the need for something long and flexible.

I was not a Gunner and stand to be corrected.

Old Tom

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So where did their whistle go? What is in their right hand pocket on a short cord or strap if it isnt their clasp knife?

Roop

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Members of the RA, RGA and RFA wear a lanyard on the left shoulder. Was this purely "decorative" ? did it have anything attached ? or was it symbolic of something from the regiments past ??

Regards

Jo.

I have a hazy notion that the fact that the lanyard is on the left shoulder is of symbolic significance. Some of the RA men will put us right.

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Woolwich told me (when I asked about the significance of two training units at Oswestry wearing lanyards on different shoulders,) that it was a can of worms and would not attempt an answer!

Daggers

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Hi,

Just working on logic, a driver would have a Knife and spike for getting stones out of horses hoofs, a gunner a fuse key, a SNCO or Officer a whistle. A sailor (A lanyard is a navy term meaning a rope or cord that has been spliced for a specific purpose. EG To tie a whistle to, or a knife or a flid (Tool for splicing ropes), a can spanner or bottle opener.

Regards Charles

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The Lanyards are clasp knife lanyards

The white lanyards were issued with each clasp knife.

Per RA Standing orders the lanyard was worn around left shoulder with knife in breast pocket. In the 1920's this was changed to right shoulder.

This was in no way a unique distinction of the RA. Pre-War all mounted troops were issued clasp knifes with lanyards. How worn was up to the Corps. In the case of the ASC these were worn round the left shoulder with knife in the breast pocket too.

1914 Mobilization regulations extended issue of lanyards and knife to just about everyone else and these are commonly seen being worn by Infantry in the exact manner.

I do think these things were also worn decrotively whether or not a knife was at the other end.

Joe Sweeney

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Please find the Royal Artillery explanation.

John

Perhaps veering off topic, but I was interested in this comment in the above about the change of lanyards from one side to the other:

'But there are some who insist that 1924 was the date of change, when sloping of rifles over the left shoulder would soil the white lanyard.'

I had assumed SMLE drill was always as I was taught it with the No.4, and pix of troops marching in the Great War show them with rifles on the left shoulder -- so did the gunners do it differently?

cheers Martin B

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