From The Archives: How the British Soldier of 1939 Goes To War

September 12, 2017

From The Archives: How the British Soldier of 1939 Goes To War

"The battledress" of the British Army was finally approved in April 1939 and is now worn by both men and officers. It is a two-piece garment of khaki serge consisting of a blouse and trousers, buckling at the wrists and ankles, the ankles also being protected by web anklets. The weight of the uniform is about 12 lb. This soldier is wearing battledress but is not completely equipped. While wearing full marching order, the infantryman carries a valise (or pack) on his back in place of a haversack seen here, the latter being transferred to the left hip above the bayonet on the right by the water bottle.

The valise holds the great-coat, cardigan when not worn and such other personal effects as individual skill in packing can get into it; while the haversacks are a hold-all with comb, tooth-brush, shaving outfit, socks, mess tin, emergency ration etc. The large patch pocket on the trousers is to hold maps and papers. Though officers carry additional articles of equipment, such as revolvers and binoculars and compasses, their is nothing in their uniform to distinguish them from the men, except the shoulder badge".

Image & excerpt found in The War Illustrated, on pinterest. See more, here.

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