A rare combination of a tailor made 1937 pattern battledress blouse and cap worn by the same General Officer. Undoubtedly by the wear and condition of both of these pieces they have been together since WWII, unfortunately a name is not available anywhere on the tunic to identify the wearer. Privately purchased 1937 pattern battledress blouse, worn in a full buttoned up style, rank insignia in cloth to the epaulettes of a Lieutenant General, crossed sword with crown above. Standard red collar patches with gold bullion centre with Generals buttons. To the upper right hand breast a row of medal ribbons, which include the MBE, WWI trio, General Service Medal and an unidentified Maroon coloured Order. The tunic has seen much wear and unfortunately some moth damage. The area at the base of the upper left hand pocket has been stitch repaired from moth damage, there are also areas of moth damage to the right of the left hand pocket, the remainder of the garment is relatively moth free. Accompanied by the General’s visor cap, which is approximately size 55 or 56, constructed as a General’s cap. The red band to the centre is fitted within the original construction of the cap. There is no moth damage anywhere on the cap itself, some staining to the red band to the right of the bullion wire General’s badge. The side buttons are of the General Service type. To the interior the brown leather sweatband all in place, the upper inner protective waterproof lining shredded, the maker’s mark of the cap ‘J.Daniels & Co.Limited, St. James’s Place, London’ still deeply applied to the leather sweatband. At the interior back of the cap to the sweatband there appears to be a name applied, which unfortunately we have not been able to decipher, if it was possible to decipher this name it would enhance the desirability of this outfit completely, nevertheless to get a one owner worn visor cap and battledress blouse for a General of WWII is difficult.
A good clean example of the now rare and highly desirable 1s pattern Fairbairn Sykes knife. The blade is full length, minor spotting to the blade, good clear ‘The FS Fighting Knife’ and ‘Wilkinson Sword’ logo either side of the upper forte of the blade. Standard S shaped cross guard, which has lost some of its plating. Good condition machine turned grip, in its original 1st pattern scabbard with rounded nickel lower chape. The hilt retaining leather strap has been replaced. The date ’30.11.42’ hand inscribed into the leather on the rear of the upper part of the scabbard.
An undamaged example of the scarce Winston Churchill jug, maker marked at the base. One slight chip to the rear of the Admiral’s visor cap. The pose is unusual in that Churchill is wearing his naval cap whilst being the 1st Lord of the Admiralty in the very short period before being appointed Prime Minister in 1940.
An absolutely mint example of a double dated mark 3 British combat helmet of WWII, first introduced to combat on D-Day, worn in large numbers by Canadian troops and some British, this example with all of its original rough sand finish with just very minor abrasions, the liner is clearly dated ‘44’ and this is the first example we have had of the shell being also matching marked ‘Mark 3 1944’ with its canvas strap. It cannot be bettered in condition.
An ultra rare Lock & Company of London made Polish General officers cap constructed in the classic Chapska style, worn by Polish forces, being London made it has to be part of the exile Polish forces of WWII. The upper part of the cap is constructed in British style khaki with a cross section of silver lace across the crown, the sides in the colour crimson, which indicates Armed Forces High Command General Staff Corps, we would then presume that this officer has been promoted within the United Kingdom during WWII. To the exterior of the crimson band is a further blue band with the silver lace of General rank with three stars to the front of the cap. To the cap is the Polish national badge with its crown, Polish eagle side buttons in white metal. To the interior the upper inner crown is the London maker’s label of ‘Lock & Company’ with an inner protective waterproof shield. The brown leather sweatband is all intact but is loose at various parts to the main body of the cap. An ultra rare piece of headdress of WWII.
A complete uniform comprising four pocket service tunic, trousers, Sam Browne belt, Swagger stick, service shoes and visor cap belonging to Lieutenant H.A. Chapman the Royal Norfolk Regiment Royal Artillery. Excellent condition visor cap, Royal Artillery badge, standard brown strap, interior sweatband all complete, ‘Moss Bros’ gilded label to the upper inner crown of the cap, no moth damage. Four pocket service tunic with a Stud and ‘Millington Conduit Street, London W1’ tailors label to the tunic, standard four pocket configuration open collar wear, all King’s Crown Royal Artillery buttons fitted, bronze Royal Artillery collar badges, twin rank pips in bronze to each shoulder board, no moth damage or staining. Complete with the straight leg service trousers, again without any moth damage. Sam Browne in excellent condition. A set of brown service shoes. A photograph of Chapman wearing this uniform is with a large format print of the 481st Field Battery 112 Field Regiment football team, he is standing to the left of the image wearing this very uniform. Attached to the uniform are his 1939-45 Star, France and German Star, War & Defence Medal. Accompanying the uniform is a 12 inch record dated ‘1942’ handwritten ‘Belsen 1945 from Hungarian Band’. Accompanying the record is a card, which reads ‘I wish you Happy Christmas and New Year, please accept our souvenir kindly in the name of the Hungarians in Bergen-Belsen’. Further documents include Belsen Camp pass issued to Lieutenant Chapman 273988, he is authorised to enter into Belsen Camp dated ‘19th June 1945’. A letter probably from the Hungarian contingent, which reads ‘Please allow me to express my grateful thanks for you much unselfish help shown towards us, I knew that you have much annoyance while you are working so please receive kindly from me this good humour making modest remembrance, which is sent with this letter.’ with an unknown pen signature. Standard letter from the War Office dated ‘22nd June 1946’ releasing Chapman from his army service and entitling him to keep his honorary rank of Lieutenant. Lastly a single canvas double sided printed card as entry for the 129th Infantry Brigade officers club at Hohne (Belsen Camp). A highly interesting artefact from the concentration camp of WWII.
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