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About dsh282

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  1. Although an even older thread now that I am replying to it 4 years later I thought it may be of interest to the GMIC community for posterity. Mess dress is worn on a fairly regular basis by the Commissioner ranks of the Met Police. The rationale for this is that they are often invited to formal dinners / occasions where they are representing the MPS in an official capacity and on such occasions mess dress would be the sartorially-correct order of dress. That said, it is not restricted to the "Commissioner" ranks and can in theory be worn by any officer; in reality anyone below Chief Officer rank are unlikely to want or need it. I own the above jacket. It would have formed part of a Met Sergeants' mess dress. The jacket has the officers' name inside and his postings suggest he worked in a role requiring this order of dress. There are a number of photos on the internet of a number of our Commissioners wearing mess dress. It further consists of a white shirt, black bow tie, dark navy blue waistcoat and trousers, with the trousers having a 2 inch oak leaf stripe on the leg. I believe ranks below the Commissioners do not have this stripe. Despite its traditional look I would surmise that the concept of mess dress within the Met Police does not predate the 1950s. I have never seen mess dress prior to this period, and a culmination of the "militarisation" of the service by Commissioners such as Lord Trenchard and some of his successors from the 1930s onwards and the plethora of ex-servicemen joining after WW2 may have been responsible for this. Prior to the 1930s a number of the uniforms available to Commissioners (such as their full dress still worn on ceremonial events such as trooping the colour) would likely have been worn, it being the direct ancestor of mess dress in the military too.