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Entrance to my WW1 Room

The focus of my collection over the last 30 years has been the South African conribution to the First World War with the emphasis on the Western Front. The participants were all volunteers and specific requirements for the South African involvement was received from the Imperial Government. The South Africans experienced heavy casualties during all the major battles on the Western Front. The photographs are intended to give an outline and a general background to my collection.

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The back wall of my ww1 room, showing frames with badges indicating the various formations that the South African Infantry Brigade formed part of on the Western Front.

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A showcase displaying a variety of marching compasses, officer's swords, folding trench periscope, officer's wristwatch, SA issue ww1 clasp knives and other sundry items.

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A second showcase that contains original Pattern 08 webbing with original ammunition pouches on the left hand side, cloth extra ammunition bandolier with markings,variation of holsters for revolvers, a variety of bandoliers used by SA forces inclucing a very rare canvas bandolier marked to the South African Military Constabulary, various leather waist belts, signal pistols, two so-called hate belts one originating from the German South West African campaign and a WW1 Gurkha Kukri.

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Some of my WW1 shoulder title collection. The highlight of this display is the very rare South African Aviation Corps original cloth shoulder title.

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http://gmic.co.uk/uploads/monthly_03_2009/post-3034-1237106587.jpghttp://gmic.co.uk/uploads/monthly_03_2009/post-3034-1237106617.jpg

This is part of my Royal Flying Corps Display. I am privileged to have many articles pertaining to Lt Arthur Betteridge in my collection. He wrote his memoirs entitled " COMBAT IN AND OVER DELVILLE WOOD". Betteridge initially joined the South African infantry and was wounded during the battle of Delville Wood. He later joined the Royal Flying Corps and flew air operation over the wood as a fighte pilot. He was a pall bearer at the most decorated South african of WW1, Catain Beauchamp-Proctor's funeral.(VC, DSO, MC, DFC). Betteridge was interviewed and, is quoted at length, in various ww1 publications.

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The RFC/RAF corner which contains Betteridge's medal group, a variaty of portrait photographs, Deeds of Commission to both the RFC and RAF, RFC wing variations and also Betteridge's RFC plaque.

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A closer view of the Betteridge display which depicts a clock made for him by his aircraft mechanics in early 1919. The mechanics used the propellor of a Sopwith-Camel aircraft.

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The Endley contribution to World War 1. My great-uncle's Robert and William Endley who played their role in the First World War. Robert, as part of the South African Scottish or 4 SAI, was maimed for life on the Western Front.

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A German machine gun that was brought back to South Africa after WW1. Some of these weapons were captured in Johannesburg from striking mine workers during the 1922 Rand Revolt.

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A uniform and soft trench cap to a Warrant Officer in the 1st South African Infantry Regiment, formed from volunteers from the Cape Province.

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A bomber corporal of the 2nd South African Infantry Regiment formed by volunteers from Natal and the Orange Free state. He is equipped with full marching order equipment.

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A sargeant of the 3rd South African Infantry Regiment, formed by volunteers from the Transvaal and the then Rhodesia. This Regiment was disbanded in 1918 due to the heavy losses incurred by the South African Infantry Brigade in France.

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A member of the 4th South African Infantry Regiment or the SA Scottish. This Regiment was formed by members from the South African Scottish Regiments(Transvaal Scottish, etc) and the Caledonian Societies. The photograph depicts full marching order and includes a trench foldable lantern.

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A member of the SA Scottish during the Senussi campaign which was fought in North Africa in early 1916. The member is wearing a wolseley pattern sun helmet.

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A leather trench jerkin which has WW1 markings inside. The brodie pattern helmet has the insignia of the SA Scottish painted on the side.

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The uniforms of a WW1 South African officer who was wounded during the battle of the Somme. He was one of the many South Africans who became officers in British Regiments. His female partner is dressed in the vary scarce uniform of the WW1 WAAC. Both uniforms are attributable to their original owners.

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Heliographs, Signalling lamps, various headdress examples including an originally camoflage painted brodie helmet as well as ww1 demolition set.

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Some webbing which includes SChutztruppen webbing with bayonet. This webbing was used by the South African Machine gun sections during the WW1 East African campaigns.

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