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Paul L Murphy

Badges for some slightly less scary people...the WO2

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Given the popularity of the thread on RSM badges I thought I would follow up with a thread on WO Class 2 badges. While these are not as impressive as the RSM badges they are still nice and the Guards' badges look very well. So here we go ....

First up a few Kings Crown pieces. The first is in brass and would have been worn in shirtsleeve order.

Next is a nice full dress bullion example. A bit of wear to the velvet but still a nice badge.

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Next we move to Queen's Crown.

First we have the basic badge in anodised metal

Followed by this on a black backing. This type is used by a number of the cavalry regiments.

The next type is for the Women's Royal Army Corps.

The full dress bullion badges come in two basic types, red backed or black backed so here is one of each.

http://gmic.co.uk/uploads/monthly_09_2009/post-1487-125205868507.jpghttp://gmic.co.uk/uploads/monthly_09_2009/post-1487-125205869932.jpg

Edited by Paul L Murphy

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Now we move on to the badges worn on chevrons by Guards' colour sergeants and on mess dress by WO2s in the Guards Regiments.

First we have the WO2 mess dress badge of the Coldstream Guards.

Followed by the same badge for the Scots Guards.

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Now we move to the full dress WO 2 colour badge worn by the different Guards regiments. I do not have them all but here we go on most of them. You will notice that the quality is far higher than you see on most of the badges sold on ebay. From time to time there are originals sold on ebay but a lot of what is listed are Pakistani made copies.

First up, two different Coldstream Guards WO 2 badges. The second piece is more recent.

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And finally for today the Light Infantry version of this badge.

If anyone has any more then feel free to add them. Also let's make it Commonwealth countries as well so we keep it in line with the thread on RSM badges.

Edited by Paul L Murphy

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Paul - I think you are wise to split - this has proved to be an excellent thread.

I have a question though - when I was doing my mil. service in Australia we were always taught that a Company or Battery Sgt. Maj. wore a plain crown and was a W.O.3.. A wt. officer class 2 wore the crown with a laurel wreath. Obviously the Guards make their own rules, but what is the practise in the modern British Army - all 800 of them !!!

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Paul - I think you are wise to split - this has proved to be an excellent thread.

I have a question though - when I was doing my mil. service in Australia we were always taught that a Company or Battery Sgt. Maj. wore a plain crown and was a W.O.3.. A wt. officer class 2 wore the crown with a laurel wreath. Obviously the Guards make their own rules, but what is the practise in the modern British Army - all 800 of them !!!

Both the plain crown and the crown in a wreath are worn by a WO 2. I do not think they have the rank of WO 3 in the British Army. The crown alone is worn by a "Warrant Officer Class 2 - Sergeant Major" and the crown and wreath by "Warrant Officer Class 2 - Quartermaster".

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The rank of CSM for the infantry only dates back to the advent of the Great War as pointed out in the post regarding RSM's and the introduction of the four company organisation of battalions. Prior to that each battalion had eight Colour Sgts for the eight company's within a battalion. Their badge of rank on full dress was the crossed union flags with a crown above three chevrons. However no equivalent badge was produced for wear with SD, so a compromise was reached whereby a large crown was worn above three chevrons on the upper arm. Later this badge would be worn by those junior Clr Sgt's who became Company Quartermaster Sgt's. The four senior 'Colours' went onto become Company Sgt Majors who adopted the badge of the former 'Sgt Major' - a crown - on the lower left cuff.

Edited by Graham Stewart

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In 1968 when Canada abandoned British uniforms for our own national one we altered the rank structure. Mind you, this was mostly in name for NCOs.

Army "Staff Sergeant" became "Warrant Officer", the 3 chevrons disappeared and the crown moved to the lower arm.

Air Force "Flight Sergeant" also became "Warrant Officer", the 3 chevrons went away and the crown went down to the lower arm.

Navy Petty Officer 1st class, retained the name but also lost the chevrons and the crown went to the lower arm.

What you call Quartermaster sergeant, we call Master Warrant Officer in the air force, Chief Petty Officer 2nd class in the navy and company sergeant major in the army, it's the rank between W.O./P.O.1 and C.W.O./R.S.M./C.P.O.1

Below are the ranks of air force W.O. and M.W.O., only the background colour changes for the army (green) and the navy (black). For the navy, the single crown is the rank of Petty Officer 1st class, the crown with the wreath is Chief Petty Officer 2nd class.

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Paul - no. 22. I always thought this backing colour was for the Hussars.

No. 23. A most interesting item that requires close examination. The backing material may be a clue, however, the shape of the crown is typical of the Georgian period (pre 1830). Even should it prove to be later, the simplistic design is unusual.

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