British BD in use with Canadians ...

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British BD in use with Canadians ...

Steven Stoddard
Steven Stoddard

December 9th, 2010, 7:50 pm #1

I searched the index of the forum and read as many posts as I could about use of British BD among Canadians in Italy, but wanted to check back and see if any information has surfaced, since many of the posts were from nearly 10 years ago. I read a post that I beleive either Mr. Dorosh or Mr. Storey mentioned that British BD was indeed used (primarily) in Italy by Canadian Forces, 1943-44. I hope I have that correct! If not my apologies....
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Ed Storey
Ed Storey

December 9th, 2010, 9:43 pm #2

You are correct and nothing has changed.
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

December 10th, 2010, 12:34 am #3

I searched the index of the forum and read as many posts as I could about use of British BD among Canadians in Italy, but wanted to check back and see if any information has surfaced, since many of the posts were from nearly 10 years ago. I read a post that I beleive either Mr. Dorosh or Mr. Storey mentioned that British BD was indeed used (primarily) in Italy by Canadian Forces, 1943-44. I hope I have that correct! If not my apologies....
Further to Ed's answer, it might help if we knew the context of your enquiry; i.e. why you are asking. If you have some more details on the query perhaps we can help guide you a bit more - i.e. is this general enquiry, are you putting together a re-enactment uniform, are you researching an original BD blouse you think belongs to a Canadian unit, etc.
Michael Dorosh
Webmaster
canadiansoldiers.com
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Steven Stoddard
Steven Stoddard

December 10th, 2010, 3:16 pm #4

Michael,

Thank you to Mr. Storey (I read as many of your posts as I could - there are hundreds - and picked up as much information as was contained in the threads, wish I had more time).

Michael, to answer your question, my query is about WWII reenacting. There are several interested reenactors here in the U.S. who are interested in representing Canadian WWII infantry. My apologies up front as we could not find sufficient sources of repro Canadian BD and we heard (and read) about some success in the past with dying British repro BD but do not want to take the chance of flubbing it up. When I read on the forum (here) that some Canadian units were issued with British wartime BD, I read on.

We would like to know what divisions / regiments wore British (Pattern 37/40) BD and if it was only a one-time issue before Canadian stocks arrived or if supply was constant from the UK, Egypt or India with wartime manufactured British Battledress.

In short, we want to outfit our unit with the most accessable uniformity we can find (within the limitations of finding the correct insignia) for a correct interpretation. (my apologies to those who do para and commando, but WWII reenacting is top heavy on 'special forces' units, something we wanted to avoid; a close friend of ours attended a show battle event in the midwest only to have a Canadian born spectator ask where the 'tommies' were in a sea of red and green berets).
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Bill A
Bill A

December 10th, 2010, 3:35 pm #5

Hello Steven, If your are going to use the Brit pattern BD, the first step is to research the order of battle of the Canadian Corps in Italy. (As has been established, 1 Canadian Corps was in the Italian theatre and for most intents and purposes under the RAOC supply system. Insignia is one of the exceptions to that general rule of thumb.) Interpreting your last paragraph, I would suggest that your group examine the regiments of 1 Canadian Infantry Division. There is a reasonable reference to that Division's on wiki, athttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1st_Canadi ... y_Division. (The entry says 1939 - 1945, but the order of battle changed several times before the Division embarked for Sicily.)
In reference to insignia, the patches and shoulder titles for 1 CID are mostly easy to find. There are some famous regiments to re-enact in that Division, and their insignia is not all that difficult to obtain. And, you have your choice of some Scottish regiments, the permanent force regiments, or some famous militia regiments. If you wish to do 5 Canadian Armoured Division, there was two infantry brigades in that Division. (One note, there is a strong Canadian re-enactment group that does the Perth Regiment.)http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1st_Canadi ... y_Division.
Starting with the regiment will give you a great base to build upon.
One note, these infantry regiments wore summer dress for significant periods of time in 1943, and 1944. The BD was issued in October of each year IIRC.
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Michael Dorosh
Michael Dorosh

December 10th, 2010, 3:56 pm #6

All summer clothing used in Italy by Canadian soldiers was of British/Indian manufacture, not Canadian, which would also make things easier from a logistic POV. The KD uniforms are also much nicer to wear in the summer for re-enactments, when the 'season' seems to be.

Repro British KD is reasonably easy to obtain. Brassards of various patterns for the insignia can be locally made up (I have done these on my own sewing machine) and unit insignia can even be quickly changed in order to augment other units for an event.

I suspect KD is also less expensive.
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Ed Storey
Ed Storey

December 10th, 2010, 4:02 pm #7

Michael,

Thank you to Mr. Storey (I read as many of your posts as I could - there are hundreds - and picked up as much information as was contained in the threads, wish I had more time).

Michael, to answer your question, my query is about WWII reenacting. There are several interested reenactors here in the U.S. who are interested in representing Canadian WWII infantry. My apologies up front as we could not find sufficient sources of repro Canadian BD and we heard (and read) about some success in the past with dying British repro BD but do not want to take the chance of flubbing it up. When I read on the forum (here) that some Canadian units were issued with British wartime BD, I read on.

We would like to know what divisions / regiments wore British (Pattern 37/40) BD and if it was only a one-time issue before Canadian stocks arrived or if supply was constant from the UK, Egypt or India with wartime manufactured British Battledress.

In short, we want to outfit our unit with the most accessable uniformity we can find (within the limitations of finding the correct insignia) for a correct interpretation. (my apologies to those who do para and commando, but WWII reenacting is top heavy on 'special forces' units, something we wanted to avoid; a close friend of ours attended a show battle event in the midwest only to have a Canadian born spectator ask where the 'tommies' were in a sea of red and green berets).
There is certainly lots of potential for a Canadian unit to be issued British BD during the winter months in Italy. For the summer months, British or Indian manufacture KD was issued. British manufacture 1937 Pattern Web would also be appropriate with either early manufacture British MK II or Canadian Mk II helmets. Depending on the unit and the situation, the barest of insignia to the full allotment could be worn.

The key would be to make sure that everyone is dressed to a similar standard that that it is known that the reason British manufacture uniforms are being worn was that the clothing was provided from Mediterrainean theatre stores.
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Joined: April 5th, 2011, 12:46 pm

July 18th, 2011, 3:14 pm #8

Hello all!

First let me say that the level of knowledge and information on this board is simply superb! I've been searching the posts here for some time and this place is chock full of good stuff.

My name is Dave Ray, Oxford, MS, and some old WW2 reenacting friends and myself are attempting to start up a Canadian unit (Loyal Edmonton Regt., 1st Inf. Div.) here in the SE US.

I had a couple of questions about the issue of BD. Someone posted on here that BD was usually issued around October. Wen was it turned back in? Would the 1st Infantry Division have deployed to NW Europe in 1945 wearing the BD they were issued in Italy ?

We have lots of questions! One of our guys has experience doing British, and I was a German panzergrenadier for many years.

Again, this is a wonderful forum, and it does the memory of the men and women who served in the war a great justice!

Thanks,

Dave Ray
Oxford, MS
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Joined: April 5th, 2011, 12:46 pm

July 22nd, 2011, 9:10 pm #9

Hello again all!

Another question that we are hoping someone can help with: Is there any evidence to show that the Loyal Edmonton Regt. received any issues of British BD while in Italy. Again, we are working up reenactment unit guidelines.

Thanks!

Dave Ray
Oxford, MS
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Doug Townend
Doug Townend

July 22nd, 2011, 9:39 pm #10

According to reports of the Canadian supply organization, both Canadian and British BD was issued to Canadian troops in Italy. Some Cdn BD was issued to Brit troops.

DT.
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