Colour of beret 1'st. Royal Dragoons spring 45?

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Hosted by John Prigent and Steve Zaloga, this is a discussion group dedicated to the armoured forces of the many Allied nations of the Second World War.

Colour of beret 1'st. Royal Dragoons spring 45?

Joined: April 29th, 2005, 11:07 am

July 9th, 2012, 2:22 pm #1

What colour would the beret used by the British 1st. Royal Dragoons be, in the spring of 1945?

Dan
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Joined: April 18th, 2005, 11:30 am

July 9th, 2012, 2:44 pm #2

Officers: Grey, ORs: Black
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Joined: April 29th, 2005, 11:07 am

July 9th, 2012, 10:30 pm #3

Thanks, but what kind of grey.

Dan
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Joined: June 25th, 2005, 2:52 am

July 10th, 2012, 12:13 am #4

What colour would the beret used by the British 1st. Royal Dragoons be, in the spring of 1945?

Dan
According to the regimental history, "The Story of the Royal Dragoons, 1938-1945" by J.A. Pitt-Rivers:

Pg.7, just after mechanization in Egypt:
"One final but by no means unimportant aspect of the conversion was concerned with the regimental head-dress. It was characteristic of Colonel Heyworth's approach to mechanisation that from the first moment when it was projected he had decided that the Royal Dragoons should wear berets. Certain cavalry regiments retained the peaked forage cap of cavalry days for their officers while the men wore the side-hat or the black beret which was later to become the prescribed head-dress of the Royal Armoured Corps but was still at that time the insignia of the Royal Tank Regiment. The 11th Hussars wore a brown beret with a ribbon of their regimental maroon. Colonel Heyworth chose a grey beret and ordered furthermore that the regimental badge should revert to the Napoleonic eagle, which had been replaced by the lion and garter during the 1914-18 War. The senior Ordnance Officer, Middle East, agreed to the fabrication of the grey berets, pending the necessary authorisation, and the cost of the initial issue was born by the regimental funds. The story of the grey beret illustrates well one of the fundamental changes which were taking place within the British army during the period with which this history deals; the struggle of a regiment to retain its individual tradition against the demands for uniformity of the Army Council, but this will be told later on."

Pg. 95-96, in England prior to D-Day;
"During this period the Regiment was inspected by the Colonel of the Regiment, Brigadier-General Sir Ernest Makins, who addressed the assembled squadrons, beginning his speech with the traditional title 'Gentlemen Dragoons'. It was a matter of regret to him to see them no longer in the grey beret but in black, for on their return to England the War Office regulations regarding their dress had to be enforced. For years men of all ranks paid hard cash for this honour, while the War Office refused to sanction it, and no more than one man had ever complained (and he relented afterwards and asked to be allowed to buy one). When General Sir Bernard Montgomery returned to England and took command of the 21st Army Group, he wrote a strong letter to the Adjutant-General submitting that the Royal Dragoons must be allowed to wear their beret. But the Adjutant-General stood firm and General Montgomery wrote to the Colonel saying: 'I see I have been defeated in this battle, but I shall be pleasantly reminded of old times if the grey beret reappears on the Continent.' Supplies were so short, however, that only the officers were able to wear them in Europe and at the end of the war the Royal Dragoons went entirely into black."

also, check this link:
http://www.network54.com/Forum/47208/th ... s+insignia

All of my sources merely use the color grey - not dark, not light, not dove, not french. Dick Taylor, in the above link, says dark grey.

This is the only photo I could find, but it is of the modern Royal Scots Dragoons Guards and it was on e-bay so I can't say that it is not a fake. By any means, this is not proof of what the wartime color of the beret was, just something from which you can make an educated guess lacking any better info. You could try contacting the regimental museum to see if they can give you more info:


Sam Wren
Abilene, TX

"My cat may be able to telepathically control my mind, but he will never be able to play the piano." - unknown
Last edited by SamWren on July 10th, 2012, 2:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: July 16th, 2009, 11:00 pm

July 10th, 2012, 10:14 am #5

What colour would the beret used by the British 1st. Royal Dragoons be, in the spring of 1945?

Dan
If you want any cap badges for them there are 12 in each inside the armour 'British Armoured Regiment Cap Badges - Part 2' set

Its my company, I'm afraid I must confess a commercial interest

Chris

Inside the
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Joined: April 29th, 2005, 11:07 am

July 10th, 2012, 9:38 pm #6

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