Three Lions on a Tunic

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Wilhelm
Posts: 483
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 2:14 pm

Three Lions on a Tunic

Post by Wilhelm »

Most of you know that I do an impression of the British Free Corps.
I have looked at the few pictures that are available of the unit,
and I have discovered the following:

cap insignia
Some members wore the eagle on the front of the cap,
and some wore it on the side.
Both cloth and metal insignia was known to have been worn,
sometimes even mixed (Berry and Minchin are wearing metal sculls with cloth eagles).
Metal eagle on the side of the cap was worn by John Leister.
In EVERY picture the BFC men wear their caps pulled down on the right hand side,
not straight as is the German fashion!

trousers
Take a look at Berry and Minchin, it would seem that the seams are stitched in,
as is the modern British fashion! Does it seem like it to you?

Socks and shirt
Can anyone tell me what the colours were?

Image


Cheers, Bill

Wilhelm
Posts: 483
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 2:14 pm

Post by Wilhelm »

shirt details...

Image

Jon Das Reich

Post by Jon Das Reich »

Hi Bill,
looking at the picture of Berry and Minchin they look like they have non regulation socks as you know german issue sockes had 1-3 white rings denoting size. I would guess the colour of their socks are grey., their undershirts look like the grey woolen type that most dealers sell to reenactors.
Minchins sidearm looks like a PP or a PPK.
trouser seams could they have been ironed in?

axis sally
Posts: 332
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 10:14 am

Post by axis sally »

trouser seams could they have been ironed in?


Thank you for that comment Jon, that makes my job that bit easier :wink:

Liebe Grüße,
Beate

Wilhelm
Posts: 483
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 2:14 pm

Post by Wilhelm »

If the creases are ironed in, then I think they may have put soap on the inside before ironing to get that sharp effect?

It would seem that the post-war reports that say they were untidy layabouts was not true. They seem to be very smart indeed :wink:

bloody hell her indoors won't do my uniforms


Beate always pressed my RAF uniforms. One day on parade. about 1986, I got picked up for a creased shirt. The officer asked me what my excuse was, I replied that I did not have one, but he should ask the wife! :shock:

Cheers, Bill

Stigroadie

Post by Stigroadie »

There seems to be respect for what appear to be turncoats at best traitors perhaps. Disturbing? What's to re-enact? Swanning about having your photo taken for propaganda shots?

Jon Das Reich

Post by Jon Das Reich »

I think it was a case of some joined because of their nazi views others for a better life compared to being in a pow camp others for means to escape, other because they were easily led.

Wilhelm
Posts: 483
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 2:14 pm

Post by Wilhelm »

Stigroadie wrote:
There seems to be respect for what appear to be turncoats at best traitors perhaps. Disturbing?


My reason for reenacting BFC is because I live in Germany, and all the German units contain REAL Germans!
Being a born Brit, BFC allows me to reenact Axis forces within Germany, and remain authentic.

Another reason that I may be pro-BFC.... I am a friend of Katie Minchin :wink:

What's to re-enact? Swanning about having your photo taken for propaganda shots?


I think I can manage that! :wink:

Cheers, Bill

axis sally
Posts: 332
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 10:14 am

Post by axis sally »

Whether the BFC were traitors or just opportunists, the descision is yours! All I can say is, that it is a subject that at least in Germany is very little known and from that perspective reenacting BFC would be educational, just as much as reenacting "Azad Hind", but I am afraid we won´t find too many Indian reenactors over here :wink:


Liebe Grüße,
Beate

Jon Das Reich

Post by Jon Das Reich »

In the UK no one minds seeing a Charlemagne or Nederland tunic because these foreign volunteer units didnt come from the UK unlike the BFC who are looked on as traitors here in the UK.
I would guess other foreign volunteer units get the same cold shoulder in the own countries also.

Wilhelm
Posts: 483
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2006 2:14 pm

Post by Wilhelm »

I would guess other foreign volunteer units get the same cold shoulder in the own countries also.

Well said Jon, that is how it is.

In Germany you can reenact WW2 British Army, but "10th Comandoes" would not go down too well, because it contained German volunteers! :shock:

In Holland, the talk is about perhaps allowing Waffen-SS at certain private events, well at least it is being discussed. But no "Nederland volunteer" units in Holland.

Cheers, Bill

Cookie
Posts: 171
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2006 2:38 pm
Location: Warwickshire

Post by Cookie »

Stigroadie,

You make comments about people reenacting the BFC, who you referred to as 'traitors' and you wonder why anyone would want to reenact them?

Devils advocate - Look at this from the third person:

YOU reenact an AXIS unit which was GERMAN! Why would anyone British want to reenact a unit of the German army which did its very best to kill and destroy ALLIED soldiers during the war?! Hipocracy! At least Bill is reenacting a unit of Brits!!

I don't, personally, have any problems whatsoever with reenacting German units W-SS, Army, LW etc. I have a 33rd SS Charlemagne uniform and a 10th SS Frundsberg uniform - neither causes me any sleepless nights.
Mark A - AFRA
Image

Stigroadie

Post by Stigroadie »

Only asking a question, but lets make it clear, I was not suggesting that anyone re-enacting BFC was/is a traitor, but that the original members may have been.
What the original members of the BFC did and what we do now are so far removed that it's almost stupid to discuss the 2 in the same breath. There is no comparison. What I choose to re-enact, which includes British and American, is not really the issue. The units I chose were more down to the people and personalities involved with the groups than with any ideologies or politics they or I may have held. The average German Landser was a conscript, as was his opposite, when in combat, I'm told, the last thing you fight for are statesmen and ideals. I asked Bill why he chose this unit, there is not much scope for re-enacting beyond swanning about. I dont think they were ever in combat, more of a PR stunt?
Were these men traitors? I think by definition they most likely were, I'm sure there have been thousands of words written on the subject. Were they taking advantage of an opertunity? Again given the choice of PoW camp and a nice uniform and degree of freedom, not hard to choose? But that is not a defence against a charge of treason. In time of war to change sides and wear the uniform of the enemy, treason? Whatever your motive it still looks like a wrong turn. When they put on the uniform of another nation are they still considered Brits, they have turned their back on the country of their birth and adopted the colours of another. I find it hard to have respect for these people. I'm allowed this opinion because the good people of this and other freedom seeking nations defeated the Nazi/axis threat, just as you are entitled to yours, a threat that a very small number of British soldiers chose to support.
I'm not saying it's wrong to re-enact BFC, I wouldn't but again we have the choice. It is only dressing up isnt it? The political disclaimers most German groups have in their constitutions are for real?

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