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  #1  
Old 15-12-20, 04:25 AM
Eagle Squadron Eagle Squadron is offline
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Default Early Parachute Wings (1941)

Did the early (circa 1941) British Parachute Wings have a black cloth backing? Can anyone post a photo of an original pair?
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  #2  
Old 15-12-20, 11:35 AM
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3battalion 3battalion is online now
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Hello Eagle Squadron,

Welcome to the forum.

Early para wings were issued on khaki and black backings in a rectangle shape. There was no significance to the backing colour, it was just how the wings were produced by the manufacture. In 1940-41, official correspondence was issued stating that the wings were to be issued on a khaki background, however wings continued to be produced on black backing. The wings were sometimes applied to the uniform in the rectangle shape and also trimmed down.

Attached is an early wing on a black ground that has been trimmed down and padded.

I hope this helps.

Paul
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File Type: jpg Ind 9..jpg (81.2 KB, 75 views)
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  #3  
Old 15-12-20, 03:20 PM
tcrown tcrown is offline
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As Paul said, the color of the backing is not an indication of early wings.
Check this out https://www.britishbadgeforum.com/fo...ad.php?t=80666
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  #4  
Old 15-12-20, 07:19 PM
Arnhem Jim Arnhem Jim is offline
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Default Early Parachute Wings

Hello Eagle Squadron,
You might be interested in a glance at the following blog article I wrote a few months ago with tcrown's significant assistance; https://arnhemjim.blogspot.com/2020/...-wings-of.html .
Arnhem Jim
Arizona Territory

Last edited by Arnhem Jim; 15-12-20 at 07:24 PM.
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  #5  
Old 15-12-20, 11:29 PM
Mike B Mike B is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arnhem Jim View Post
Hello Eagle Squadron,
You might be interested in a glance at the following blog article I wrote a few months ago with tcrown's significant assistance; https://arnhemjim.blogspot.com/2020/...-wings-of.html .
Arnhem Jim
Arizona Territory
Excellent article - thanks to you both - excellent illustrations.
I am a bit confused though as I thought the 'cloud' pattern canopy (as attached images) was the first issue wing - any elaboration appreciated.
Regards
Mike
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Old 16-12-20, 02:54 AM
tcrown tcrown is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike B View Post
Excellent article - thanks to you both - excellent illustrations.
I am a bit confused though as I thought the 'cloud' pattern canopy (as attached images) was the first issue wing - any elaboration appreciated.
Regards
Mike
Thanks Mike. I have added a post as promised re the 'cloud' type in my 'early wings' original thread.
Cheers
Pierre
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  #7  
Old 16-12-20, 09:53 AM
Mike B Mike B is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcrown View Post
Thanks Mike. I have added a post as promised re the 'cloud' type in my 'early wings' original thread.
Cheers
Pierre
Many thanks Pierre - just read it now and much appreciate your thoughts on the matter. A very useful guide. Regards - Mike
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  #8  
Old 16-12-20, 01:19 PM
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Here's an uncut wing on a black backing.
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  #9  
Old 16-12-20, 01:40 PM
Farang Farang is offline
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Default Early para wings on dark backings

Parachute wings on dark blue and black backings were produced circa 1941 but so far as I am aware the significance of this is not known. Some examples are attached.

151 Battalion wore wings on a black background which was said to be a tribute to the high incidence of fatal accidents while establishing a parachute capability. They were raised in October 1941 so would also fit within an early classification date.

Best regards,
Andy
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File Type: jpg Badges July 18th 2013 110.jpg (52.2 KB, 26 views)
File Type: jpg Badges July 18th 2013 113.jpg (52.2 KB, 21 views)
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  #10  
Old 16-12-20, 04:26 PM
Colin S Colin S is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Farang View Post
Parachute wings on dark blue and black backings were produced circa 1941 but so far as I am aware the significance of this is not known. Some examples are attached.

151 Battalion wore wings on a black background which was said to be a tribute to the high incidence of fatal accidents while establishing a parachute capability. They were raised in October 1941 so would also fit within an early classification date.

Best regards,
Andy
When 151 Bn moved returned from India to the UK and became 156 Bn they were issued standard khaki backed wings but some officers sewed them onto a black backing to perpetuate this tradition.
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Old 17-12-20, 04:14 AM
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Here is another early para wing on a black background, trimmed and worn but similar in construction to Luc's untrimmed example above.

Stay well,
Donovan
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  #12  
Old 17-12-20, 08:45 AM
Eagle Squadron Eagle Squadron is offline
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Thanks gentlemen for the links and educational responses.
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  #13  
Old 17-12-20, 11:46 AM
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the black background of 151/151 Parachute Battalion qualification wings being attributed to parachute training fatalities is a bit of a red herring. a good few years ago in conversation with Tony Thomas, CQMS, MID, retired Maj.(QM) Para.Regt. who was with the battalion during the war stated that the black background was the result of a " production problem " ( cock up ) with the local Indian manufacturer/supplier of kit. might as well use them up while we've got them. tradition ensues. however, this is only hearsay.
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  #14  
Old 17-12-20, 01:52 PM
Colin S Colin S is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverwash View Post
the black background of 151/151 Parachute Battalion qualification wings being attributed to parachute training fatalities is a bit of a red herring. a good few years ago in conversation with Tony Thomas, CQMS, MID, retired Maj.(QM) Para.Regt. who was with the battalion during the war stated that the black background was the result of a " production problem " ( cock up ) with the local Indian manufacturer/supplier of kit. might as well use them up while we've got them. tradition ensues. however, this is only hearsay.
In an earlier thread on 156 Bn wings, Postwarden very helpfully pointed out that the 1943 Indian clothing regulations described the wing background as being black but the 1945 regs said ‘dark blue’, so the Indian made wings were as per their regulations. No doubt 156 Bn perpetuated this to celebrate their India origins and make them stand out - the story about commemorating the casualties sounds like it was told to justify this choice.
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