W.R.N.S.WW11 Hand Carved Oak Plaque
We have an old friend in the antiques trade who would often describe a special items of stock as ‘a belter’! This hand carve Women's Royal Naval Service oak plaque we feel would fall into this category. This is clearly a one off lovingly carved from a single lump of English oak with the fouled anchor, naval crown and W.R.N.S logo cut in relief. The image is set off by a fine depiction of a little wren sitting astride the anchor ring. What makes this shield even more special is on the back the original owner has cut into the wood the establishments she has served on so we have her complete WW11 postings. Firstly she served on HMS Wasp between August 1942 to November 1944. HMS Wasp was a Coastal Forces shore establishment at Dover during World War II. Then in November ’44 she transferred to HMS Midge where she served until May 1945. Midge was another Coastal Forces base at Great Yarmouth with responsibility for M.T.B’s, Motor gun boats and Mine Layers. Next she served on HMS Westcliffe from May to September 1945. Westcliffe was a Combined Operations Training Establishments in WW2 at Burnham on Crouch mainly holding landing craft which were primarily concerned with preparing allied forces for the amphibious invasion of North Africa and mainland Europe. Her final posting was to HMS Rosneath in September 1945. Rosneath was a secret base in Scotland and was covertly used by the USN even before America joined the war. The base was handed back to the Royal Navy in June ’45 and finally closed in 1948. Our anonymous Wren never engraved when she left what appears to have been her final posting. and sadly as the plaque is not named and the history of the owner has now been lost. It may be possible however with the very specific dates detailed in may just be possible to identify her. She certainly made a very full contribution the Second World War. To conclude as we started the plaque is ‘a belter’ and this unique piece of WW11 history would sit very happily in any WRENS or Royal Navla related collection. Measures 7.5” x 5.75” (19cm x 15 cm.) Please check out the other WRNS brass plaque relating to HMS Ganges we have also just listed on line.