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New Stock Listing

This page lists any stock that has been added in the last 60 days, together with any "Featured" items in stock.
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Reference Stock Item   Description Price
5239 RAF Corporal's War Service Dress Blouse and Trousers - Click for the bigger picture New Stock RAF Corporal's War Service Dress Blouse and Trousers - First issued exclusively to aircrew in 1941 it was originally referred to as ‘Suit, Blue Grey, Aircrews ‘ but it was subsequently issued to all and became universally known as “Battledress”. This very fine example of the type is a matched suit made by Sindall Bros & Co Ltd and carries a broad arrow stamp with a label dated 1945, so it just caught the latter stages of WW11. It is in virtually unissued condition although seeing Corporal rank stripes and medal ribbon it has clearly been issued and used although sadly it is not named, so any associated history has now been lost. The Medal ribbon show the 1939-45 Star, Africa Star, Defence Medal and War Medal (1939-45) were awarded to the original owner.

The Blouse is in fantastic condition with fine Corporal’s stripes to each arm and oblong shoulder titles above. The fabric of blouse is exceptionally clean and more or less factory fresh and no other damage or marks ; the waist band is WD and Broad arrow stamped as well as the code letter 'Z' indicating 1945 issue. The matching trousers, which carry the same makers label so have not been mismatched like many of the suits we see. They are equally clean but have a few small moth nibbles but on display these hardly notice. The field dressing pocket to the front is of the later simplified button closure type. The suit is marked size 7 with the tunic indicating suitable for height 5’ 7”-5’8”, breast 35”-36” and waist 31”. The matching trousers are marked for the same height and waist with the seat marked as 36”-37” and leg measurement 30 ½”.

Despite the minor moth damage to the trousers this example is well above the average for a 1945 dated BD suit and wartime examples are becoming increasingly hard to source now in any condition. This would make the ideal example for a mannequin display but would also be strong enough to wear for re enactment purposes, if you should just happen to be of modest proportions! As with all our stock more detailed photographs are available on request.

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5139 Coveralls, Mens, Cotton Drill, White - Click for the bigger picture Reserved Coveralls, Mens, Cotton Drill, White - We are unsure of the origins of this suit although we have been told a small quantity were discovered in South Africa some time ago and this may be from that source. It is in the style of the pre-war RAF 'Prestige suit', popular with well heeled pilots in the early years of WW 11 including the Battle of Britain. The suit is made from white cotton with a fully buttoned front, flapped pleated chest pockets and side entry pockets at the waist. Interestingly the white buttons are removeable via split rings in the same way as original Prestige Suits and RAF Khaki Drill uniforms, to aid washing. It is fitted with a cotton waist belt with a chrome finished buckle. The suit does not carry a makers label but we would estimate it would fit a person with about a 38" chest, a 32" waist and up to 5'10" in height. We are happy to check individual measurements and like all our stock additional detail photographs are available on request.

This style of suit was also worn by racing drivers and pit mechanics and with appropriate accessories would form the basis of an outfit for a 1940’s event, re-enactment the the Goodwood Revival or dressed on a mannequin for display purposes. Original Prestige Suits are now into four figures (if you can find one!) and decent replicas are well over £100. This one is rather more modestly priced! It is in excellent condition but has clearly had light use, with the odd surface marks and minor rust stains. It could of course be washed but we have left it just as it came in as we believe, as it stands, this adds a touch of period authenticity.

Wd also have fresh in a very small selection of super qulity replica WW11 RAF bullion Squadron badge that if attached to the front breast pocket would set the suit off perfectly. Details and prices on request.

6278 RAF Gloves, Flying, Gauntlet, Type D - Click for the bigger picture Reserved RAF Gloves, Flying, Gauntlet, Type D - A virtually mint set, finished in soft chestnut leather with a wool lining. These are of a straight pull on pattern and formed part of the ‘D’ series electrically heated system and when issued were used in conjunction with rayon inner liners. Later in WW11 when the heating aspect became less important they were often used alone or with silk inners. This set (which is for the outers only) shows a slight colour variation between the left and right glove, as is normally the case as a result of the gloves being made in different factories and paired up when issued to avoid pilferage. Both carry good clear labels with the left glove carrying stores reference 22C/768 and the right 22C/771. Interestingly despite these references indicating a pair of size 9 gloves the labels have been modified by hand to indicate size 9 ½ and certainly the fit seems to indicate the larger size. The labels are also A.M. marked with Kings Crown, contract numbers and AID inspectors stamps. Like all our kit, whilst these are offered for sale as collectables, seeing the pristine condition we see no reason why they can not be used for the intended purpose, for re-enactment or for classic motoring. They certainly meet the collectors maxim ‘always buy the best you can afford’! Further pictures are available on request to show the full detail described.  
Reference Stock Item   Description Price
5633 WRAF Officer Service Dress Cap - Click for the bigger picture New Stock WRAF Officer Service Dress Cap - An excellent early post war example of an Officers pattern Women’s Royal Air Force SD cap that are becoming increasingly difficult to find. This one is particularly interesting as sewn inside the plastic covering the makers label is a name card detailing the original owner as Flight Officer F.H.Wilson and below Womens Royal Air Force. This more or less covers the makers label but from the small part we can see we believe indicates the cap was made by Moss Bros of Covent Garden, London.

We have carried out limited research on the original owner and it seems possible she served during WW11 as we have identified a WAAF Corporal F.H.Wilson who was notified as being wounded in action by Communique 436 and this was reconfirmed by an entry in ‘Flight’ of 26th August 1944. She then surfaces again on 22nd May 1950 as Flying Officer Wilson service number 2089639, when she was appointed as Assistant to the Provost Marshall. In November 1956,she is still assisting the Provost Marshall of the RAF. This position was first created in 1920, and had responsibility for the RAF Police; by the end of WWII, the strength of the RAF had reached 1.2 million personnel and the RAF Police had 500 commissioned officers, including 55 from the WAAF. Our research indicated the position was held by Air Commodore H. J. G. E. Proud from 1954 – 1956 and he was succeeded by Commodore W. I. G Kerby who became Provost Marshall during 1956, so both would have been Flight Officer Wilson’s Boss 63 years ago. Her final promotion, still in the Provost Branch, is dated 1st January 1958 when she took the rank of Flight Office and she finally retitred from the RAF on 25th June 1963.

In view of the promtions detailed above and the rank shown on the label this cap would appear to date from around 1958 but despite its age it remains in remakably good issued condition. The cloth is generally very clean, with just a minor snag under the visor. The cap band carries a period Kings Crown RAF badge, showing minor age wear, as do the chin strap retaining buttons. Inside the lining shows normal wear, as you would expect. No size is marked but the physical measurement taken inside the hat band is 21 ¼” circumference or 54 cm. In summary this is an early post war example in above the average condition and with the added benefit of known provenance that is worthy of further research.

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6679 Royal Naval Air Service WW1 Flying Filter Goggles - Click for the bigger picture New Stock Royal Naval Air Service WW1 Flying Filter Goggles - Probably the scarcest pattern of all aviator googles from any period worldwide. It is believed very few were made and it has been speculated they may never have developed further than the experimental stage and so few have survived today that most museums do not have a set on display. The only other example we have been able to locate is part of the Yale Peabody Museum’s collection in the US. When Mick Prodger published his classic reference work ‘Vintage Fling Helmets’ he was unable to source a set for inclusion. It is understood they were experimental when first issued to Royal Naval Air Service pilots in about 1917. Each set was contained within a custom made wooden case that held 8 pairs of coloured lenses (or officially designated “light filters”) that were intended to assist with locating and spotting enemy ships and submarines from the air under different conditions. Some were for looking through haze, whilst others were for spotting oil on the surface of the water, or again for locating U Boat shadows under the water or even enemy gun flashed over the trenches, where RNAS pilots served with distinction alongside their RFC colleagues. The set when issued included an instruction manual giving directions for use and the most appropriate filters to use depending on operational area and prevailing light conditions.

This superb example is complete and despite being over 100 years old appears to be in unissued condition. They were discovered in a building close to Kalafrana on the southernmost tip of Malta, which was a seaplane base between 1917 and 1946, when it was transferred to the Royal Navy. In WW11 RAF Kalafrana was home to 228 Squadron flying Sunderland’s and remained in use until the 1960’s. Clearly these are the flying goggles that time forgot, until recently re discovered. The booklet shows some aging and the staples are rusted but is still readable and indicates a print date of December 1917. Seeing the historical value of the booklet and its somewhat tender state we have had a very convincing replica reprinted that can be read without fear of damaging the original and both are included within the grouping. The original wooden transit box is sound and as well as the two pairs of filters currently fitted to the goggles it comes with a further 6 filters thus making up the full se. Each pair of filters is numbered and whilst showing some age related wear and fading it is amazing they have survived at all. The goggles themselves are virtually mint and the tan leather is still soft and pliable; the cloth bound edge is fur lined and remains pristine, as are the face pads. The olive drab fabric backstrap is complete but has lost its elasticity over the last 100 years and now needs to be handled carefully; this would have been secured behind the users head by means of a ring and hook arrangement.

It is staggering these goggles have survived at all for over 100 years and this set is undoubtedly a museum quality item that rarely, if ever, appears for sale on the collectors market. As with all our stock additional photographs are available on request to enable you to check out the detail for yourself as described.

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Reference Stock Item   Description Price
5159 Royal Naval Air Service Memorial Plaque Vermelles - Click for the bigger picture Reserved Royal Naval Air Service Memorial Plaque Vermelles - Vermelles village lies around three miles south of Cuinchyin in northern France and was a hot-spot in WW1. In “Goodbye to All That” Robert Graves describes the village as having been "taken and retaken eight times by October 1914”. When Graves was billeted there in June 1915 he records that ‘not a single house remained undamaged’, being then only ¾ of a mile from the front line. The proximity of Vermelles to the fighting resulted in casualties being buried in small clusters in the village. The War Graves Cemetery at Vermelles was begun in August 1915 and continued in operation during 1916 but from April 1917 to the Armistice, the cemetery was closed. Following the Armistice some graves were re-grouped and others were brought in from the battlefields to the East; today 2134 WW1 casualties rest at peace at Vermelles under the watchful and caring eyes of the War Graves Commission

Our plaque clearly originates from the mid war period as it features the specific dates when the cemetery at Vermelles was in active use during 1915 & 1916. To the top of the shield is a finely worked RNAS eagle and below a stone cross, possibly made from marble. The shield itself is oak and is clearly hand carved and is safe to assume this was made in theatre as a piece of trench art. Surprisingly it is not named to an individual and we can only assume it was created as a tribute by a serving member of the RNAS to his fallen colleagues buried at Vermelles. Often overlooked, the RNAS fought with distinction and valour on all fronts during WW1, pioneering many aspects of aerial warfare, winning two Victoria Crosses and leading the way in innovation and endeavour. Naval Air Squadrons flew alongside the Royal Flying Corps in combat over the trenches, making an important contribution to the Western Front air war. At its height in WW1, the RNAS had 55,000 personnel, 3000 aircraft and 103 airships operating in theatre.

Royal Naval Air Service memorabilia hardly ever comes to market and despite it's specific origins being lost down the year this emotive memorial plaque was clearly skilfully worked by unknown hands over 100 years ago to honour fallen colleagues of the Naval Air Service. Very much a one off and not to be repeated. It retains an original hanging ring to the rear so ideal for wall display. Measures 10.25" x 8” (26cm x20.5cm)

5566 607 County of Durham Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force Plaque - Click for the bigger picture New Stock 607 County of Durham Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force Plaque - 607 Squadron was formed on 17 March 1930 at RAF Usworth, County Durham, as a day bomber unit of the Auxiliary Air Force flying Westland Wapitis. In September 1936 the role of 607 was changed into that of a fighter squadron.

Equipped with Gladiators, 607 was deployed to France as the Air Component of the British Expeditionary Force in November 1939 and fought in the Battle of France. In March 1940, the squadron was re-equipped with the Hawker Hurricane and following the British 'withdrawal', the squadron returned to it's home base of Usworth but was subsequently relocated to RAF Tangmere in September 1940. The squadron took an active role in the Battle of Britain, but at a cost, losing 26 of its pilots. In October 1941, they transferred to RAF Manston and remained there until 1942 when it transferred to India with Mk V111 Spitfires replacing Hurricane’s in 1944. The Squadron was disbanded in Burma in August 1945 but reformed in May 1946, at RAF Ouston in Northumberland as a day fighter squadron of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force. After flying Spitfires for five years, it converted to Vampire Jets in October 1950 and was disbanded again on 10 March 1957.

Sadly we know nothing of the origins or age of this plaque other than it is a hand painted one of item and not commercially made. The board on which the plaque is painted has clearly been wall mounted at some stage in its life. The crest shows a Kings Crown and below a winged lion salient; surrounding the lion is the script 607 (County of Durham) Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force ; 607 chose not to have a motto. The varnished board measures 20 ¼” x 17 ¼” (51 cm x 44 cm). 607 served with distinction in the Battle of France and the Battle of Britain and also had Battle honours for Rakhine, Manipur and the Burma campaign 1944–45 before disbanding. Both the plaque and board show age related wear but still makes an impressive statement, aided by the Squadrons significant part in the Battle of Britain.

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5292 RAF Fazakerley Ephemera and Photographs - Click for the bigger picture New Stock RAF Fazakerley Ephemera and Photographs - A modest but interesting grouping! We have struggled to find much on RAF Fazakerley on line other than the name ‘Fazakerley’ comes from the Anglo-Saxon words ‘faes’, meaning border or fringe, ‘aecer’ meaning field and 'lea', meaning a clearing in a wood. Situated near Liverpool the Fazakerley family were the main landowners in the area, and took their name from the township. Clearly Liverpool was severely bombed in the Blitz and the camp at RAF Fazakerley, located at Field Lane, was certainly functioning as a base for No 8 Barrage Balloon Centre, in August 1940 and supported 6 flights and 8 balloons. A Royal Ordinance Factory was located close by and we suspect they had a busy war!

The grouping is made up of a hand painted card marked Royal Air Force, a Kings Crown and laurel leaf crest and Fazakerley below, picked out in yellow paint. Inside is a period wartime black and white picture of an RAF Sergeant smoking a pipe, with a wireless operator trade badge to his right shoulder The card is dedicated inside with a hand written ‘Best Wishes to all’ and a signature we have been unable to decipher. The Sgt has an impressive medal bar and we believe he may also have served in WW1.

The other plain card mount contains a further photograph of we believe the same gent, also with pipe and the back is dedicated ‘Many Happy memories’ and behind the photo the card is dated 10th September 1940 and is signed Cpl Lavender, although again we are not entirely sure as the handwritting is hard to decipher. This photograph, clearly taken before he got his extra stripe, indicates a blackboard with Morse code detail so we assume at this stage he was teaching Morse to RAF radio operators. This is confirmed by two large more keys being located on the table Infront of him.

Worthy of further research and a snap shot (literally!) from the Battle of Britain period from a little heard of RAF station of WW11.

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Reference Stock Item   Description Price
5212 A Genuine Post War RAF Ensign ( and a few words of warning!) - Click for the bigger picture New Stock A Genuine Post War RAF Ensign ( and a few words of warning!) - Many in the RAF collecting fraternity may also have noticed the plethora of “ Battle of Britain RAF 1940 dated airfield flags” that are cropping up on a weekly basis for sale on that well known online auction site. I and many of our dealer/collector colleagues hate to see the public being apparently convinced to part with their hard earned funds on modern fakes masquerading as the real deal. So a few timely words of warning.

The extremely limited number of genuine wartime RAF ensigns we have had here over the years very rarely have decipherable stampings and even less have clear dates as these have generally faded through use in the elements or washed out over the years. The ones that do retain decipherable stampings tend to be Broad Arrow property marked not A.M. and we have never yet seen a wartime flag with the town of origin, as were this to happen this would have simply been a calling card for Hermann Göring’s crews. The fakes currently seem to favour Sheffield or Oxford as the fictitious places of origin for some unknown reason. Other tell tail signs are wartime ensigns were made with overlaid pieces of cotton fabric stitched together not simply screen printed. They carried coir rope with brass Inglefield clips to attach to the flag mast not white nylon. Generally these fakes look too fresh although the latest batch are being roughed up and dirtied to make them look more authentic. We also see other ensigns being offered including the ultimate rarity “WW1 RAF 5 feet long RFC royal flying corps airfield linen flag dated 1918”. In a lifetime of collecting I have yet to handle a genuine RFC ensign. Please note the sellers are cleverly not saying these items were made back then they are just ‘dated 1940’ which may be a slight of hand but might just protect them from litigation. Today as we write this listing several examples are on offer with a ‘1940’ example already having attracted 30 bids and currently at £225.00 Can we politely suggest if you have bid or are even slightly tempted by such a listing to first get in touch with the seller and ask him to categorically guarantee in writing the item is a genuine RAF/RFC period ensign and not a modern copy. Never has “Caveat emptor” or "Let the buyer beware" been more applicable. If it looks too good to be true it probably is…….

Oh yes we nearly forgot. Whilst this listing is mainly to ‘flag’ (pun intended!) the dangers of this fraudulent activity we are also prepared to sell this Guaranteed GENUINE 1991 dated RAF issue station ensign. It was not made in Oxford or Sheffield but by quality manufactures Zephyr Flags & Banners of Thrapston(established in 1969) in Northants. It carries the RAF stores reference code 6345-99-125-1140 and a Broad Arrow property mark. It is a large size at 8’ x 4’ (244 cm x 122 cm). It is made to the correct post WW11 specification with a printed roundel and union flag against an air force blue cotton background. It has a nylon line attached and is fitted with brass Inglefield clips. We would love to say it was used at Biggin Hill or Debden but sadly we can’t. It appears to be in virtually unflown condition. "You pays your money and takes your choice" but if this listing saves any collector wasting money on fakery and fraud we have achieved a minor victory today!

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1741 Air Ministry First Aid Outfit Aircraft - Click for the bigger picture New Stock Air Ministry First Aid Outfit Aircraft - In near mint and unissued condition, with just very minor storage marks. Made from olive green cotton, with a satchel type flap cover which seals via means of a webbing strap and brass buckle. The outside of the flap is stamped “FIRST AID OUTFIT /AIRCRAFT" whilst inside is marked with a crisp Kings Crown with AM below followed by the makers details “ H.B.Curtis & Son Ltd 1941”. These packs were carried in ‘heavies’ of Bomber Command and Coastal Command and the number of kits supplied depending on the number of aircrew aboard. An identical but issued example is featured on page 109 of Mick Prodger’s excellent ‘Luftwaffe V RAF flying Equipment’ reference book.

Whilst this example is empty the original contents, as confirmed by the Imperial War Museum, was made up of : 4 morphine dosage labels, 1 shell dressing,4 ampoules of morphine in tins, 2 triangular bandages, 2 tourniquets & shell dressings, water sterilizing kit, boracic lint, 2 hand envelopes & burn dressing for fingers, r 3 tubes anti-burn/anti sunburn cream, safety pin, phial of aspirin & phial of chalk, opium tablets, phial of cathartic tablets, phial of quinine tablets and an & iodine ampoule box. So despite its small size 8” x 8”x 4” (20cm x 20cm x 10cm) it would have provided essential aid to injured aircrew. The case also has provision for a shoulder strap but in this instance this has not been fitted. The interior has a number of dedicated pouches to store the various component parts, so they could be quickly brought to hand when needed. With packing it displays well as it is but could form the basis of a completed pack if time, budget and patience allow.

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Reference Stock Item   Description Price
4289 Air Warden Bakelite Door Plaque - Click for the bigger picture New Stock Air Warden Bakelite Door Plaque - An original British Home front sign from the Second World War. Air Raid Precautions Warden’s (ARP’s) provided the backbone of Britain’s civil defence operations and was formed in 1935 when storm clouds were already gathering in Europe. They provided an essential service during the Blitz and throughout the dark days of the War. The Air Raid Warden had to be easily identifiable so as well as his ARP badge homes were normally marked to indicate where the local warden could be contacted in an emergency.

Several different types existed made from aluminium, enamel or as this example in Bakelite. This would have probably been attached to an inside door within a larger building or industrial concern that warranted its own warden. In a market that is now seeing reproductions being offered this is a guaranteed period example, with evidence beside the fixing holes to show where it has been removed from a door, by an unknown hand long ago. This is an iconic Home Front collectable from the era in good original condition with minor fading & discolouration to brown Bakelite and little paint loss to lettering, exactly in line with age, use and storage over the preceding 80 years. The plaque was purchased in Bristol, a west country City that suffered an absolute pounding in the Bristol Blitz from November 1940 to April 1941 and as we so often say here “if it could only talk it would certainly have a story to tell”! The plaque measures 6” x 3” (15cm X 7.5cm).

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