The British Army’s Home Service Helmet was introduced in 1878. It was of a German influence and would replace a long line of shakos going back to the days of the Peninsular War and Waterloo. In blue cloth, sometimes green, sometime grey, sometimes with a spike, sometimes with a ball, the stiff cork headdress would become a common site on parade grounds throughout Britain for more than thirty years. Most Regular Army regiments and corps took to the helmet, as did their Militia, Volunteer and Territorial counterparts.
With the new headdress came the helmet plate, those highly desirable items of militaria much sought after today by collectors. Large, star-shaped mostly and displaying both ancient and new regimental devices, brightly they shone in their silvers, gilts, gilding and white metals, covering almost the entire front of the headdress as they did so.
By drawing on official records such as Dress Regulations (those for the years 1883, 1891, 1894, 1900, 1904 and 1911 in particular) Ray Westlake has in this ‘Guide’ been able to provide a comprehensive account of the helmet plates, (together with their variations) worn by Regular Army officers. For other ranks, the Militia, Volunteers and Territorial forces, more than 200 volumes have also been consulted
GUIDE TO THE BRITISH HOME SERVICE HELMET AND ITS BADGES 1878 – 1914
A Guide to the British Home Service Helmet and its Badges, 1878-1914, comes complete with some 419 illustrations of actual helmets, helmet plates and people wearing them. Good quality photographs, along with artwork provided by leading military artists such as Richard Simkin, Harry Payne, Ernest Ibbetson, Edgar Holloway, PW Reynolds, Frank Feller, Frank Dadd and Richard Caton Woodville.