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Aviation Collectables & Aviation Clothing - Stock Archive - Page 3

These are some of the SOLD items that have been listed on our website

There are a maximum of 20 items on each page - our most recent sale is listed first - this is now quite a large reference record. If you have a specific interest, use our keyword search to search the entire stock database.


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NewStock NEW STOCK In Stock IN STOCK Featured FEATURED Sold SOLD Sold - similar available SOLD - similar available  
Reference Stock Item   Description
6802
RAF First Aid Outfit For Air Crews Mk II - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF First Aid Outfit For Air Crews Mk II - These packs are becoming increasingly rare and few now turn up as crisp as this example. Designed to be carried by all aircrew in a designated pocket in their service or battledress uniform and were introduced following lessons learned during the Battle of Britain. Burns to aircrew were the most common types of injuries and the rubberised sealed canvas pack contained cotton bandages, ampoules, anti-burn Mitten impregnated with antiseptic ointment, anti-burn jelly in a 1oz tube, large wound dressings and safety pins.

The pouches were issued as a Mk I, 11 or 111 variant, this being a Mk II. The outside of the canvas is printed on both sides with a list of contents, as well as 'Pull to Open' and basic instructions for use. It also carries an AM stamp and King's Crown on both sides as well as the designation 'Mk II'. These pack was opened by tearing at the top corners via two tabs and of the limited number that have survived over the last 70+ years many if not most have been opened by inquisitive hands. This example remains in as issued and unopened condition with the full contents inside, although we have no way of telling the condition of the contents today. The canvas cover remains in virtually unmaked condition and all the writing remains clear and readable. Unopened examples are significantly more desirable and this one clearly matches the collectors maxim 'buy the best you can afford'. Dimensions: 5.75" x 5.75"x 1 1/2". (15 cm x 15 cm x 3 cm)

4479
Luftwaffe Gravy or Sauce Ladle - Click for the bigger picture SoldLuftwaffe Gravy or Sauce Ladle - Constructed from one piece of lightweight aluminium, the ladle has a central raised ridge on the handle and is well marked with an impressed Luftwaffe eagle. The reverse of the handle is marked with impressed manufacturers code, "H.M.Z. 39" indicating made by Arbeitsgemeinschaft Holz des Klingensthaler Bezirkes GmbH, Brunndoebra which was located close to the German / Czechoslovakia border. The date of manufacture was 1939. It is also stamped "Fl. U.V." indicating, 'Flieger Unterkunft Verwaltung', translated meaning 'Flight Barracks Administration'. Shows some service wear but generally very crisp and would have served throughout the Battle of Britain period. Measures 7.5" (19 cm)
6634
RAF Altimeter 6TM/9 - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Altimeter 6TM/9 - We are not entirely sure of the background to this instrument although the data plate on the reverse confirms it was made by Kollsman Instruments Ltd of Southampton. It also details Ref no 6TM/9 and 'Altimeter Synchrohotel'. On the side wall of the case is painted 'Barschle Adjusted 29.01.80'. The crisp dial is graduated in 1000 of feet with a subsidiary readout showing actual height. It also carries a further label confirming it has at some stage been repaired by Kollsman Instruments at The Airport, Southampton. Apologies for the vague description but we are sure the experts out there will know exactly what it is! Dial width 3.25" (8.5 cm)

OC316
Spitfire Radio Antennae Mast Replica - Click for the bigger picture SoldSpitfire Radio Antennae Mast Replica - On offer is a wooden replica of the radio mast fitted to the most iconic fighter of WWII. This example is a somewhat scaled down version of the original and measures 25 1/2" tall (65 cm). Finished in olive drab paint it provides an attractive display item at a fraction of the cost of an original!
6377
Luftwaffe LKp W101 Winter Flying Helmet - Click for the bigger picture SoldLuftwaffe LKp W101 Winter Flying Helmet - This model replaced the pre-war LKp W100 and whilst made to the same basic pattern it featured improved Siemens communications and better sound insulation. Instead of aluminium cups the earphones are housed in hard rubber cups covered with dark brown leather which had a more streamlined appearance and with an external recess at the top which helped secure the goggle straps in place. The avionics were also enhanced by the installation of a Perspex membranes inside the helmet between the cushioned fleece lining and the earphone speaker. The housing for the throat microphones on the LKp W101 was also improved with two straps containing the microphone linked by an inverted "T" at the nape of the helmet. This housing also served as the junction between the helmet's internal wiring and the long cord and plug-in connector. The throat straps were adjustable by means of two buckles, and once correctly adjusted could be joined together or removed at the front by means of a snap fastening.

On offer is a very fine example of the type, that appears to be in almost unissued condition. The leather shell is very soft and has virtually all its original factory finish intact, with just minor rubbing to the receiver housings. It has provision for using with a 3 point oxygen mask with an adjustable brow strap fitted. The metal parts are all excellent and the goggle and chin straps are absolutely mint. The earphones Perspex covers are undamaged and embossed Ln 26602. The helmet is fully wired and carries a long wiring cord with a 4 pin plug fitted marked BLKvFL 27560 and the round throat microphones are marked Mi 4c with manufacturers code bxo. Inside the helmet is equally clean with a full lambswool lining and with a sewn in label confirming the size is Gr 56, the model nos, and other detail which includes the manufacturer's code bxo, indicating it was made by Deutsche Telephonwerke und Kabelindustrie A.-G., Berlin SO 36. The label is not dated like some but we would estimate manufacture in the mid WWII period. It also features a good clear BAL ink stamp stands for Bauaufsichten der Luftwaffe, the air force procurement agency. Like the other Luftwaffe kit we have recently listed this helmet ticks all the boxes and it would be very hard to find a better original example.

6143
617 Squadron Honours Board 1943-1945 - Click for the bigger picture Sold617 Squadron Honours Board 1943-1945 - It seems only appropriate we should list this item today, exactly 75 years to the day after Wing Commander Guy Gibson led 617 Squadron of the Royal Air Force on an audacious bombing raid to destroy three dams in the Ruhr valley, on an operation code named 'Chastise' that took place on the night of 16-17 May 1943.

We have no idea who created this board or where it was displayed but we imagine it must have come from a redundant museum. It appears to be a one off and whilst the mount is melamine or similar the wood effect sets off perfectly the high quality etched aluminium data plaques and black and white photographs. The board effectively recounts the history of 617 from immediately after the Dams Raid to the end of WWII in 1945. It was deemed by the powers that be after 'Chastise' Gibson should be taken off operational flying and on 2 August, Gibson made his last fight with 617 Squadron, with his regular crew and his successor, Wing Commander George Holden. The information plaques detail the Ops flown by the subsequent Commanders Wing Commander Leonard Cheshire VC, Wing Commander Willie Tait and Group Captain Fauquier, together with dates and their targets. It also features two line drawings of the Avro Lancaster B1 in standard and modified forms. The board also carries black and white photographs mounted behind Perspex of Gibson, 617 crews, the 12,000 lbs 'Earthquake' and 22,000 lbs 'Grand Slam', both created by the Dam's bouncing Bomb inventor Sir Barnes Wallace. Another plaque gives considerable detail on the sinking of the 'Tirpitz' as well as a photograph of the post mission upturned hull of the wreck.

This is another one off item that we had intended to display here on the office wall but lack of space has precluded this so it is time to re home the board, when hopefully it can be shown to better advantage. It would sit happily in a private collection but ideally it would be better to go back into an appropriate museum display. It measures 48" x 24" (122 cm x 61 cm) and is fitted with brass hanging plates to aid wall mounting. As with all our stock feel free to request a range of more detailed photographs to check out the work involved in creating this homage to the amazing Commanders and crews of 617 Squadron.

2222
This is a Used Book
HMS Cornwall Commissioning Book - Click for the bigger picture SoldHMS Cornwall Commissioning Book

Although we describe this book as second hand it is virtually mint. It was issued to commemorate the commissioning of HMS Cornwall in the presence of HRH The Princess of Wales at Falmouth on 23rd April 1988. Cornwall was a Batch 3 Type 22 frigate of the Royal Navy. She was the first Batch 3 to be built, and the last to be decommissioned. Cornwall was known as "The Fighting 99" or "Ice cream frigate" and was based at Devonport, Plymouth, Devon. On 26 April 2011 she returned to Plymouth for the last time, and decommissioned on 30 June 2011 and was subsequently sold for scrap. Her bell was presented to Truro Cathedral. The books 54 pages are lavishly illustrated with colour and black and white photographs and includes a full list of the first ships company. The condition is impossible to fault with a silhouette image of the ship embossed on the leatherette cover as and it would be a fine addition to the library of any ex members of the ships company or their families.

Pages: 54
Cover: Hard
Author: CaptainC.L.Wexford-Brown D.S.O. & Others

5314
Luftwaffe Crash recovered relics from Walton Wood, Norfolk - Click for the bigger picture SoldLuftwaffe Crash recovered relics from Walton Wood, Norfolk - This small grouping came from a UK collector and we are told were recovered from Walton Wood, near East Walton in Norfolk. On line research confirms Dornier E-4 Wnr.4267 coded U5+CK operating with KG2 was shot down on 23rd August 1942 by Beaufighter X7944 piloted by Flying Officer Hugh Wyrill so would seem to indicate these relics relate to this aircraft.

Clearly the top item is the Dreieckrechner flight computer which is a period DR2 model manufactured by Dennert & Pape of Hamburg. It is clearly dated with a November 1940 manufacturing date as well as a Luftwaffe Fl number 23825. It is in better than relic condition but the disc is slightly bowed and distorted and has minor heat damage to the Perspex slides, so has most certainly been in a crash. The reverse side is in equally sound display condition.

Alongside this is a black elbow joint that looks like an oxygen or air tube connected onto the ribbed end. It has clearly been ground recovered with traces of mud and rust on the severed joint. The piece of alloy skin measures 10" long (26 cm) and still carries a good deal of the dark olive drab paint; some corrosion as you would expect but no ID marks to give a clue to its origins and we have no idea where it came from on the airframe. The final item is a bit of yellow cloth strap with a friction buckle. The webbing is severed and the stitching torn; it looks like the buckle part has been sewn back on using black thread. This is the piece I am least convinced by and it may not be associated with the crash but was picked up in the same area but we can't say for certain it's origins. It could I suppose be a Mae West strap or another unidentified strap used in the aircraft (flare holder perhaps) but that is pure speculation.

These items, mounted on a board and framed with relating story of crash would look quite impressive, in a similar way to the parachute flare cartridge diorama we have also listed today. As with all our stock more detailed photographs of the individual items are available on request.

6679
Royal Naval Air Service WWI Flying Filter Goggles - Click for the bigger picture SoldRoyal Naval Air Service WWI 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 WWII 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.

1741
Air Ministry First Aid Outfit Aircraft - Click for the bigger picture SoldAir 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" (20 cm x 20 cm x 10 cm) 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.

6278
RAF Gloves, Flying, Gauntlet, Type D - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF 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 WWII 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 9.5 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.
5239
RAF Corporal's War Service Dress Blouse and Trousers - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF 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 WWII. 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 30.5".

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.

5159
Royal Naval Air Service Memorial Plaque Vermelles - Click for the bigger picture SoldRoyal Naval Air Service Memorial Plaque Vermelles - Vermelles village lies around three miles south of Cuinchyin in northern France and was a hot-spot in WWI. 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.75 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 WWI 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 WWI, 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 WWI, 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" (26 cm x20.5 cm)

5139
Coveralls, Mens, Cotton Drill, White - Click for the bigger picture SoldCoveralls, 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 WWII 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 WWII RAF bullion Squadron badge that if attached to the front breast pocket would set the suit off perfectly. Details and prices on request.

6277
Private Purchase Goggle Mask Flying - Click for the bigger picture SoldPrivate Purchase Goggle Mask Flying - A very fine example of the private purchase pattern of similar design to the RFC Mk I and Mk II Ministry issue mask goggles, a set of which we have also listed today. These invariably do not carry any identifying marks so we are unable in this instance to say when or by whom they were made but interestingly an identical set is illustrated on page 136, bottom right middle photograph, of Mick Prodger's excellent reference book 'Vintage Flying Helmets'.

This set are in apparently unissued condition with the leather of the mask soft and supple with all the original brown finish in place. They feature tear drop frames in aluminium with hinged outer sections to facilitate lens changes. Clear lenses are fitted and are well above the average with just minor fogging to the edges. The interior is blanket lined with synthetic fur trip around the lens frames. The original cloth back strap is fitted with just minor rust to the metal adjuster slides. A very crisp example that would be impossible to improve upon and could date from WWI through until the 1930's.

Whist not quite a desirable as the Mk I or II issue versions still a very good set and at a significantly keener price!

2179
'Spider's Web' Gun Sight - Click for the bigger picture Sold'Spider's Web' Gun Sight - Believed to be from a Bofor's gun, the sight is in excellent original condition with evidence of original black paint. It is marked near the mount 7. A/2186 and on the reverse LMSD62. The circle diameter is 19 cm (7.5") and it stands 28 cm (11").
3743
Grip and joystick from AT-6 Texan - Click for the bigger picture SoldGrip and joystick from AT-6 Texan - We purchased this set as an unidentified aircraft stick at auction with no idea what it came off. We have subsequently been advised it would have been from an AT-6 Texan and is fitted with a US or Canadian made grip. The numbers stamped on the reverse state 73-61044 and separately IO. The Texan (or Harvard as it was known in RAF service) provided an advanced trainer capability for pilots of the United States Army Air Forces, United States Navy, Royal Air Force and other air forces of the British Commonwealth during World War II and into the 1970s. The grip is in generally very good condition although the paint has been mainly rubbed away. The gun button which seems to be some sort of alloy rather than brass is marked "safe and fire" and the back of the gun button is marked 66-61179-2. The grip cover is in generally good shape but one area of damage but when viewed from the front, it looks perfect. This one came complete with stick which is marked 52 52103 which has also been identified as Harvard. This is in the original paint and is in excellent condition. The bolts to secure the grip to the stick are missing but the holes line up exactly, although we can't say for sure that this stick was used in conjunction with this grip in service. Measures 34" (87 cm)
6021
RAF Aircraft Propeller Tip - Click for the bigger picture SoldRAF Aircraft Propeller Tip - Small but beautifully formed! Painted in the classic wartime colours of RAF aircraft of matt black with a yellow tip this example has clearly been cut from a damaged propeller and taken as a souvenir. Sadly the provenance associated with it has been lost down the years but seems highly likely to date back to WWII. The prop was constructed from layers of wood, glued together, while being compressed to about half their original thickness, before being shaped. Some had the wood encased in a sheath of fine mesh, and all had their leading edges covered by a thin sheath of brass. The whole lot was then covered in a semi-matt black plastic, by makers Rayoid, Rotaloid, or Schwartz. This example is of modest size measuring 7.25" x 6" (19 cm x 15 cm) and would sit comfortably in an RAF associated collection…and significantly cheaper to buy and post than the non-truncated examples we see from time to time!
5207
This is a Used Book
Polish Resettlement Corps Conditions of Service - Click for the bigger picture SoldPolish Resettlement Corps Conditions of Service

An original booklet, marked 'Restricted' issued by the Air Ministry In October 1946 and published jointly in English and Polish. Following the German/Soviet invasion of Poland in 1939 many citizens chose to evacuate their country and fled to Hungary, Romania, France, and finally, Britain. By the mid-1940s some 35,000 Polish airmen, soldiers, and navy personnel reached the UK, making up the largest non-British military force in the country. Of those, some 8,500 were PAF airmen, a resource the RAF were desperately short of in the summer of 1940. At first deemed "suspicious" by the British Royal Air Force, the Polish proved their allegiance by fighting with skill, bravery and determination during the 1940 Battle of Britain and continued to serve with distinction throughout the war.

In 1945 the Yalta agreement sealed the fate of the Poles with the imposition of a Communist Government and the onset of the 'Cold War'. Each of the three services in the UK was responsible for the de-mobilisation and transfer of armed combatants into the Resettlement Corps (PRC)by an Act of Parliament passed in February 1946 and enrolment into the Polish Air Force Resettlement Corps (PARC) started shortly afterwards. The Air Ministry published these conditions of service on 14th October 1946 and listed the choices available to members of PRC to either return to Poland, settle in Britain or emigrate to Commonwealth or other countries.

At the beginning of 1947 some 11,000 Poles 'joined' the PARC. Of these it is estimated that 3,000 Poles from the PAF chose to be repatriated (sadly to a very uncertain future)and another 2,400 emigrated to other countries. Some 9,000 PAF personnel stayed in Britain with at least 5,000 finding civilian jobs. It must be said in view of the dedicated service offered by so many Poles to the allied war effort many were shabbily treated by the British post war including a campaign by the TUC and others and this was not Britain's 'Finest Hour.' The PRC was finally disbanded after fulfilling its purpose in 1949.

This booklet, which is not a reprint, is addressed to all 'Polish Officers, Airmen and Airwomen of the Polish Air Force'. It clearly spells out this little known piece of post war history. In dual languages, as mentioned, the first half is made up of 11 pages and covers all aspects of the terms offered including repatriation options education and training, clothing, and rates of pay according to rank in a pull out section. The second half of the booklet is the same but duplicated in Polish. It remains in remarkably good condition despite its 72 years of age with just minor age related marks to the buff card cover. How many of these booklets have survived down the years is unknown but it represents a very important piece of Polish Resettlement Corps /Polski Korpus Przysposobienia I Rozmieszczenia history that will sit well in either a Museum display or a specialist RAF/Polish collection. This is a one off and is unlikely to be repeated. As with all our listings more detailed pictures are available on request to show examples of the text in English or Polish depending on your disposition!

Pages: 21
Cover: Soft
Author: The Air Ministry

4833
Luftwaffe Late War Flying Boots - Click for the bigger picture SoldLuftwaffe Late War Flying Boots - These boots represent something of an enigma. At first glance they matched fairly closely the pair illustrated in Mick Prodger's Luftwaffe V RAF Flight Clothing reference book bottom of page 150, described by him as: ''Towards the end of the war, quality declined visibly in manufacture of all flying clothing and equipment, and nowhere is it more obvious than in flying boots. These late war boots are made from a patchwork of dyed leather and unfinished suede, the single zip fasteners are made from black plastic, and the metal fittings are crudely cast and shaped from steel or zinc'.

In checking the detail of our boots we noted minor variances between left and right although they came in together and are both named to same chap so have clearly been issued and used as pair. One has an eclectically heated label sewn in although no signs of it being a heated boot but we have noted possible evidence where a heating snap may have been removed. In addition the friction clips on the top leg straps are to a slightly different pattern, as are the snaps. The zips are a matched pair by Ri-Ri of plastic economy style; one features a leather pull tab and the other does not. The last shape is sharper than early war issue boots and the soles are leather rather than the rubber 'Willop' pattern. The other unusual thing is no bottom straps over instep are fitted and in checking the detail no sign of these having been removed. Both boots carry RB number labels and include what we believe to be the owners initials R.B.Y.

We have subsequently discussed these discrepancies with Mick Prodger and between us have come to the conclusion these are probably a pair of reconditioned/reissued boots characteristic of late war production. The Germans, like everyone else, had a shortage of raw materials like rubber and metal by 1944; worn and damaged RAF Irvin jackets were repaired, reconditioned and reissued in just the same way. Sadly we don't have any provenance with the boots but as we have often said if they could only talk they would certainly have a story to tell!

So whilst not an exact matched pair we believe their current condition is as they were used in service in the final stages of WWII circa 1944/45 and would sit happily as such in a collection or on a mannequin. The leather and suede sections are in generally good display condition, the zips are fully functional and the interior sheepskin lining is actually very good indeed. The leather soles and rubber heel tips are sound and do not show excessive wear.

So now you have it. If you like your kit 'mint and boxed' these are probably not for you. If however you like kit that has certainly been well used and representative of service condition in the closing stages of WWII then these could be just the ticket. If of possible interest please drop us a line for a range of detailed photographs that will fully illustrate exactly what we have on offer.
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