Pre WW2 British Royal Air Force Officer's Mess Dress (only tunic shown).
During the Second World War the wearing of RAF Mess dress was officially suspended, to be reintroduced several years after the end of the conflict. On display is an example of the 1934 pattern, with ribbed silk lapels and rank braid worn on the sleeves, (in this case denoting the rank of Group Captain). The Mess Dress is completed by a matching blue waistcoat and trousers. A gold wire embroidered Air Gunner's brevet is worn on the left lapel. Please click here to see which peak cap would have been worn with this uniform.
More information on RAF uniforms and Mess Dress can be found in this excellent book, Badges & Uniforms of the Royal Air Force.
WW2 British Royal Air Force Warrant Officer's Service tunic.
Warrant Officer's wore a similar style Service Dress uniform to Officer's, albeit of a different quality. This example reputedly belonged to Warrant Officer C. S. Chapman of 201 Squadron RAF Coastal Command, (although is unnamed). Rank is shown on the tunic by the large Royal coat of arms worn on the lower sleeve. A Flight Engineer brevet is worn above the medal ribbon. The medal ribbons represent (L to R): 1939 -1945 Star, Atlantic Star (modern reproduction placeholder) and the General Service Medal.
For more information about RAF uniforms visit our Book Review page, and the excellent book from Pen & Sword by Malcolm C. Hobart.
WW2 British Royal Air Force Officer's Service tunic. VR (Volunteer Reserve).
A typical example of an RAF pilot's blue / grey wartime Service tunic, dating to pre 1943. As with the 1934 pattern Mess Dress jacket, rank is also displayed on the cuff, although in the case of Service tunics this consisted of black lace with pale blue centre. This tunic ranks to a Flight Lieutenant. The buttons are gilt , as are the VR lapel badges, while the Pilot's wings are silk embriodered
WW2 British Royal Air Force Officer's Raincoat.
Seldom seen, this RAF Officer's raincoat is part of a grouping which consists of the above tunic as well as service caps, and dates to pre1943. Made by Heptex, the coat does not display any branch or rank insignia. The buttons are blued plastic while the belt buckle is black leather covered steel. Note the height of the belt, which is not physically attached to the coat.