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Thread: Lack of insignia on RAAF personnel uniforms

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    Default Lack of insignia on RAAF personnel uniforms

    This photo shows Harry Riding (left) and Garnet Durdin; both were RAAF - Riding a W/Op and Durdin an A/G. Riding trained in Canada and Durdin at an air gunnery school in Australia. The photo was sent to me by a relative of Harry Riding.

    Can someone explain the lack of insignia on their tunics?

    I assumed this photo was taken when they were together at No. 27 Operational Training Unit (27 OTU) at RAF Lichfield in Staffordshire, No. 460 Squadron (RAAF) or RAF Lindholme in November 1942, home of No. 1656 Heavy Conversion Unit (1656 HCU) to convert Lancaster bombers. My gut reaction was a summer / autumn time.

    Both men were later lost when Lancaster ED559 of 100 Squadron disappeared whilst on a gardening op on 4/5 March 1943.

    Photo:

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    Default Re: Lack of insignia on RAAF personnel uniforms

    Seems to me that the photo was taken not in Canada but in Australia as neither has any rank or the white flash in their caps to show they had been accepted as aircrew.

    John.

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    Default Re: Lack of insignia on RAAF personnel uniforms

    Just adding to my post if they were on an OTU they would have had both their stripes and half wing.

    John.

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    Default Re: Lack of insignia on RAAF personnel uniforms

    Just possible that their Sgt stripes just out of sight on left sleeve (at this stage I think that stripes only required on one sleeve, due to shortage of these items), although cannot understand why they are not wearing "Australia" i/d badges on shoulders. To others looking on, their RAAF dark blue uniforms would have been distinctive enough I guess, and if you looked really closely you might notice the RAAF buttons and cap badges too. These were not RAAF regulations as such, but RAF ones, applicable generally to all Commonwealth personnel serving under RAF administration. Have to admit that at LEAST A HINT of the arm chevrons would be showing, but this is the best explanation I can think of to explain this apparently unusual situation. As already postulated by John W, if this photograph was taken in Australia, then "Australia" I/d badges would not have been necessary at all, only required if operating under auspices of another Commonwealth air force.
    David D

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    Default Re: Lack of insignia on RAAF personnel uniforms

    Quote Originally Posted by John Williams View Post
    Seems to me that the photo was taken not in Canada but in Australia as neither has any rank or the white flash in their caps to show they had been accepted as aircrew.

    John.
    Personally I reckon John has it there, photo likely soon after enlistment in Australia and they were probably AC2 awaiting acceptance for aircrew training although their service numbers do suggest a difference in date of enlistment so that tends to confuse the issue
    cheers PeteS
    Last edited by PeteS; 30th April 2021 at 17:05.

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    Default Re: Lack of insignia on RAAF personnel uniforms

    Quote Originally Posted by PeteS View Post
    Personally I reckon John has it there, photo likely soon after enlistment in Australia and they were probably AC2 awaiting acceptance for aircrew training although their service numbers do suggest a difference in date of enlistment so that tends to confuse the issue
    cheers PeteS
    I had a look on when they enlisted Riding on 2/3/41 and Durdin on 30/3/41.

    John.

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    Default Re: Lack of insignia on RAAF personnel uniforms

    Don't think the shingles on the wall are a typical Australia building material, normally just weatherboard even in WW2.

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