Following on from the officer’s 49 pattern battledress blouse we looked at here, a friend of mine has kindly sent pictures of his King’s Yorkshire Light Infantry Officer’s BD blouse. This differs from my example in being a 1947 pattern blouse rather than the much more common 49 pattern (pictures courtesy of the Andrew Dearlove collection):The 1947 pattern of battledress is quite rare now (and sadly unloved by most collectors); it is a half way house between the wartime 1940 pattern and the National Service Era 49 pattern. The collar can be pressed open to allow it to be worn with a shirt and tie, however it retains the ability to be secured at the neck with a hook and eye in the manner of the old 1940 battledress. This change was a result of officialdom giving in to the unofficial practice of tailoring wartime battledress to allow it to be worn with a tie, rather than a multitude of unregulated changes to army uniform an authorised pattern was introduced. This pattern of blouse also reintroduced the pleats to the pockets on the front that had been deleted as a wartime economy, and a fly covered the buttons up the front, but not those on the pocket flaps. The sleeve was also cut in a slightly fuller style than previous patterns.
This battledress has a number of post war embellishments typical of officers’ uniforms, with large divisional patches on both shoulders, regimental rank pips, collar dogs on both lapels and a double lanyard in rifle green worn around the neck under the collar:Sadly this uniform is missing its shoulder titles, but would originally have had these on each shoulder as well. The label on the inside of the blouse shows it is a 1947 pattern blouse, a size 10 and was made by E Raffles & Co Ltd:E Raffles was set up by Emanuel Raffles in Manchester and by the mid twentieth century had a factory in part of the huge Brunswick Mills complex in Ancoats employing over a thousand people:The company was sold out of the family in the 1970s and closed in the 1980s.