Despite the Great War ending in 1918, the British Army’s 08 webbing sets would soldier on for another twenty years in front line service. As can be expected, during this time a continuing programme of upgrades and modifications were made to various elements of the equipment, so that on a detail level the webbing worn in 1938 was rather different to that used in 1918. Alongside major changes like the deletion of the entrenching tool, minor changes were made to the waterbottle carrier and it is that we are looking at tonight:The original description of the water bottle carrier from 1908 when it was introduced read:
Waterbottle Carrier- This consists of a skeleton framework in which the waterbottle is inserted and secured by a snapped on retaining strap. The carrier is fitted with two buckles for attachment to the end pieces of the equipment and has a short extension piece and snap fastener for use when the waterbottle is carried on the front of the haversack.
The snap fastener to attach the waterbottle to the haversack was deleted before the outbreak of World War one, the major post war change to the waterbottle was to remove the snap fastener from its original position on the front of the carrier and move it to the top:This change meant replacing one long strap that went over the bottle with two shorter ones that met in the middle- the straps being securely stitched to the front and back of the carrier:This change was authorised by List of Chang entry L of C §24092 on 6th June 1921. Existing carriers were to be modified and all new carriers made to this design, my example was made to this design and has a surprisingly late date of 1940 printed inside, along with the makers mark for MECo:The rest of the carrier remains unchanged and it still retains the large 2” Twigg buckles to attach it to the rest of the 08 webbing set:In this image of Palestine form 1936, the modified waterbottle carrier can be seen being worn, albeit indistinctly, by the soldier second from left: