Second Pattern ATS Holdall

Last year we looked at the first pattern ATS holdall. This was a very practical piece of equipment, and far superior to the kitbags in use by men at the time. It was not without its shortcomings however, the main one being that the top opening only stretched part of the length of the holdall which made putting items into and taking them out of the holdall a bit of a pain. Because of this, a second, updated version of the holdall was introduced in 1945:

The change from the earlier pattern was that the opening to the bag now stretched the full length of the holdall:

The difference is most clear when the two patterns are viewed from above, side by side:

Apart from this, the designs are pretty much the same, so the holdall has the same rounded triangle shape when viewed from the end:

Heavy duty canvas handles are fitted half way along the bag, the fabric of which stretched under the body of the holdall to secure it all firmly regardless of the weight put inside:

And two rows of brass eyelets are fitted to allow a piece of cord to be threaded through and used to drawn the bag in:

This holdall is very tired, and although still structurally robust it has a lot of stains and wear, suggesting it has been stored in a shed or workshop for decades. The markings on the rear of the weather flap are pretty faint, but the date of 1945 can still be made out:

Despite being designed for the ATS, these holdalls were popular with many different troops and it did not take long for enterprising male soldiers from getting hold of examples to use for their kit in place of the traditional sausage shaped kit bag.

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