Westmorland and Cumberland Yeomanry Cavalry Overalls

A few months back a friend got in contact to say he had a pair of matching breeches for my Army Service Corps tunic and would I be interested. I was of course and they certainly looked correct so I duly bought them off him to go with my tunic:

It was only when I posted images of the trousers on a Facebook page that someone pointed out that the label actually had the letters W&CY written on it and the owner’s rank is ‘trooper’:

It turned out then that this pair of trousers were cavalry overalls for the Westmoreland and Cumberland Yeomanry. This regiment had been formed back in 1819 and was deployed on public order duties are various points in the nineteenth century. It would go on to serve in the Boer War, The First World War and then became an artillery unit and served through World War II. Before the Great War, the regiment’s undress uniform consisted of a red, frogged jacket with black overall trousers, with two white stripes down either leg:

It is these overall trousers that we are looking at today:

The trousers are made of a dark blue or black woollen cloth and as mentioned previously, have two broad white stripes down the leg:

The bottom of each leg has leather reinforcement where it rests on the trooper’s boot to help prevent it from wearing out too quickly:

The overalls have a straight waist, with a notch and buttons for braces:

The fly is buttoned with the same japanned buttons and there is a small change pocket to one side:

This has an interior cotton pocket bag. Note also the striped cotton used to line the waistband for comfort:

So, these trousers didn’t turn out to be what either myself or my friend thought, although they are still fascinating and beautifully made. Whilst the hunt for a pair of correct pair continues, these are still a nice addition to the collection.

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