16th Air Assault Brigade Shirts

Amongst the many units of the British Army that saw combat in Iraq and Afghanistan during the War on Terror, 16th Air Assault Brigade deployed to the latter country more times than any other unit. The Brigade comprised of 6,200 personnel including:

·         a Formation Reconnaissance Squadron

·         an artillery regiment with an attached air defence battery

·         an engineer regiment

·         two parachute infantry battalions

·         two air assault infantry battalions

·         three aviation regiments

·         logistics, medical and mechanical engineering regiments or battalions

·         the Pathfinder Platoon

The badge adopted by this brigade was a striking eagle and today we are looking at a pair of desert DPM shirts badged up to this brigade. Firstly we have an example with subdued insignia:

The badge is rendered in black and tan, as is the Union flag sewn above it:

The opposite sleeve has subdued parachute wings, but a full cover TRF:

This shirt is one of a batch of four that came together, from the same soldier and three of the shirts have this subdued insignia for operations and were therefore the pattern of insignia used most frequently. One of the shirts, however, has full colour insignia on its arms:

The badge here is in the traditional airborne colours of Cambridge blue and claret, with a full colour union flag above:

The opposite sleeve of this shirt also has a pair of parachutist’s wings and the blue square formation badge of the Second Battalion, Parachute Regiment:

These shirts were a very generous gift from a good friend and as always, uniform with badges on them are really interesting items to have within the collection. For the young collector, these are a fascinating and affordable area of collecting to get into and prices will only climb as the years go on so it is well worth investing now whilst they remain so affordable.

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