1914 Pattern Belt

Continuing our look at the 1914 pattern equipment set, today we come to the belt. The belt was made of leather and came in two sizes, 42 inches and 48 inches long. Both lengths, however, were 2 ¼ “ wide and made of brown dyed leather (examples in a greenish shade can also be found): 

Note also the construction of the interior of the belt with rivets and extra sewn pieces of leather to reinforce the back. The belt secured with a cast brass snake buckle, a design that had been in use with the British Army since at least the Napoleonic War: 

The belt folded back on itself, with the buckle held at the point of the fold. The end of the belt was secured using a brass single pronged buckle that went through holes on both thicknesses of leather. A leather keeper was also provided to help hold the belt securely: 

On the rear of the belt four leather straps were fitted, together with a pair of brass buckles: 

These straps were used to secure the pack and steady it on the back, as well as to allow items that hung below the belt such as the water bottle carrier and entrenching tool cover to be attached. The belt was most commonly worn as part of the equipment set, rather than on its own for walking out as the four straps on the rear made it rather awkward to wear on its own. It is occasionally seen used as a walking out belt, with these straps wrapped up and secured around the belt itself, but the design did not lend itself to a neat soldierly appearance.

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