Petty Officer’s Beret

Following the Second World War, the Royal Navy progressively started using more modern working clothing, based on the Action Working Dress introduced in the latter days of the war. Initially this order of dress was used with traditional sailor’s caps but these were bulky and could not be stowed in a pocket when not needed so the RN increasingly used the beret that had also been adopted by the British Army during the 1950s. The RN used a dark blue beret and today we are looking at an example used by a Petty Officer: 

The beret has had the inner lining removed as was often the case to help the owner shape the beret better. The beret has the usual leather band around the crown of the beret. The badge itself replicates the badge used on the petty officer’s peaked cap but rather than being embroidered it is made of bi-metal, with the anchor in white metal and the rest in brass: 

Note how the top of the crown has been sewn to the beret, with these large badges that are only attached by two points on the main badge, the top of the badge can fall forwards when being worn and this stitch stops that from happening. The Queen’s crown indicates that this beret dates to after 1952. The RN never adopted staybrite metal so the beret and badge could date anywhere from 1952 to 2022, and the same design will be in use for the next few years until an updated version is introduced for the new King’s crown. Here a petty officer can be seen wearing one such beret: 

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