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Sergeant Simpson’s Tunic 

This full dress tunic was worn by Sergeant Simpson of ‘D’ Company, 4th Volunteer Battalion, later the 7th Battalion, The Manchester Regiment.

What to the badges mean?

Sergeant rank Chevrons

We know that this was a Sergeant’s tunic because of the rank chevrons or stripes on his right sleeve.

The four-pointed star above the chevrons is a Skill-at-Arms badge. Members of the ‘Regular’ Army never wore this star. The badge was worn by Sergeants of the ‘Volunteer Force’, predecessor to today’s Territorial Army, who had been returned ‘proficient’ in a range of military skills. It was given to the man within one year of promotion to the rank of Sergeant. This badge fell in to disuse with the outbreak of the First World War in 1914.

Efficiency badges

The five pointed stars on his lower right sleeve are ‘Efficiency Badges’. These five stars tell us that the man who wore this tunic served with the volunteer forces for at least 25 years. Each star was issued to a Volunteer who was returned as efficient in rifle drill and practice for five years – not necessarily consecutively nor even in the same Corps.

Badge for 4th Volunteer Battalion of the Manchester Regiment

The embroidery on the shoulder tells us the man served with the 4th Volunteer Battalion of the Manchester Regiment. This unit was known by this name between 1888 and 1908, before changing its name to the 7th (Territorial Force) Battalion of the Manchester Regiment, so helping us to date this tunic.

Egyptian Sphinx badge

The two collar badges depict an Egyptian Sphinx with the word ‘EGYPT’ beneath. This symbol was worn to remember the 96th Regiment of Foots’ Egyptian campaign against Napoleon Bonaparte in 1801. The 96th Regiment later became the 2nd Battalion of the Manchester Regiment.
The badges on his left sleeve show the prizes he got for competing in various shooting competitions between 1894 and 1909.

This tunic was conserved in 2012 with support from the Kathy Callow Trust Link to External Website.

Tunic before conservation Tunic after conservation Tunic after conservation Tunic after conservation

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