Victorian 1878 Officer’s Home Service Pattern, 1st East Kent Rifles Green Cloth Helmet.
A rare example of the 1878 pattern 1st east Kent rifles green cloth helmet. Standard four panel design with a dark green cloth body and dark metal cross piece and spike with subdued white metal rose pattern supports which are supporting the black velvet backed chin chain. To the front of the helmet is the original blackened metal 1st East Kent rifles green cloth helmet plate of a Victoria Crowned Maltese Cross with lions in the void’s. To the centre is a circlet inscribed “1st Voltr. Battn East Kent Rifles” and the White Horse of Kent on a red background. The interior is with a beige leather sweatband and crimson silk lining. With tailors details of Gardiner & Co of London. Unusually the underside peaks are of brown leather skiver. This is a nice example of what is now a scarce and hard to find, 1st east Kent rifles green cloth helmet.
1st East Kent Rifles: In 1856, the Regiment was armed with rifles and changed their title to East Kent Mounted Rifles. Two years later they were granted the prefix ‘Royal’ by Queen Victoria. In 1873, the Duke of Connaught became Honorary Colonel. The Regiment and the two batteries which succeeded it, bore the title ‘Duke of Connaught’s Own’.
The 1st (1877-1908) and 2nd admin Battalion of Kent Rifle Volunteers was formed with headquarters at Tunbridge Wells on 3rd of July 1860, moving to Penshurst in 1863, Sevenoaks in 1867 and Tonbridge in 1871. The battalion was consolidated in 1877 as the new 1st Corps with eight companies. 1st east Kent rifles green cloth helmet.
‘A’ and ‘B’ Maidstone (late 1st Corps).
‘C’ Tonbridge (late 14th Corps).
‘D’ Tunbridge Wells (late 17th Corps).
‘E’ Penshurst (late 23rd Corps).
‘F’ Leeds Castle [late 31st Corps).
‘G’ Sevenoaks (late 33rd Corps).
‘H’ Westerham (late 35th Corps).
Good Condition. this 1st east Kent rifles green cloth helmet has a very small amount of moth nips to the front banding however this is covered by the chin chain and cannot be seen, there is also a small amount of storage wear.