39 Pattern Webbing

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1939 Pattern Webbing was the leather variant of the 1937 Pattern Webbing. At the beginning of the second world war in 1939 the British Army was around 200,000 strong, with the introduction of National Service and the call up of Army reservists the Army increased to 2,000,000 men. The problem was that they had to then equip them all however the production of the patt 37 webbing equipment could not keep up with demand, this same problem had also occurred in 1914 at the beginning of the first world war with the patt 08 webbing equipment, this problem was solved by the introduction of the leather patt 14 equipment. So just as they did in the first world war the government approached the heads of the leather industry and asked them to design a leather alternative to Patt 37, basically they came up with a copy of the patt 37 webbing only in leather. The difference between the two was that there was no patt 39 Haversack or packs. If needed they would use Patt 37 Haversacks and Packs with the leather equipment, the government immediately ordered one million sets of Leather Infantry Equipment Patt 39. Unlike the Patt 14 used in the first world war Patt 39 never saw front line service with the British Army, it was only used for training purposes and rear line troops including the home guard. When enough patt 37 webbing became available Patt 39 was withdrawn and reissued to the free Belgians and Dutch, it was also sent to Russia were it was issued to Czech and Polish troops there. The Belgians and Dutch carried on using it post war. .[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "PATTERN 39". josephs-militaria-and-homefront-collection.co.uk. Retrieved 5 April 2014. 

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