Royal Australian Regiment Skippy Badge - Solomon Brothers Apparel

Royal Australian Regiment Skippy Badge

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Royal Australian Regiment Skippy Badge

In early 1949, the Director of Infantry, Brigadier I. R. Campbell CBE, DSO wrote to the Battalions of the Regiment asking for suggestions for a Regimental Badge. Several designs were submitted and the one eventually accepted was that submitted by 1 RAR then serving at Ingleburn, NSW. In the early stages of the preparation of a design, it was intended to be the badge of the First Battalion only, but subsequently it was decided that battalions of the Regiment would wear the one badge.

On the 10th of March 1949, it was announced that:
"His Majesty, King George the Sixth had been graciously pleased to give his approval to the title "Royal" being appended to the title of the Australian Regiment".

In the final form, the badge was the combination of many suggestions put forward by several persons. Those involved in 1 RAR's design were Lieutenant Colonel J. L. A. Kelly DSO, Commanding Officer of the Battalion, Major T. E. Archer, Major K. B. Thomas MC and Sergeant E. J. O'Sullivan, the Intelligence Sergeant. The Intelligence Section of the Battalion prepared sketches and assisted in the design.

In deciding upon the various heraldic devices for inclusion in the motif of the badge, an early intention was to incorporate the identification signs of the AIF Divisions that contributed personnel to 34 Australian Infantry Brigade for the occupation forces in Japan. This proved impracticable because the Sixth Division had a kangaroo, the Seventh Division, a kookaburra and the Ninth Division, a platypus; all surmounting a boomerang. At this stage it became quite clear that the badge was to become a Regimental Badge and not a Battalion Badge so it was decided to adopt an animal typically Australian but different somewhat from those of the Division signs. A kangaroo was selected and the heraldic posture of the beast was to be standing (the Sixth Division kangaroo was leaping) to prevent a direct connection with a division tactical sign.
The Kangaroo.
The kangaroo is uniquely Australian fauna and universally accepted as an Australian symbol. The
original sketch showed the kangaroo with its forepaws relaxed but on the badge its
forepaws are outstretched. This occurred because the die-caster could not achieve proper definition with the paws hanging.
The Boomerang.
The boomerang is closely associated with our Aboriginal people and was also related to the tactical signs of the Second AIF from which 34 Australian Infantry Brigade was formed.
The Wattle Wreath.
The wattle wreath is a symbolic Australian flora in bloom and a variation of the laurel wreath, which is part of many British and Australian badges.
The Crossed Rifles.
The crossed rifles signify the personal weapon of the Infantryman. The rifles are the type that were used at the time of the formation of the Regiment, ie: "Rifle, .303 inch, Short Magazine, Lee Enfield, (SMLE) Number 1, Mark 3."
The Crown.
The Royal Crown was included because the regiment bears the title, "Royal".