Type 45 Tiger and Rose Badge
This example of the Tiger and Rose badge is made of Anodised Aluminium (AA) (also known as Staybright). The idea of these ‘Staybright’ badges was that they required no polishing thus reducing the amount of time soldiers needed to spend on cleaning their badges.
AA badges were introduced into the British army in the early 1950’s but as a general rule they were issued as stocks of existing bi metal badges were used up. It appears that these badges were not popular with the longer serving soldiers and many continued to wear bi metal badges.
The reason for the production of these York and Lancaster AA badges is not totally clear. By the 1960’s, the only York and Lancaster badged units were the 1st Battalion, the Hallamshire Battalion (TA) and several army cadet units in the South Yorkshire area.
This particular pattern of makers mark (J.R. Gaunt B. Ham) was used from 1966 onwards which would count out the use of AA Tiger and Rose badges by the regular battalion as at the time, they were part of the Yorkshire Brigade and remained so up until their disbandment in 1968. Throughout this time, they wore the cap badge of the Yorkshire Brigade and not the Tiger and Rose meaning that these AA badges were not used by them.
It has been suggested that the AA Tiger and Rose badges were made for the Hallamshire Battalion which existed up until 1969 but there is no evidence to support this. Anecdotal evidence from two surviving Hallamshire Senior Officers of the period suggests that this TA battalion wore bi metal badges and not the AA badge. 10
Therefore, the most likely use of these badges was for the various army cadet units scattered around the South Yorkshire area that continued to wear the Tiger and Rose badge until at least 1985 and there is anecdotal evidence to indicate this. An army cadet adult instructor (Mr A Scott from Sheffield) still serving in 2013, remembers being issued with an AA badge in 1984 which was part of the last batch made. The production of these was believed to have been funded by the York and Lancaster Regimental Association.