Sleeve patch RAF Air Formation signals flash WW2 (canvas)

printed canvas, single

€ 15,00

In mid 1940, 1st and 2nd Air Formation Signals returned from France and moved, eventually, to Northern Ireland and Hendon respectively. In the late summer of 1942, both units embarked for North Africa for the landings in Algiers and Tunisia (Operation 'Torch'). During the period in the United Kingdom an arm flash was introduced consisting of a small navy blue triangle with RAF wings at the base. This was worn by Air Formation Signal Units engaged on Operations 'Torch' and, later, 'Overlord' until October 1948 when it was superceded by a rectangular flash with a Red Beaufighter on the background of the corps colours.

The original design of the 'wings' flash had an Air Force Blue triangle and the original art work is held in the Royal Signals museum archives among the papers left by Colonel FS Morgan. The flashes worn by the members of 1, 2, 7 and 10 AFS incorporated the unit number above the wings.

The need was perceived for a vehicle badge to identify Air Formation Signals vehicles, particularly as they operated on RAF airfields. A plan view of the Beaufighter aircraft was eventually chosen and painted (against the background of the traditional blue/white signals colours) on the wings and tailboards of unit vehicles. It is thought that the aircraft was coloured red to signify the army (traditionally scarlet) connection. RAF roundals were also painted on the tailboard and the other vehicle wing.

For the Normandy invasion, eight new Air Formation Signal units (Nos 11 to 18) were formed and most of these units adopted a black Mosquito aircraft as the emblem used on their vehicles and unit sign boards, whilst still wearing the original, triangular, arm badges.

After a short spell in the Royal Armoured Corps, the North Somerset Yeomanry, amalgamated from July 1942 with a Royal Corps of Signals unit to become 4th Air Formation Signals (North Somerset Yeomanry). In this capacity the Regiment fought through the last phase of the campaign in North Africa, through the campaign in Sicily and up through Italy until August 1944. It then returned to the United Kingdom and was reformed into 14th Air Formation Signals (NSY). From the following January it served until the end of the war in North West Europe.


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