The Position of AIF Badges & Insignia
Badges of Rank & Appointment
The following is taken from the Orders for Dress and Clothing 1918. The positions for badges of rank and appointment are provided in this publication for men of normal dimensions. While general positions for these badges are provided by the Orders for Dress and Clothing 1912, they do not include the measurements provided in the 1918 edition of these orders. Excepting the one-bar chevron, the position of the badges of appointment for Gunners, Drivers, Sappers, or Privates is not provided in either publication.
Measurements are taken from either the top or the bottom of the sleeve. For chevrons measurements extend to the point of the chevron in all cases. Crowns and other distinguishing badges are placed above the chevrons. All four-bar chevrons worn point upwards were worn on the forearm. The measurement for Warrant Officers badges is taken from the bottom of the sleeve to the base of the (lowest) badge. All rank and appointment badges were worn on the right sleeve only.
The Wounded Badge
Introduced on 9 August 1916 (Army Order No.204) the wounded stripe was to be worn by all officers and soldiers who had been wounded in any of the campaigns since 4 August 1914. The distinction was a strip of gold Russia No.1 braid, two inches in length, sewn perpendicularly on the left forearm sleeve of the service dress jacket. Each stripe indicated a single occasion of being wounded, subsequent stripes being placed on either side of the original at half inch intervals.
Warrant officers, non-commissioned officers and men wore the distinction on the left forearm sleeve, the lower edge of the braid three inches from the bottom of the sleeve. Subsequent badges were worn on either side of the original at half an inch interval.
Long Service/Good Conduct Badge
On 24 January 1917 approval was given for the award of a badge for long service combined with good conduct. Warrant and non-commissioned officers and men were eligible for the badge subject to the following conditions:
One chevron was worn for each complete years service in the AIF from the date of embarkation in Australia. No badge was issued however, to any man who, during the 12 months, had incurred a regimental entry in his sheet. Time absent from his unit in hospital or elsewhere on account of wounds and sickness, not the result of misconduct, counted as service towards earning the badge. A man in possession of a badge was forced to forfeit same on being convicted of any offence involving forfeiture of pay, but was eligible to regain the badge after six months good conduct.
The badge consisted of an inverted single chevron of service braid worn on the left forearm three inches above the edge of the cuff.
Overseas Service Chevrons
On 4 January 1918 approval was given for the award of chevrons to denote overseas service after 4 August 1914. The chevrons were of two colours. If the first chevron was earned on or before 31 December 1914, then it was red. If it was earned on or after 1 January 1915, it was blue. All additional chevrons after the first were blue. The AIF awarded the first chevron on the date the soldier left Australia. Additional chevrons were awarded for each successive aggregate period of twelve months service outside Australia.
The chevrons were of worsted embroidery, one quarter inch in width. They were worn on the right forearm. Warrant and non-commissioned officers and men wore the chevron with the apex of the lowest chevron midway between the seams and four inches above the bottom edge of the sleeve. If worn, the red chevron was below any blue.
The Gallipoli Service Emblem
A distinctive device for personnel who had served at Gallipoli was proposed by the Military Board on 6 November 1917. AIF Order No.937 established eligibility for wear:
Members of the Australian Imperial Force who served on Gallipoli will be entitled to wear over their unit colour patches... the letter 'A', as an indication that the wearer had taken part in the Gallipoli campaign.
Initially supplied at public expense the letter 'A' was approved in November 1917 as one inch high. In December however, it was modified to be three-quarters of an inch high and of brass. In practice examples range from an half inch to one inch and appear in a variety of materials other than brass, including silk thread and hand woven brass wire.
The Gallipoli Service Emblem was worn in the centre of the colour patch on each sleeve.