Discussion in 'British Indian Army' started by GeorgyB, Aug 9, 2021.
Could anyone confirm whether this is an Indian Police Uniform (circa 1940s) rather than military?
Try looking for images from the 1984 ITV drama series 'Jewel in the Crown' of Tim Piggott-Smith who played an Indian Police (IPS) officer, a Capatain Merrick:
From: The Jewel in the Crown (TV series) - Wikipedia
Here is one image:
The snag is that his role changed to being in the Indian Army!
The photo above shows three stars and the IPS today use such badges. See:
In the photo in post #1 I can see stars rather than pips .
David, what a great idea, I will have to track down Ep1 but the belt is definitely right isn't it. And Owen, yes, they are definitely stars. Thank you both.
I guess this potentially is my grandfather then. I've never considered it to be him, as it was with my dad's army photos, and it doesn't look anything like the other two photos I have of him (as a young man circa 1927 and another from 1960), or the image I have of him in my head - although I only met him for the first time when he was an old man in the late 1970s.
I can definitely recommend 'The Jewel In The Crown' to anyone with an interest in the last days of the Raj, the Indian Police, the Indian Army and the war in India/Burma. It should be available on DVD. I watch it once a year and consider it to be the best drama series ever produced by British TV.
I can't remember if I watched it in the 1980s, some of it does seem familiar, but I knew nothing of my grandfather's life then, so we're definitely going to sit down and watch it properly now.
A word of caution on the belt - its a Sam Browne Sam Browne belt - Wikipedia and the basic layout/style has been used by military and police forces the world over since it was invented so in itself isn't really a great indicator of the wearer being police rather than military (although the shoulder stars do seem a good sign)
Noted. Thank you. As you can see I come from a position of no military knowledge at all, so all the help is much appreciated.
Just be aware that Merrick - the District Superintendent of Police - is the villain of the piece. Well, an anti-hero, at least.
Thank you so much for recommending it, I must have watched it in the 80s but it was fantastic to watch it again - so relevant to my current research, and so well-made. We really enjoyed it.
A bit late here, but if you have the new BritBox it is on there.
I quite enjoyed it, but tired after a while. Piggot-Smith OBE is fantastic!
The image you posted must be IPS (Indian Police) as they wore stars, rather than pips like other Commonwealth Police. I imagine (not sure) it was so you could distinguish between Army & Police in India. Nevertheless, they dress very similarly, with things like swagger sticks, Sam Browne belts and peaked caps.
This link may be of interest too.
I found it hard to understand him - he had such an important role and could have had it all, he was clever and ambitious enough to promote surely and then he just became this bitter-twisted fellow. I suppose the last episode ( I think ) explains that!
There is one other difference that I note: he is wearing puttees. This may or may not be an indication that he is Police rather than Army.
Attached is a photo of Deolali Boys RA (Junior Soldiers) taken in 1943. They all wear socks. The Adult NCO's wear boots and socks with gaiters.
The Officers brown shoes and socks and look far more formal.
As an Army Officer he would have had a batman to press and maintain his kit.
Photo from a neighbour whose father is in the photo.
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