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Cap Badges
Cap Badges

Genuine British Army Cap Badges For Sale

As specialist international mail-order military insignia dealers, Ian Kelly (Militaria) stocks a wide range of genuine military cap badges for sale. We offer a no-quibble guarantee of authenticity.

Most of our insignia is British or from the British Empire or Commonwealth. We specialise in original cap ba...

Genuine British Army Cap Badges For Sale

As specialist international mail-order military insignia dealers, Ian Kelly (Militaria) stocks a wide range of genuine military cap badges for sale. We offer a no-quibble guarantee of authenticity.

Most of our insignia is British or from the British Empire or Commonwealth. We specialise in original cap badges from 1881 to the present day. We buy and sell world-wide and do not knowingly deal in re-strikes or reproductions.

For serious collectors of authentic British Army regimental cap badges, we recommend the following books by AL Kipling and HL King. These are excellent books with black and white photographs of many British Army cap badges. Each photographed badge is numbered and the 'KK numbers' are used by dealers and collectors as the 'industry-standard' to refer to cap badges.

Head-Dress Badges of the British Army - Volume 1 - Up to the end of the Great War. ISBN 0584109474: Muller, Blond & White Ltd. (1995) and

Head-Dress Badges of the British Army - Volume 2 - From the end of the Great War to the Present Day. ISBN 0584109482: Muller, Blond & White Ltd. (1994).

We also sell coloured regimental cap and beret badge backings - click for details

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Cap Badges 

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  • Navy Cap Badges and Tallies

    Navy Cap Badges and Tallies for sale.

    We are specialist international mail-order military insignia dealers, with a wide range of genuine Royal Navy cap badges and cap tallies for sale.  Most of our Naval insignia is from Victorian times to the present day.

    We occasionally have nautical insignia to buy from other countries, especially former British Empire and British Commonwealth countries.

  • Staybrite Army Cap Badges

    Genuine regimental Staybrite Army cap badges for sale.

    Alternative spellings Sta-Brite or Staybright, we abbreviate Anodised Aluminium to A/A on our lists. Anodising is an electro-plating process resulting in lightweight shiny badge. The main colours used are gold, silver and black.

    Staybrite replaced brass and white metal as the main metal for British Other Ranks' military insignia from about 1950 onwards, although some regiments had sufficient stocks of the old metal cap badges and did not convert to Staybrite cap badges until many years later. Given that King George VI died in 1952, it stands to reason that King's Crown Staybrite insignia is quite rare (We abbreviate King's Crown to KC on our catalogues). This section of our website deals specifically with Staybrite (Anodised Aluminium) cap badges.

    We also sell coloured regimental cap and beret badge backings - click for details

  • Army Officers' Cloth Cap Badges

    Army Officers' cloth cap badges for sale. Most Army Officers' cloth cap badges are bullion wire embroidered. Some are embroidered from cotton or man-made fibres such as poly-cotton, Lurex or Mylar.

  • Army Officers' Metal Cap Badges

    Army Officers' metal cap badges for sale.

    We stock a range of Army Officers' cap badges for sale.  Most are British, or from the British Commonwealth or British Empire.
    Officers' cap badges tend be be made from better quality metals and are often more ornate in design than Other Ranks' insignia.  Sometimes the Officer-pattern head-dress badge is a totally different size or design to the hat badges worn by non-Commissioned ranks.

  • Army Other Ranks' Cloth Cap Badges

    Other Ranks' embroidered or woven cloth beret and cap badges for sale.

  • Army Other Ranks' Metal Cap Badges

    Genuine Other Ranks' metal beret badges or cap badges (not Staybrite) for sale.

    We stock a range of genuine Army cap badges for sale. The cap badges in this section are the type worn by 'Other Ranks' (ORs), which is a British Army phrase meaning enlisted men and women, who are not Officers.  Cap badges worn by ORs, NCOs and Warrant Officers are in this section.

    Most of these are British Army Cap Badges, or from the British Commonwealth or British Empire regiments and corps. 

    If a cap badge has a crown, this can be used to tell the date or age of the cap badge.

    Some British Army regiments have regimental beret badges, which tend to be smaller than the badges worn on the peaked (visor) cap.  Beret badges first appeared in the late 1940s, so King's Crown beret badges can be rare because the last King of England died in 1952.

    Officers' cap badges tend be be made from better quality metals and are often more ornate in design than Other Ranks' insignia. Sometimes the Officer-pattern head-dress badge is a totally different size or design to the hat badges worn by enlisted personnel.  This section deals with cap badges worn by ordinary soldiers, not officers.

    Lightweight Staybrite aluminium replaced brass and white metal as the main metal for British Other Ranks' military insignia from about 1950 onwards, although some regiments had sufficient stocks of the old metal cap badges and did not convert to Staybrite cap badges until many years later. This section of our website deals with badges made from more traditional metals.  Some more recent badges have reverted to being made from heavier, more durable metals and these heavier modern cap badges are also included in this section.

    During World War Two, many regiments and corps had cap badges made from plastic as a wartime economy measure - these are shown in a separate section for WW2 Bakelite cap badges.

    We also sell coloured regimental cap and beret badge backings - click for details

  • Bakelite Army Cap Badges

    WW2 Army plastic cap badges: Bakelite wartime economy issue for sale. World War II introduced the concept of 'Total War', where every activity in Britain was concentrated towards the 'war effort'. In order to 'save brass to make bullets', military cap badgesand buttons were made from a type of plastic called Bakelite. They were not popular with soldiers, who would often throw them away if they could get an older brass badge as a replacement. These plastic cap badges have now become quite rare. They can be accurately dated to WW2, only had short life-span and have become very collectable as a result.

    The word Bakelite comes from its inventor LH Baekeland (1863-1944).

  • Air Force Badges

    Royal Air Force cap badges for sale. 

    Most of our cap badges are from the UK and British Empire or British Commonwealth, but we occasionally have aviation insignia from other countries available to buy.

    When buying British insignia, many badges feature crowns and these can be a useful guide to identifying and dating them - King's Crowns are a different shape to Queen's Crowns.

    Another factor with purchasing Air Force badges is that the size and design of badge can vary depending on the rank of the wearer.  To make things a little more interesting, an airman might have different designs of cap badge for different types of head-dress, for example:

    • hat badges worn by Officers are different to those worn by Warrant Officers, which are also different to those worn by NCOs and ordinary airmen or women.
    • a beret badge is sometimes smaller than the equivalent cap badge worn on a peaked (visor) cap.
    • a side-hat badge is sometimes of a different design to the beret badge or cap badge.

    In general, the same hat badges were worn by various parts of the RAF, such as the WRAF (Women's Royal Air Force), RAF Regiment, RAuxAF (Royal Auxiliary Air Force), RAFR (Royal Air Force Reserve), RAFVR (Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve), and RAFVR(T) (Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve (Training)).  An exception is the two sizes of sew-on Staybrite cap badge which were only worn by the WRAF.

    We also stock Air Training Corps cap badges.

  • Royal Observer Corps

    Royal Observer Corps cap badges for sale. 

    The size and design Royal Observer Corps badge can vary depending on the rank of the wearer.  Ordinary Observers (as opposed to Observer Officers) tend to have White Metal or chrome-plated (silver coloured) cap badges.  Observer Officers had gilt (gold coloured) cap badges for the beret.  Royal Observer Corps Officers also had a different design of badge for the peaked (visor) cap, which was a mix of gilt metal and bullion wire embroidery.

    The crowns on ROC cap badges can be a useful guide to identifying and dating them - King's Crowns are a different shape to Queen's Crowns.

  • UK Police & Prison Hat Badges

    Genuine UK British and Northern Irish Police and Constabulary cap badges, helmet stars and helmet plates for sale to bona fide collectors. UK Prison Service hat badges are included in this section when in stock.

    We recommend the following reference book -

    Police Forces of Great Britain and Ireland - their Amalgamations and their Buttons. ISBN 0901718297: R Hazell and Co. (1983).

  • Fire and Rescue Service
    Fire and Rescue Service cap badges for sale.
  • Civil Defence
    Civil Defence cap badges for sale.