There are many reproduction Tyneside Scottish Badges currently doing the rounds, the most obvious fake is the 1st pattern circular badge made of brass. The original 1st pattern was only ever issued in white metal and was in service for a mere three months before being replaced by the larger more common device displaying the large cross of St.Andrew and the lion standing on two feet. It was never issued in brass, this is a later production that began to appear in the 90's. As the original 1st patterns were made locally on Tyneside and withdrawn so soon in the beginning of 1915 you have to ask the questions why there is a brass 'economy' issued, especially when the all brass economy issues only came into production in 1916! Further more the brass economies were made to shorten the production process of the bi-metal badges so why make one that is a singular metal already ?
A genuine 1st pattern TS cap badge is valued at the £120+ mark by most auction houses, a brass economy which would have to be 1000 times rarer would therefore be valued at double that !
Further clarification that the 1st pattern (and indeed all other patterns of TS badges) was never issued in brass can be found in the lack of identification in all the usual reference books, John Gaylors 'Military badge collecting' being the most widely available. Confirmation can also be found it the most excellent reference work by Colonel Denis Wood's 'the fifth fusiliers and its badges' published in 1988. Colonel Wood has been collecting badges to the NF as a whole for about 60 years and not one mention of any brass TS badges appears.
A similar abnormality appears among Tyneside Irish badges. The TI harp was only ever issued as a shoulder title and consequently has lugs E and W. Later issues lugs are placed N and S. They were never issued with a slider fitting, and never manufactured by Gaunt of London. The TI badge was made locally on Tyneside by local jewelers Reid & Son's, indeed the original issue for the first battalion has the words 'Reid & Sons, Newcastle-upon-Tyne on the rear. Some photographs show soldiers with the TI badge in their hat but this was totally unofficial. The correct cap badge for the TI is the standard Northumberland Fusiliers grenade.
Reproduction Tyneside Scottish badges
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16 August 2008
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