Battle Scars Worn With Pride

The Wound Stripe is a British military award introduced in 1916 to honour soldiers wounded in battle during the Great War. These stripes, worn on the left sleeve of the uniform, became a symbol of bravery and endurance.

Initially, the stripes were made with gold Russian braid, but this proved impractical for soldiers as they required sewing onto the uniform and were difficult to keep clean. In response, an all-brass version was created for durability and ease of maintenance. Another variant included a zinc backing plate, which might have been a cost-saving measure or a response to material shortages during the war.

For collectors, the Wound Stripe offers a tangible link to World War I. It represents the personal sacrifices of individual soldiers, as reflected in the variations of the stripes’ materials and design.

Photographs from the era bring these stories to life, showing the individuals and the hospital staff who played vital roles in the war. Each stripe and photo is not just a collectible; it’s a piece of history, a remembrance of the trials faced and the resilience shown in life-threatening situations.