The Armourer - May 2023

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On the cover we look at how combined arms operations proved to be devastatingly effective as Hitler sent the tanks and troops into neutral Netherlands, beginning the war in Western Europe.

On Sale: 04/04/2023

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What's in this Issue?


What the Editor has to say about this month’s issue as we look at the combined arms assault by the German Army into the Low Countries, starting with the Netherlands.

What’s happening in the world of militaria shows, museums and exhibitions. This month we’re reporting on all the news from the Chalke Valley History Festival, floating museum HMS Caroline is to open, and what’s happening at this year’s Tankfest.


In the sale rooms
Here's a look at what's coming up for auction with the Third Reich militaria on offer at Ratisbon’s 54th Contemporary Auction and an interesting selection of militaria items up at Huntly in Aberdeenshire.

Under the hammer
Let’s have a look at what’s gone under the hammer in auction rooms, with badges and militaria at Bosleys and Luftwaffe flying jackets and boots at Ratisbon’s.

Festival Diary 2023
Want to know where to go and what to see this year? Check out our annual Diary of fairs, events and shows for what’s coming up in the world of military history and collecting this year.


WWI webbing: Belgium
Edward Hallett continues his series on Great War personal equipment by looking at the small country of Belgium and the problems it had supplying the troops, leading to some interesting mixes of gear.

Women’s Home Defence
When the call went out in WWII for volunteers for a home militia no-one in power expected women to answer the call as well. But they did, leading to the creation of a variety of organisation, many of them technically illegal.

An umbrella at Arnhem
Remember that madcap Englishman at the Arnhem bridge, walking along with an umbrella as German fire rained down? That was Major Digby Tatham Warter DSO and this is his story.

South Africa medal and clasps
Peter Duckers investigates the British award and a range of clasps, some very rare, from a century of frontier wars in Africa.

British Navy Trawlers
Rather than sit in port these were the British Trawlers that got in on the action in WWII, hauling in German mines and helping track down U-Boats, as Mark Wood explains.

Italian Armaguerra Modello M1939
Michael Heidler has the story of Italy’s semi-automatic rifle and how it became a missed opportunity for the hard-pressed Italian army.

Germanic Proficiency Rune
It was an award for Germanic peoples to make them feel more involved and part of the greater German Reich, but it was fiendishly difficult to qualify for and consequently is widely faked.

Russian muskets and Fort Ross
Graham Priest has the story of Russian trappers and traders and their stronghold in North America before politics and economics caused it to fall into disuse.

The Photo Inspector
Ray Westlake looks at the uniforms and insignia of a Private of the 1st Volunteer Battalion Northamptonshire Regiment.


Graham Caldwell explains how geography placed neutral Netherlands squarely within Hitler’s revised Plan Yellow for the conquest of Belgium and France.

Collecting the invasion of Holland
Edward Hallet takes a look at the collectables from the German Blitzkrieg into the Low Countries that started with the Netherlands.


Militaria book reviews
Duncan Evans is on hand to guide you through the latest releases which this month include Berlin Blitz; Blood, Dust and Snow; 100 Greatest Battles and The Porsche Tiger and Ferdinand Tank Destroyer.

Letters/Next month
Here is what you’ve been writing in about this month which includes Polish secret air missions, the method of executing troublemakers from the Indian Mutiny, as discussed last month, and which tank is best.

Auction & Fair Diary
Check out the online arrangements for the auctions where you can top up your militaria collection and what fairs are open.

Thanks to our friends at Osprey Publishing we have prizes for two winners, who will get copies of Panzer Reconnaissance, 100 Greatest Battles and Elizabeth’s Navy.


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