601. Cap - short bear skin, or black raccoon skin -
For officers not exceeding 5ft 6in in height, 8 inches high in front
(followed by other size info)
A grenade in front, with a badge on the ball; burnished chain, lined with black velvet and leather.
Dress regs goes on to describe all badges worn, and the entry for the RWF (and other Fusilier regiments) confirms the badge as being a grenade. The entry for the plume (i.e. the correct name for the fuilier hackle) is:
602. Plume- Northumberland Fusiliers, red and white hackle feather, 4.5 inches high, the red above; worn on the left side: gilt two flame socket. Royal Irish Fusiliers, green cut feather, 6.5 inches high.
Note that the Royal Welsh Fusiliers did not wear the plume at this time. The wearing of a plume with the full dress headgear was extended to all fusilier regiments in the early 20th Century (I think after service in the South African War?). The very early 20th Century, was also the first time the plume was worn behind the badge with a piece of undress headgear by fusilier regiments, namely the 'slouch hat', which the British Army briefly adopted (thereafter usually the mark of an Australian soldier).
If you wish, I can scan and post photographs of RWF soldiers in the 1870s and early 1900s showing the fact that the plume was introduced later.
"The Flash", of course, worn on the back of the collar, is a trademark distinction of the RWF, stemming from a dress irregularity. As the regiment was stationed in Canada, and did not adopt new dress regulations, they were still wearing their hair long. In simple terms, it's a pony-tail ribbon
I'll ask my next door neighbour next time I see him, as He served as honorary colonel of the Royal Welch Fusiliers, from 2005 to 2007 and prior to that He was Commanding Officer of the 1st Bn The Royal Welsh Fusiliers in Gorazde in 1995.
Whatever its just an opinion.
Jerry, beautiful tunic! Congrats on a fine acquisition. Thumbs up all the way
All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.
"Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne
Rob, I have the dress regs you mention and there is no dispute from me about the actual regs. You are right about the matter being espirit de corps, but I think this is no less valid being a regimental tradition than regs and research is, in fact I consider traditions like this important research. I will tell my son next time we talk about out conversation here. Perhaps he will have some input about the matter to post here. As it stands, the plume or hackle as he calls it represents fusil smoke to him and the other members of his battalion and probably has done for some time.