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DateOriginal Topic
4th April 2005Uniforms
By Colum O'Rourke
What was the officer's uniform in the NNC like?
Was it like Lt Harford and Vereker's in Zulu Dawn or like Adendorff's in Zulu
4th April 2005Chris
It was more like Andendorff in Zulu, though it varied according to the individual officer.
9th April 2005Coll

I prefer to think their uniforms were like Adendorff's in Zulu, a mixture of military and civilian type clothing.

There has been a fair amount of criticism of the uniforms shown in Zulu Dawn and for all I like this movie, I really didn't like the uniform worn by Lt. Vereker, it just didn't seem right.

9th April 2005Colum
I agree. It wasn't quite as nice as the uniforms worn by the officers of the 1/24 and 2/24 though. Adendorff's had that colonial look to it. But I say the hat and pugaree and the dusty black tunic gave a superb touch to it. Would you agree?
10th April 2005Coll

I really thought the red tunics of the 24th were very impressive the way they stood out against the Zulu landscape, but I like the uniforms of other units and Col. Durnford's in particular, which I have mentioned several times previously.

The mixture of military and civilian type clothing used by these other irregular units appealed to me immensely, as well as the likes of the Natal Carbineers and Natal Mounted Police, etc., who wore much more in the way of military uniforms, but obviously varied in style or colour, etc.

Unfortunately, developments in warfare, meant that soldiers have been issued with combat uniforms (camouflage) to guard against standing out too much on the battlefield, or other clothing which blends with their surroundings.

It is practical, and we are talking about men's lives after all, but I feel there really isn't much difference these days between armies and their combat clothing, unlike the days of the AZW and back to the Napoleonic era, etc., which is a shame, as the uniforms significant colours and styles have changed beyond recognition, from a time when forces were very easily identified, allies and enemy, to all basically looking quite similar, adding confusion, I feel, into battles that are confusing and frightening to begin with, never mind the addition of less recognisable units.

Apart from ceremonial duties and parades etc., like Trooping the Colour, or the re-enactment groups that remind us of how good the uniforms were, the fantastic styles and colours of military styles long since past, will no longer be seen on a modern battlefield, as I say, for obvious reasons.

When you see the film Waterloo, or any of the AZW films, etc., especially on a large scale, a mixture of infantry, cavalry and artillery, it really does look brilliant and I think these are the sort of movies which stay in our memories, when we saw them as children, just by the sheer colour and scale of it all, absolutely magnificent.