Scots at War 

"Where history comes to life"


Quartermaster's Store

The uniform and equipment supplied to keep the soldier in the field, ready to fight, clean, fed and watered.

Web Equipment

1908 Pattern

One belt, three inches (76 mm) wide
Two braces, two inches (51 mm) wide
Two cartridge pouch sets, each set consisting of 5 pouches and each pouch holding three 5-round charger clips; 150 rounds of rifle ammunition in total.
One bayonet frog (a tubular carrier which connected the bayonet scabbard to the belt)
One water bottle and carrier
One haversack
One pack
Two pack straps
One entrenching tool with separate carriers for the head and helve.


Glengarries, Caps, Tam O' Shanters, Balmorals, Atholl Bonnets, the Brodie and Pith Helmets 

Headgear worn by Scottish soldiers in the Great War


Top half

Tunic, shirt, jerkin, greatcoat

The majority of soldiers wore an outwardly similar uniform, with the exception of 'Highlanders' with their kilt, the basic kit was a khaki serge single-breasted four-pocket jacket with a stand and fall collar, which was cut away at the front for Scottish troops.
Lighter uniforms were issued for hotter climates, such as Gallipoli, ironically, it was very cold there in Winter.

In winter soldiers might wear greatcoats, long serge coats which were very warm, or leather jerkins, which were originally intended to be worn under the jacket for warmth, but which proved very popular as a waterproof outer layer.

Bottom half

Trousers, kilt, hose, puttees, hob nail boots

Hard wearing and practical as they were,  the trousers, and underwear won beneath could make a man incredibly hot and itchy. On a cold day though you would be glad of them.

The kilt, worn by Highland soldiers, was surprisingly warm, however the pleats provided the perfect place for lice to lay their eggs. Mud also tended to dry on the hem and cut the soldiers' legs as they marched.

Puttees, a Hindi word  were a covering for the lower part of the leg from the ankle to the knee. It consisted of a long narrow piece of cloth wound tightly and spirally round the leg, and serving to provide both support and protection. It was worn by both mounted and dismounted soldiers.

1908 Pattern Web Equipment

The 1908 equipment, when fully assembled, formed a single piece and could be put on or taken off like a jacket. Ammunition was stored in two sets of pouches attached to the belt at the front, and the straps from these passed over the shoulders, crossing diagonally at the back. The back pack, or "valise", was attached to these diagonal straps, thus spreading its weight.

1903 Pattern Leather Equipment

The earlier 1903 webbing had much more leather items, it was not as practical or popular as the 1908 webbing,but remained in service with 2nd Line TF and other home service units.

Haversack and contents

The haversack was carried  by the soldier either on the left hand side hanging from the belt when in marching order, or on the back when in battle order.  Inside  the soldier normally carried all his personal items like hard rations, washing kit, rifle cleaning kit, spare socks and writing equipment.  




Over 3,000,000  tons of food was sent from Britain to the soldiers fighting in France and Belgium during the Great War. Soldiers  were critical of the quantity and the quality of food they received. The bulk of their diet in the trenches was bully beef (canned corned beef, good quality mead), bread and biscuits. Hard tack biscuits were basically inedible when dry, rock hard tooth breakers, they needed soaked in water to make a porridge, or in meat juice to bulk out meals.

Don't believe us? Try it for yourself, here's a recipe for Hard Tack. Remember do not try to bite through them when dry, you will break your teeth!

Hard Tack biscuits

Mix the flour, water and salt together, and make sure the mixture is fairly dry.

Then roll it out to about 1/2 inch thickness, and shape it into a rectangle. Cut it into 3×3 inch squares, and poke holes in both sides.

Place on an un-greased  baking sheet, and cook for 30 minutes per side at 190 C 

When it’s done, you’ll want to let it dry and harden for a few days, just out in the open. When it has the consistency of a brick, it’s fully cured. 

Then simply store it in an airtight container or bucket. To prepare for eating, soak it in water or milk for about 15 minutes, and then fry in a mess tin.  It should keep for oh...a century or so.


While a soldier's kit was issued by the army, officers had to buy theirs at private expense, albeit with an allowance from the army. 
For an infantry officer, this consisted of the 'Sam Browne' equipment, which carried a sword, revolver and ammunition, as well as a water bottle, a pair of field glasses, a map and compass, wire cutters, a whistle, a wrist watch, and a greatcoat.
A haversack contained the officer's rations, as well as any other kit which might be required.

In addition, each officer was allowed up to 35 lbs of baggage to be carried in the battalion's transport. This included his valise (a hold-all which also functioned as a sleeping bag), spare uniform, washing and shaving equipment, and writing materials. A folding lantern or torch and a copy of the Field Service Pocket Book were also compulsory purchases.