Australian Police Badge History from Ozbadge

N.S.W. Police Force














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New South Wales Police Force
NSW Metropolitan Police, NSW Police, NSW Police Department and NSW Police Service badge history. Note: The State arms, seal and name "New South Wales (N.S.W) Police Force" are Copyright  State of New South Wales, Australia.

HRH "The Queen's Crown" ("Saint Edward's Crown") is Copyright  The Royal Household and its use granted solely by Royal Warrant.

 
T he first official badge of the New South Wales Police Force:








































nswp1.jpg

This is the beautiful, intricately engraved, New South Wales Police, "roundel" helmet plate c 1870. The badge is "shellbacked" and fully die struck. * N.S.W. Police first and possibly Australia's oldest and rarest "custom made" helmet plate / Police badge. Known to be issued to "sworn" NSW Police on duty, as the Governor's Mounted Escort. Only two of the original examples are thought to have survived. One is on display at the Justice and Police Museum in The Rocks, Sydney.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Queen Victoria Crown "VR" cypher NSW Police Helmet plate. Circa 1880.
Most likely the first helmet plate style issued and worn by both the "mounted" and the "foot" police; on a blue helmet, with white "pugaree", for the mounted police and on a plain white helmet for the foot police. The design came from a London "Metropolitan Police" helmet plate, issued at around the same time. They were made and issued in "blackened" brass for "Night Duty"; which would normally wear off with use (and unofficial polishing}. This "Sterling Silver" and later "white metal" plate (right) is therefore * One of the Rarest.; as they were only issued to the Inspector General and a select group of about 10 Senior Officers. Although none are hallmarked, due to their thinness, the maker of the earlier Queen Victoria (VR) and Edward 7th (EVII R) NSW Police Helmet plates was JR Gaunt and Son, Birmingham, UK. The George 5th (GvR) and likely Edward 8th (EVIIII R) plates were probably made locally in Australia; notice the incorrect use of the "Queen Victoria" style Crown on these later two plates. which should have had the "King's" crown and also note the inaccurate style of cyphers that were used on these plates.
N.B: Some very well made replicas were made by Ozbadge in 2005, under NSW Police licence; as framed replica sets. These replicas (even the old cast replicas) are slightly smaller than the originals. A small "Oz" plate / "bug" is soldered on the back near the crown.
* FYI. The original  plates were fully die struck from almost "paper thin" metal and should weigh just under 20 grams (0.7 ounce). The QVC versions should be 100mm in height.
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswe7aoka.jpg

 
 
NSW Police, King Edward 7th, King's Crown "EVII R" cypher, helmet plate. Issued c1901 to 1910. Maker: J.R. Gaunt and Sons, Ltd. London.
Extremely Rare.
 
Please Note:
During the late 1800's, Commissioned Officers wore many variations of a QVC "style bullion crown" on their kepis.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswp1915capbadge.jpg

 
The NSW Police "Silver" "1915" Cap Badge. First version. A small badge based on the "helmet plate" style designed for use with the newly issued military style forage caps. Issued for a very short time during 1915/16 and then replaced by the "skeleton" series; probably due its small size and maybe also because of its "illegal" use of the Royal Garter; which surrounds the NSW Coat of Arms. It is made of un hallmarked silver and is "shellbacked" i.e., fully "die struck".
.* One of the Rarest.
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswkcocdstilver.jpg

 
NSW Police, King's Crown, Commissioner's or Senior Commissioned Officer's cap badge; with the very large padded crown. Hand made. Hallmarked with the makers initials, "SILVER" and "AMOR".
c 1916  * One of the Rarest.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswpqcofficerspadded.jpg

 
 
NSW Police Queen's Crown Commissioner's or Senior Commissioned Officer's chromed cap badge; with the large, padded crown. Hand made. c 1953 - 1972. Very Rare. Versions were made in Sterling Silver and are  Extremely Rare.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswskeletondecal.jpg

 
NSW Police "skeleton" style reflective badge decal for motorcycle helmets and rescue squad helmets. Made by 3M . C 1954 - 1972. Rare.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

frontnswpprototype.jpg

 
The original "mock-up" of the current style of NSW Police badges.
Although the new insignia or logo was designed and adopted for various official uses in 1959, the cap badge was not designed until 1969. This new insignia was designed by Norman A. Merchant (D.I.) originally for use on "table name cards" for the 1959 Commissioner's Conference. This original mock up of the badge was purchased at the AMOR Archives auction. It is built upon an old QC skeleton badge. Notice the suggested badge name change to NSW Police "Department". Apparently, only two original mockups were ever made; one is in a private collectors hands, the other with the NSW Police. 
* One of the Rarest.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
NSW Parking Police and Patrol.

nswparkingpolicekcqc.jpg

The NSW "Parking Police" were formed in 1945 as "Special Constables" of the NSW Police "Department"; not the NSW Police "Force", who were "sworn police".
The "Parking Police" designation was changed to NSW Parking "Patrol" in 1985. This then became an organisation of "unsworn", civilian employees and was totally disbanded and made defunct in 2003; with local councils assuming their duties.
 
The NSW Police "Department" and the NSW Police "Force" were amalgamated in 1990.
 
The King's Crown skelton style badges are Very Rare, the Queen's Crown Parking Police skeleton badges are Rare and the "Parking Patrol Officer" badge is Rare. .
 
 
 
 
 

nswparkinghatgreen1.jpg

NSW Parking Patrol officer cap badge. Disbanded in 2003. Scarce






nswpdalton1876.jpg

Early "carte de visite" photograph of Sergeant Charles Dalton of the N.S.W. Police Governor's Escort in full ceremonial uniform (based on the 8th Hussar's uniform). "Curly Brim" style helmet with horse hair "plume" and N.S.W. Police "roundel" helmet plate on it, next to him.  Photograph by William Freeman. c 1876.
 
* This is probably the earliest known photo of any NSW Police officer in uniform. Ozbadge thanks Alan Davies and the State Library of New South Wales.   Ozbadge.
 
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nsw2.jpg

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswpgrplateaok.jpg

NSW Police, King George 5th, "GvR" style cypher, helmet plate issued from c1911 and may have been worn by some officers up to 1935 (it was a common practice in those days, for some senior officers to continue to wear older, outdated style plates and badges, to denote seniority). Probably made locally in Australia. Note the incorrect use of the "Queen Victoria" crown and inaccurate cypher on this original issued plate. Extremely Rare.
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswp1915capbadgevoided.jpg

The NSW Police "1915" Cap Badge; the "voided" 2nd version, with triangular lugs. The "voiding" was an attempt to make it stand out more than the original (see left). A small, unhallmarked silver badge designed for use with the newly issued military style forage caps during 1915/16. 2nd version. Issued for a very short time in 1915 and then replaced by the "skeleton" series; probably due to its small size but maybe also because of its "illegal" use of the Royal Garter, which surrounds the NSW Coat of Arms. It is a fully die struck badge.
* One of the Rarest.
 
 
 
 
 

nswpkcofficers1.jpg

The NSW Police, King's Crown, "Commissioned Officer's" cap badge. c 1916. Each badge was diestruck and then each letter was cut out by hand with a jewellers saw; after the initial stamping. Early,  Extremely Rare versions were made of solid, "Sterling Silver". Most of these were hallmarked by Amor and held onto by senior officers to denote their "seniority", as only "white metal" versions were issued from c 1926; now Very Rare. From the mid 1930's to c1954, Rare "chrome plated" versions (as above) were issued. *A one of a kind, "Gold plated" version was made for Commmissioner Scott (1948-1952).
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswqcofficersaok1.jpg

 
NSW Police Queen's crown chromed  "Officer's" Cap badge.
Each letter was cut out and finished by hand with a jewellers saw after it was pressed. Very Rare. c 1953-1972.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswppolicecadetvoided1.jpg

 
 NSW Police "skelton" style Cadet chromed cap badge. c 1959-1972. Rare. The NSW Police cadets were an elite corp formed in 1933 by Superintendent W.J.McKay (who became Commissioner McKay in 1935). Pre 1960, a Very Rare "skeleton style" set, consisting of a voided "POLICE" and a "CADET"  badge, were worn on opposing lapels (instead of numbers). In the late 1960's, the Scarce oval shaped, black enamel and chrome "Police Cadet" epaulette badges (pair) were issued.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswp-_bishop1.jpg

The NSW Police Force "Bishop made" cap badge. Introduced in circa 1970.
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This was the first, issued, version (of now around 17 versions) of the current metal, cap and ID badge; issued by the NSW Police Force. Unfortunately, this first issue looked like it may have been "hand painted" on a pewter style metal and had thin, wire type lugs; it is now considered an Extremely Rare badge. There were another 2 Very Rare versions of these "W.Bishop" made series of cap badges, before the contract was returned to the badge maker "Amor" (Sydney) in 1971, The designer of the badge was apparently, SGT. Norman A. MERCHANT'  (later an Inspector of the then Scientific Branch) who originally designed the badge as a logo for table "name cards", under direction of Commissioner DELANEY, for the 1956 "Commissioner's Conference" ; and who apparently wanted a more impressive NSW Police Department "logo" to be used. The "second" issued version of the "Bishop" made badge still looked "hand painted", but was made of a better looking "chromed" type metal and had thicker "lugs", The "third version" used, what looks like, "hard - fired enamel" and also looked the "quality" of the current style badge. There was also an early badge made around this time with the word "Department"; replacing or co-existing with the "Force" badge.
In c1971, the contract was returned to the Sydney badge maker, "Amor", (W.J.Amor Pty.Ltd, aka Amor-Sanders until 1996), who began making their own version of the "curved" cap badge and also started making the first "flat", ID wallet badge, to be used with the NSW Police Force photographic "Warrant Card" . These ID badges featured unique, 3 screw, wallet fittings and were fitted over plastic, colour coded rank backings. These earlier badges, by the original "Amor" badge maker, are now Rare badges. In 1990, the word "FORCE" was removed from all badges and all insignia; by order of Commissioner AVERY.
Other makers of this style of badge, in the previous "Force" and the now obsolete "Police" only, versions over the years, have included: Swann & Hudson, Cash's and currently, Miller's. There was also an Extremely Rare, and very slightly curved, "Pipe Band" version with three screw lugs and hand numbered, made by AMOR; specifically designed and made from a separate die, for the Glengarry cap. There is also an Extremely Rare "mistake" version, with black emamel "fill" (instead of red) within the N.S.W. State "badge" emblem on an an issued "Force" badge; made by the original "Amor" (Sydney).
 
UPDATES FOR THIS BADGE:
 
i) In 2002, all new "NEW SOUTH WALES POLICE" cap and ID badges, made by Miller's Sydney, were "serial numbered" on the reverse.
 
ii) Under the direction of Commissioner K.E. Moroney AO APM, the NSW Police reverted to the name "NSW Police FORCE" for use on all insignia; from February 1st, 2007.
 
iii)  A slightly revised and elongated NEW SOUTH WALES POLICE FORCE cap and ID badge were introduced in 2008; made by Miller's Sydney and "serial numbered" on the back.
 
iv) A prototype, "gold", badge (5) was made in 2010 for evaluation by the NSW Police Force "State Crime Command", intended for use by DETECTIVES, but has not yet been approved or issued. Apparently, an unauthorised fake or replica (40) of a "gold", Detective type badge has also been made, but with incorrect, corporate design, "deviations" and a lighter blue enamel. These badges may be numbered on the back (0001-0040?) and are not maker marked. Email: fake@ozbadge.com; if you require any further information or confirmation.
 
v) In June 2011, a shiny gold, N.S.W. "Special Constable", ID badge was apparently issued to some NSWPF "Security" personnel. It was apparently "recalled" just two weeks later; due to NSWPF "protocol" disapproving of it.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswpmetalwingsissued.jpg

NSW Police Force Pilots Wings. Issued. c 1979. Rare.

(For the Police "Wings" page just click here!)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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nswpday.jpg

Inspector General E.C. Day c 1911.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswper8ok.jpg

NSW Police, Edward 8th, "EVIII R" style cypher Helmet plate. Edward 8th ruled for only one year in 1936 and abdicated, before being crowned. Probably made locally in Australia. Extremely Rare. 
Note the use of the incorrect, "Queen Victoria" type crown and also the inaccurate cypher. Was this an earlier, King Edward 7th (c1901) plate, that was "withdrawn", because of the inaccurate cypher and "Queen Victoria" crown? If so, why would the exact, same mistakes be made on a "later" GvR (c1911) plate (left)? Issued, but not widely, or for long.
 
 
 
 
 

nswp1915pressing.jpg

A plaque mounted, untrimmed, "pressing" of the NSW Police "1915" Cap Badge. A small badge based on the "helmet plate" style designed for use with the newly issued military style forage caps. Issued for a short time and then replaced by the skelton badges. It was die struck from un hallmarked silver.
* One of the Rarest.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswpkcskeleton.jpg

The NSW Police King's Crown Cap badge. Known as the  "skeleton" badge or "anchor" badge was introduced in c 1916. The earlier badges were stamped from SOLID BRASS and "nickel plated" and were introduced as a cap badge only. They were also utilised as a helmet badge in later years. After the mid 1930's, they were chrome plated. The cap badge has two lugs; the helmet badge has three. Most were made by AMOR (Sydney); some were made by K.G. Luke (Melb.) and were hallmarked. Scarce.  c 1916 - 1954.
Some officer's continued to wear these badges after to 1952 to denote their "seniority".  Note: The original badges were NOT known to be marked "AMOR" and should have a rectangular "brace bar" on the back; so be aware of "replicas". Rumour has it that the "patee and orb" above the crown was removed to denote membership of the "Freemonsary".
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswqcskeleton.jpg

NSW Police Queen's Crown "skeleton" chrome plated Cap or Helmet badge. Scarce. The cap badge has two lugs with brace bar; the helmet badge has three lugs and a brace bar. c 1953-1972. Note: Be aware of replicas.
An oval shaped, black enamel and chrome "NSW Police" epaulette badge (pair) was also issued. Also Scarce.
 
 
 

nswpskeletonbandredandwhite.jpg

NSW Police "skeleton" style Band cap badge. These badges are hand painted enamel on a bare, brass metal base. c 1955-1972. Very Rare.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

nswjuniortrainee.jpg

 
The NSW Police "Junior Trainee" even had a cap badge. There were only about 18 uniformed "Trainees" in the short time this badge was issued and only 30 badges struck by the Department. Extremely Rare. c1975.
More recently, this style of cap badge and/or ID badge has been used in a "Student Police Officer" version, a "NSW Police Security Officer" version, a "NSW Transit Police" version, a green enameled " Parking Patrol Officer" version (see below left) and various NSW Government agencies (using the NSW State Government "Coat of Arms" in the centre); such as Fisheries and Agriculture Inspectors.
These later, but now mostly obsolete versions, are considered Scarce. There are also current, "NSW Police / Force Special Constable" cap/hat versions and flat ID wallet version; the later apparently made by Miller's and normally serial numbered on the back of the badges (not shown).