|BELT COLOURS - green and white|
The bands are 1 & 1/2cms wide. Though we are now known as 'B (NIH) Sqn - QOY', we are no longer allowed to wear them. Instead, we now have to wear the QOY stable belt, but seeing as we have to pay for the belts, the members of the squadron choose to wear the Sldr 95 belts and the older '58ptn web belts!
If you were to visit out TA centre here in Belfast, you wouldn't see the guys wearing any insignia to show we are NIH - we have absolutely no regimental identity at all!
When we became part of the QOY, we not only lost our stable belts, we lost our cap badge and shoulder titles too. The same happened to the Scottish Yeomanry. They lost everything, including their grey berets. Their cap badge incorporated the scottish crown, and was an all 'brass' cap badge!
I did put forward the idea that in being part of the QOY, could we keep our NIH slip-on cloth titles and wear the QOY cap badge so that we wouldn't lose our identity, and that it could also be done with the other squadrons, or failing that, we wear our own cap badges but wear the QOY slip-on cloth titles (same as when we were part of the Royal Yeomanry). Needless to say, nothing was ever heard!
The first exercise we did with the QOY over in scotland, was in the new galloway forests - we got eaten alive by midges! We went over with QOY cap badges in our berets, but 'at home' we wore our NIH cap badges. Our SQMS issued everyone going on the exercise with a badge, and said not to lose them. However, seeing that our unit was in the process of being 'shafted' by the QOY, we reluctantly wore them until we were on the boat home from stranraer on the sunday afternoon! No sooner had the ferry slipped it's moorings, when about 30 of us promptly threw the QOY cap badges over the side where they lie on the bottom of the harbour to this day!
We put our own cap badges back in. What we didn't know was that our SQMS wanted the QOY badges back the following wednesday! Upon being told what we'd done, he first went livid, then started laughing!! God knows how he explained the sudden need for another 30 odd cap badges from the QOY SQMS!
With thanks to Tim Weller