POLONICA in Scotland

Colours - Galashiels


Colours presented to the 9th 'Flanders' Rifles Battalion (9 batalion strzelców flandryjskich)

from the citizens of Galashiels.



9th Battalion collar flash


The battalion commander, Major Kazimierczak travelled to Galashiels from Germany to receive the new standard.


The battalion, formed on 5th November 1943, had from the 16th November 1943 been quartered in the old Abbots Mill in Galashiels before moving south to England in May 1944 and eventually crossing to France on the 1st August 1944. Since its formation it was part of the 3rd Rifle Brigade of the 1st Polish Armoured Division.

Polish troops had been based in Galashiels since early 1942.


Formation emblem of 1st Polish Armoured Division


On the 21st June 1946 a standard was presented to the battalion, a component of the 1st Polish Armoured Division, which was based in northern Germany as part of the Allied Occupation troops.


On the 9th July 1946 in the town of Leer in northern Germany in the presence of, amongst others, Polish Generals Rudnicki (Commander 1st Polish Armoured Division) and Dworak, General Galloway (British XXX Corps Commander) presented the new colours which were received by the battalion commander, Major Kazimierczak.


(Photo source: The Border Telegraph)  Galashiels - Presentation of the colours


The battalion disbanded in 1947 and the colours were deposited in the Polish Institute and General Sikorski Museum in London.


The traditions of the 9th Battalion (along with the 8th Battalion, nicknamed the "Bloody Shirts") were passed on to the modern Polish Army's 89th Mechanized Regiment, a component of the 11th Armoured Cavalry Division named after King John III Sobieski.



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Last modified 13 March 2009


© Copyright R M Ostrycharz 1998