Help with Corps history

I found my stable belt the other day and like you do try it on to see if it would fit, well it did and well chuffed the my waist hadn't grown toooooo much :D :D , thought I would show my boy, he asked me about the Corp's colours on the belt and why those particular ones, I don't know :oops: so would some one please help me out
If my memory serves me correctly, i believe it is meant to represent bridges of steel over rivers of blood.

This is all the museum has:

Stable Belt - A Corps stable belt was approved by the Engineer-in-Chief in 1958. The belt has five coloured strips running horizontally one above the other. The colours and their proportions are: Red 4/32, Blue 5/32, Red 14/32. Blue 5/32 and Red 4/32.
megadeth said:
FOSSIL said:
If my memory serves me correctly, i believe it is meant to represent bridges of steel over rivers of blood.

true , and you probably wont find any other answer . :eek:
Didnt think the brain cells were working so well.


When serving with personnel from other regiments, the following was often quoted at us, to describe our stable belt colours -

Blue - is the colour of the river you should have crossed
Red - is the colour of the blood you should have spilled
Yellow - is the colour why you didn't!
I was once informed by a drilly at Chatham the the blue stripes represent to rivers the were bridged during WW2 (I think) and the red the blood that was spilled in doing so. Sounds plausable.
looks like its just not me then, no definitive answer, but thanks everyone so far for trying :wink: :wink: going to email the Corp's museum to see if they can help
I think it could be more of a case of colours that have been taken from something - god knows what like! Maybe old uniform colours?(maybe forget that idea if it was introduced in the 50's hehehe)(i was told of the bridges over the river thing) If you look at the actual colour of the stripes on a Corps tie and compare it to the colours of let's say the HCav or even the Arty the colours are nearly the same (When i say colours i mean spectrum, not flags! :wink: )

The RTR colours on their stable belt - Brown/Red(Crimson?)/Green have a similar saying to the RE one - Through the Mud,The Blood and the Green fields beyond - i believe? Is this not something soldiers have made up over time? Can't wait to find out by the way!!! hehehe :D
On the old RE website, in the history I recall seeing a small picture taken from the Bayeux Tapestry, and in it was a small bloke, riding a horse, carrying a flag with the stable belt colours on it, and I assumed this was were it was from, ie the standard bearer of ol' Gundulf himself, or his batman, or something.
I got the reply from the Corp's museum today and they themselves don't know.
Here's the email

Dear Mr Blind662

We have been asked this question many times and I am afraid there is no reason as to why red and blue. The colours are just the colours!

I hope this helps.


Office Manager

RE Museum

So will the mystery ever be solved ?????????? and thanks to everyone for your help :wink:
I always thought it was based on the old RAOC colours as lots sappers were so keen t be mistaken for Ammunition Technicians or so I was told. Thinking about it and having served with a few sappers, I can understand why.
The original REs (officers don’t you know) wore Blue uniforms. However during the Peninsular wars this could be confused with the French. The RE officers therefore adopted the Red jackets of the Ordinance/Wagon train lot.
Thus we have Red and Blue as the given colours of the Corps.

This information is available on the Corps History CDs.

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