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Author Topic: The Uniforms Act 1894  (Read 1564 times)
Mercury Wells
Rogue Ætherlord
I insiste that you do call me WELLS. :)

« on: June 09, 2014, 02:00:52 am »

I'm currently watching on Yesterday about Carnaby Street undressed and The Uniforms Act 1894 was mentioned, would that still bearing on any SPer that dresses in a "Military Style" at a meet...say Lincoln
Logged old war wound? I got that at The Battle of Dorking. Very nasty affair that was, I can tell you.

The Ministry of Tea respectfully advises you to drink one cup of tea day...for that +5 Moral Fibre stat.
Siliconous Skumins
Server Monk
Rogue Ætherlord
United Kingdom United Kingdom

« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2014, 05:13:48 am »

This is one of those laws which you only 'break' when you do something stupid. Basically it's there to allow action to be taken against anyone pretending to be genuine military / naval personell, or committing an act that seriously disrespects the forces in some manner. Similar to the laws about dressing up like, and claiming to be a police officer. As long as it's not a deliberate attempt to impersonate, commit an illegal act, or to attempt to bring shame on the forces, then it's unlikely you will have a problem - don't forget it's perfectly legal to sell and wear police and military styled party / halloween costumes...  Wink

Besides, the steampunk style military uniform is typically an outdated one that is no longer worn in general use (exceptfor certain 'full dress' events), and often heavily modified. Also the uniforms and insignia do not relate to any genuine regimental unit, eg the 'Third Foot and Mouth'.

[Server Prayer]
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Snr. Officer
France France

« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2014, 08:57:41 am »

The wording of the law makes it very clear that the purpose is to prevent people from imitating members of the armed services.

If you were to wear a uniform and use that to gain admission to a military base, to park a vehicle in a space reserved for armed forces personnel, or to gain authority over some other person, then you could be charged under that law even if you had not in fact broken any other law (if you had, for example, failed to gain authority over some person or thing).

If, for example,  you were to dress up in an authentic uniform of the South Wales Borderers as worn at Rorke's Drift, I don't think you could be charged under the 1894 act because the regiment no longer exists (since 1969) and no reasonable person would mistake you for an active serviceman from the fact of wearing the 1879 uniform.

Rory B Esq BSc
Snr. Officer
United Kingdom United Kingdom

« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2014, 01:17:52 pm »

The 'get out' clause is that it is allowed for 'performances', and since the act was passed that has extended to include 'street theater' and 'audience participation' so not only do steampunks tend not to wear current uniforms but just the fact that someone may take video of you on their phone makes you exempt.

A similar exemption applies in the UK for weapons, it would actually be perfectly legal to give a demonstration of a Gatling gun without a firearms license as part of a 'theatrical performance', which is a rather disturbing thought. Doing that could make people spill their tea.

Zeppelin Captain
United States United States

« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2014, 05:57:28 am »

Wearing modern military uniforms with insignia should be avoided, even if it's not strictly illegal in your jurisdiction. It can be embarrassing.

Some years ago, I saw a young blonde woman in San Francisco wearing a naval officer's white jacket with insignia in the Broadway nightclub district. She made the mistake of doing this during Fleet Week, when a carrier group was in San Francisco harbor and the sailors were on leave. She came face to face with a U.S. Navy captain. The captain wore a similar jacket, but with his grey crewcut, rows of ribbons, and two junior officers alongside, it was clear he was the captain of a U.S. Navy ship. He didn't say a word. He just looked at the young woman. She turned and ran.

Rogue Ætherlord
United States United States

"This is the sort of thing no-one ever believes"

« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2014, 04:00:32 am »

For similar reasons I waited until the US Army stopped using their black beret before I started wearing one in a "flat cap" style (using the flash panel for a bill, etc.) It is not for "military" reenactment or impersonation, but just because I like berets, and had not (until quite recently) found a basque style beret - the kind that's larger than a military beret (in some sizes very much larger), floppy, and has no flash panel. I had been making my own until then; Several of my relatives have been in various branches of service and worn flash panel berets, so I felt a bit leery of doing so without being in the military.

The Boy Scout Uniform at the time I went through and got my Eagle had the red beret as a standard cover, but I'd feel a bit iffy about wearing a red beret because I believe it is still worn by a military organization (the Boy Scouts have adopted gimme caps of all things these days).

Wearing current required military uniform parts as everyday wear is fine for other folks, but I don't like wearing anything that is still in use by anybody, which is why I snapped up the basque when I finally found one that didn't look like a ladies' "tam." The US Army might not be using them anymore, but I still feel self-conscious about it.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2014, 04:06:21 am by MWBailey » Logged

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Zeppelin Admiral
United States United States

« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2015, 03:44:10 am »

This article discusses what one should and shouldn't do in pursuit of their Steampunk cosplay, and for that reason I will be submitting a recommendation that this thread be moved to "Anatomical".
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