The Combat Engineer

This is the second piece that we offer that features both screen printing and embroidery in the design. We are honouring Combat Engineers, also known as Sappers.

The Combat Engineer (also called field engineer, pioneer or sapper in many armies) is a soldier specialist who performs a variety of construction and demolition tasks under combat conditions.

The front of the shirt features an embroidered Bailey bridge over a river that has a few Windmills on it to acknowledge the Liberation of Holland. The Sapper shoulder patch is also embroidered.

F.Y.I. The Bailey bridge had the following characteristics: • Fully interchangeable, standardised parts • Heaviest component capable of a six man lift (600lbs) • Transportable in standard, 3 ton military trucks • Capable of various constructions to suit differing loading and span requirements • Easily assembled in the field (manually, with basic tools) • Capable of being launched from one side of a gap • Able to carry 40 tons • Capable of being strengthened "in position". Around 700,000 Bailey panels were produced during WW2, equating to approximately 350 miles of bridging. In North West Europe alone some 1,500 bridges (equating to more than 31 miles of decking) were constructed.

The back of the shirt reads like this.

A combat engineer is also trained as an infantryman, their role is to ensure that troops can live, move and fight on the battlefield while impeding those of the enemy.

Combat engineers build, repair and maintain buildings, roads and power supplies. They employ explosives for construction and demolition projects, and clear minefields using specialized vehicles. Such tasks typically include constructing and breaching trenches, tank traps and other fortifications, bunker construction, bridge and road construction or destruction, laying or clearing land mines, and other physical work in the battlefield such as:

We added sticks of dynamite to emphasize their demolition prowess.

• Clearing terrain obstacles • Overcoming trenches and ditches • Opening routes for armored fighting vehicles • Constructing roads and bridges • Route clearance • Planting land mines • Digging trenches and ditches • Demolishing roads and bridges • Clearing fields of land mines • Demolition • Building fortifications • Building outposts • Building fences • Defense against weapon threats

The quote says it all:

The difficult we do at once; the impossible takes a bit longer!

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