ANZAC Elite: The airborne and special forces insignia of Australia and New Zealand
Authors: Cliff Lord and Julian Tennant
Format: 297 x 210 mm portrait, hardcovered with laminated colour cover
Weight: 890 grams
An all-colour reference book to all the badges and insignia worn by the elite troops of the two countries, past and present. Includes brief histories of the units with some photographs, in both colour and black and white. Over 700 colour illustrations.
"The authors must be praised for producing what I believe is a first of its kind. For people like myself who have served in a number of special forces units it is a great pictorial history. Anyone who is a serious collector of SF wings, badges and patches will find this publication an excellent pictorial reference and a must have for their own library."
Neville G. Farley, SAS Association, Queensland Branch.
""Elite is a word I suspect is a word most military units would apply to themselves regarding their professionalism and specialised training. However in the public eye it conjures images of a few very select units who perform very hazardous and secretive tasks.
The books available on New Zealand and Australian military insignia can be counted on both hands so this is a surprising and welcome addition.
Collecting parachute wings and insignia is now a popular hobby and I hope this publication will promote the knowledge of New Zealand and Australian military units to a world-wide audience.
This book is split into two halves with the multitude of Australian units from World War II through the present providing detailed histories of each.
The latter half equally thoroughly covers New Zealand units and ends with a comprehensive bibliography.
Whilst units wearing parachute jump wings are the focus, many other specialist unts are included. Coastwatchers, Long Range Desert Group, Australian Commandos, Fiji Commandos, Z Special Unit, Parachute Riggers, New Zealand Special Air Service, and Royal Australian Navy Clearance Divers.
The colour plates of the insignia are clearly the stars of the book and surprisingly it has "full size" colour illustrations - over 700 wings and insignia.
I commend the authors for their hard work in assembling the insignia and histories and perseverence in following through to such a quality publication. Highly recommended."
- Malcolm Thomas
".... the book makes a worthwhile contribution to the history of ANZAC airborne and special forces. is also an important reference publication that should find its place in defence force and public libraries, and ex-service organisations and historical societies." - Australian War Memorial magazine
"The first thing to say about this A4 size book is 'buy it'. This is a superb work of reference and is wonderfully illustrated with 804 illustrations of the subject matter - all bar a few in colour. All types of insignia are illustrated: sports, unit, rescue services, parachute teams, etc. Truly a treasure trove for the collector.
The book is in two parts, the first detailing Australian insignia and the second, insignia from New Zealand. Each part has an introduction giving a brief, but informative, history of the countries' specia forces. and each item of insignia has brief details.... Of particular interest to true collectors will be the items marked 'collector's market copy' or similar. As well as the more serious badges there are many with some entertainment value. Examples are 'The Third Herd' of 3 Sqn and 'Swanbourne Chicken Stranglers' is a rugby player's patch. Of course the obvious one is there, 'Who Cares Who Wins', a sports patch from New Zealand."
- Crown Imperial magazine (UK)
"A rare joy to read. More so if you are a highly specialized badge collector. As one who owns about six badges and who is far from an expert this is a mine of information to the novice. Encouraging is a better description of the book. There is everything in it that has ever been worn by past and modern Anzac SAS units. This means a beginner knows what to look for, but not always where. In the area of SAS badge collecting one is tempted to say this is the definitive work, but now that this has been published someone will find an obscure example that has been hidden away for years. Perhaps that is the business of books such as the Anzac Elite, to stimulate, encourage and inform. Comprehensive, accurate, and definitive, what else could a collector hope for in a title such as this?"
-Editor, New Zealand Military Historic Society Journal
Review in The Formation Sign (UK) -
Review in Collector magazine (Australia) -
The authors, both with military backgrounds, have provided collectors with an invaluable reference tool that provides both an identification guide and a history of the units involved. The array of cloth patches and badges illustrated is stunning indeed, and this book has guaranteed itself a place on the shelves of collectors, museum curators and militeria traders.
The timespan covered is from 1939 to the present, this was sufficient to generate a bewildering array of badges and patches of the 1st Australian Parachute Bn, Z and M Special Units, RAEME Rangers, the NZ LRDG, the SAS (of both countries) the RAN Clearance Divers etc, etc.
Besides the picture gallery, identification guide and unit histories, there is also a very useful glossary of abbreviations and terminology. Very highly recommended.