Description: 58th/32nd Battalion (Melbourne Rifles) – Brass Hat Badge

Maker’s Name: Stokes

Condition: Very Good

Comments: 58th/32nd Battalion (Melbourne Rifles) – Brass Hat Badge. Complete with two lugs. Now a scarce and highly collectible hat badge.

A third CMF Infantry Battalion was raised in the Melbourne area in 1948, being based predominantly in the Western and North-Western suburbs. Initially encompassing Footscray, and known as The West Melbourne Regiment, then sometime later as The Melbourne Rifles the battalion eventually expanded to be 58th Battalion, The City of Essendon Regiment.

The battalion established its Headquarters at Pascoe Vale Road Moonee Ponds and had companies at Footscray and Brunswick. It gained many new members through National Service, but lost many when the scheme ceased. This battalion was also absorbed into 1 RVR, when the pentropic organisation was adopted in 1960. Unlike the 5th and the 6th battalions the 58th Battalion has not since reappeared in the Australian Army’s Order of Battle, yet strong links are still maintained by the 58th/32nd Battalion Association. The current Moonee Ponds Depot is still the location for their annual ANZAC day service. The 58th Battalion Colours were laid up on the 10 May 1970 located at the Essendon Town Hall. The 32nd Battalion Colours were laid up in August, 1970, and are at St John’s Anglican Church in Footscray.