The Mark I helmet also known as the “brodie”, was named after it’s inventor John Leopold Brodie. Patented in 1915, by summer of 1916 over a million helmets were issued to British and Commonwealth troops. Replacing wool and cloth hats, the Mark I protected the wearer from the constant bombardment of shell fragments and shrapnel.
Constructed of non-magnetic meganese and a steel rim, this second pattern Mk. I retains most of the exterior finish. Inside, the cloth pad has worn out exposing the “doughnut” and the liner securing straps have given out. Despite this, the liner itself remains in very good condition retaining the oilcloth, netting, and under padding. The rim is stamped “FS 1624” a mid to late war manufacture by T.Firth & Sons Ltd of Sheffield.
Hand painted in a distinct red, an oval form can be found on the front facing portion of the helmet representative of the Australian 3rd Division 10th Brigade Headquarters and Trench Mortars (link below under Additional Information tab). Additionally, there appears to be another emblem below but cannot be identified with certainty.