Book Review
Warpaint Vol 3
Colours and Markings of British Army Vehicles 1903 - 2003
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by: Alan McNeilly [ ALANL ]


Recently released by Mushroom Model Publications is the 3rd Volume in Dick Taylor’s Warpaint series of reference books, covering the Colours and Marking of British Army Vehicles from 1903 to 2003.

The first two Volumes were reviewed here on site and the links to those reviews are below:

Volume 1

Volume 2

This is the third of what will be four volumes covering the interesting, but complex, subject of vehicle paint and marking for the British Army.

In this volume the focus shifts from vehicle marking in the 1st and 2nd World War to the early post war period of the 1950s plus.

This is a text light volume, with the main focus on the pictorial markings.


The book consists of 168 pages in A4 soft back format. The quality of the printing and photographs used with the book are excellent. There are extensive colour references both for the paint schemes, AOS and Formation markings.

Chapter 1 - Post War Years:
Chapter 1 covers developments in the post war years and the return to Deep Bronze Green as a standard paint scheme for military vehicles across many theatres of operation and moves logically on to developments in the 1970s when 2 tone schemes started to make a re-appearance.

It looks at trials and specific developments related to specific urban areas, for example the Berlin Brigade scheme in 1982, and covers the type of paint schemes used across a wide variety of locations and time periods where the British Army has been deployed for example:

• Turkey 1982
• Northern Ireland 1969 - 2003
• Cyprus 1945 - 2003
• The Middle East - 1945 - 1989
• The Far East 1945 - 2003The Balkans 1992 - 2003
• United Nations Duties 1964 - 2003
• The Liberation of Kuwait 1990 -1991
• The Iraq War 2003
• Miscellaneous Paint Schemes 1945 - 2003

Running from page 5 to 60, Chapter 1 is structured with brief text outlining any important issues for that period but primarily the focus is on both colour and black and white examples of the various paint schemes. Each photograph having its own footnote.

Chapter 2 - Arm of Service Markings:
Chapter 2 provides an in-depth look at the development and use of Arm of Service markings from 1915 to 2003. Running from page 51 to 104 there is a wealth of information for the modeller, and starting on page 69 are a detailed series of tables showing AOS marking from 1940 through to 1945.

Page 90 leads onto Post War AOS Marking and again is supported by good quality photographs and detailed tables of information.

Chapter 3 - Formation Signs:
Chapter three covers in detail the origin of Formations signs form Word War One to the modern day. It has a wealth of information with a coloured graphical representation of each sign and a descriptive text associated to its origins (where known) and use. This is invaluable information for the modeller and a highly interesting chapter.

Finally Pages 163 to 167 lists References and Bibliography details of the sources used in the writing of the publication whilst page 168 lists magazines, periodicals and internet resources used for the research of the book.


This is another excellent volume from Dick. There have been a number of small errors identified within the volume, but given the scope and range of the subject area covered plus the lack of supporting documentation in many cases this is to be expected. That said, this doesn’t in any way lessen the importance of this volume as its very publication will bring new information to light

The quality of the printing, photographs and plates are excellent. The data on the development and use of Formation Signs is highly informative and the tables for the AOS markings is a valuable one stop resource in itself.

Both modellers and AM producers should find this volume a valuable publication as no doubt will any that are interested in military history.

Dick has a post running on Missing Link noting any errors or new information that have come up since publication:
Vol 3 errata
Highs: Excellent quality with informative information.
Lows: None not already mentioned.
Verdict: Highly Recommended.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:1
  Mfg. ID: ISBN 978-83-61421-23-8
  PUBLISHED: Sep 11, 2011
  NATIONALITY: United Kingdom

About Alan McNeilly (AlanL)

Greying slightly, but young at heart. I've been teaching adults off and on for most of my life. Left the services in 85 and first started modelling in about 87 for a few years. Then I had a long spell when I didn't build anything (too busy) and really just got started again during the summer of ...

Copyright ©2021 text by Alan McNeilly [ ALANL ]. All rights reserved.


This is pretty much a niche subject and it is for that reason I thank you Alan.
SEP 10, 2011 - 11:33 PM
Hi Darren, Dick's produced a cracking set of references. I understand Vol 4 will round up all the odds and sods. Decal Manufactuers should have this on their shelves! Cheers Al
SEP 11, 2011 - 03:24 AM

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