Casoar Cap presented to Bewdley

Contributed by Bewdley Museum

Casoar Cap from the Special Military School of St Cyr, France © Bewdley Museum

In 1940 after the armistice of France with Germany, Frenchmen escaped from their occupied homeland to prepare to fight for the Freedom of France. General de Gaulle created a military training academy, which was housed at Ribbesford House, just a mile from Bewdley in Worcestershire.

Bewdley residents came to know the Officer Cadets well due to their frequent visits to the town. Local people pulled together to make their French visitors feel welcome. This enthusiasm and friendliness led to a lasting bond between the Free French and the people of Bewdley which remains to this day.

The Casoar cap is a ceremonial headdress, which would have been worn by the Free French Officer Cadets. This cap was presented to Bewdley Museum by L'Amicale des Cadets de la France Libre in 1999 in a ceremony recognising the role that Bewdley played in assisting the French resistance.

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