Rare No.5 Mk1, Type II bayonet for the No.5 Mk 1 Lee Enfield. Mk1, Type I bayonets had only a single screw through the grip scales and are incredibly rare.
The No.5 rifle had a shorter barrel and was lighter in weight, purposely made for airborne troops in the European theatre of World War II. Despite its initial purpose, the No.5 carbine saw most of its service in post war colonial conflicts such as the Malayan Emergency, earning it the nickname “Jungle Carbine.”
Production of the No.5 bayonet began in March 1944, and finished in December 1947. Four companies were initially contracted to produce the No.5 bayonet.
Wilkinson Sword Company, London made 188,354; Viners Ltd., Sheffield produced 42,000; Radcliffe made 75,000 and Elkington & Co. Ltd., Birmingham produced 10,768. An unknown, but small number were produced post WWII by the Royal Ordnance Factory in Poole, Dorset.
This bayonet is one of the rarer Poole made No.5’s, made in 1946.
The 203mm clip-point Bowie blade has a single edge and long single fuller below the rounded spine. The blade is in good condition and has been service sharpened. The blade has an area of cleaned and stabilised corrosion/delamination and minor scratches consistent with use. The ricasso retains most of its original blueing and is stamped with the Poole factory mark, a P within a circle and the date 1946. The crosspiece bears a partially struck numeral stamp that looks like the number 67 beside a Broad Arrow, possibly indicating that the bayonet was re-issued in 1967.
The wrap around wooden grips are in excellent condition and are held tightly in place by two screws, one of which bears a tiny, faint Broad Arrow stamp. The steel bears a Broad Arrow stamp over F5 and the numeral 2 at the front of the mortice slot. The side of the mortice is also stamped with a 2. The beaked pommel bears a Broad Arrow beside F3 and the letter B and the press stud is stamped with a tiny Broad Arrow.
The bayonet is complete with its original, early issue scabbard. Later scabbards had brass throats. The scabbard retains its original black finish.
This is a clean and honest example of a rare British bayonet.