Re-enact SA

South Australian Military Reenacment Group

"Impressions" Explained

What is an impression?

An "impression" in re-enacting jargon is the type of soldier the re-enactor is portraying and is usually defined by the country, branch of service, soldier type, and year i.e. "British Army, infantry, Normandy 1944". Re-enact SA bases its events around the main impressions known as primary impressions.

Primary Impressions - Second World War

If you become an active member of RSA, it is expected that you will start to assemble one of our a primary impressions. This allows you to attend the most events, and fit in with our pre-existing units. Depending on the event and time of year, the events will either be based in the Continental, Mediterranean or North African theaters of World War Two i.e. France, Germany, Netherlands, Italy, Crete, North Africa etc.

For this reason, each impression has a winter and summer version and it is recommended to eventually obtain both uniform sets. It is also beneficial to obtain an impression for both Allied and Axis to enable maximum attendance, a chance to experience a variety of equipment/weapons/vehicles/tactics and to balance side numbers where required.

Luckily, there are pools of spare uniforms and equipment which can be loaned to new members so they can attend an event and get a feel of what it's all about.

British Commando

This impression is utilised for the majority of our tactical events set in continental Europe






Commonwealth Infantry

Particularly those representing Great Britain and Canada. These impressions are suitable for the majority of our tactical events set in continental Europe.  


Australian Infantry

This impression is suitable for events based around battles conducted in Crete, Greece and North Africa against German forces. 


Deutches Heer (German Army) Infantry


Deutsches Fallschirmjäger (German Paratrooper)

The German paratrooper was seen as the most daring and innovative tool of war at the time and were studied by all other combative Nations, though it was from the Russians in the late 1930's that German exchange officers observed Russian soldiers sitting along the wings of lumbering bombers and simply sliding off the wings and parachuting to earth that gave rise to the idea of a German paratroop arm.

The paratrooper was instrumental in opening the path for the armies that invaded the low countries of Belgium and Holland by landing atop the Belgium fortress of Eben Emal and the invasion of Norway and the taking and holding bridges for the taking of Rotterdam. Later it was largely due to the Fallschirmjager allowing a costly victory by seizing Crete from a force of 30,000 British and Commonwealth troops.

It wasn't until 1942 that the Fallschirmjäger saw service in Afrika at the final battle of El Alamein.


Primary Impressions - Great War

To support the Great War centenary events, Re-enact SA invested in establishing First World War Australian infantry impressions

Australian Infantry - First Australian Infantry Force (AIF) 



German Imperial Infantry

For the purposes of filming, German impressions (on loan) have also been employed.


Secondary Impressions (WW2)

These impressions are utilised only where the event/scenario requires and not in place of primary impressions. These impressions can be any that are not listed under primary impressions, however they may not be suitable for a large number of our events. They must also comply with our rules regarding "political" impressions. Some examples are shown below:

Deutches Heer Panzertruppen - (German Army Tank Crew)

Members of Re-enact SA portraying a tank crew from the 2nd Panzer Division, Summer 1942 during AusArmourFest 2019. This is the only known example of an original Panzer IV D variant, restored to full running condition and on display at the Australian Armour and Artillery Museum in Cairns.

Deutsches Heer Sanitator (German Army Medic)