The collection is housed in a purpose built space above the Doddington Farm Wagon Collection.
Most of the collection is of British Army officers’ ceremonial uniforms dated from 1881, the year of the Childers Reforms, to 1945, the end of the Second World War. There is a small but good component of Navy and RAF uniforms and some court and civil ceremonial outfits. Most of the uniforms are from Savile Row or best Edinburgh tailors. About half the uniforms are named and in many cases the name, rank and regiment can be cross referenced with the Army List and in turn with interesting personal history.
The collector, Meng Chi Tsen, was Chinese by birth. His father, a poet, essayist and Kuomintang politician, was assassinated in 1939 by the secret service. Ten years later, his mother took her three sons to Paris. Meng Chi attended boarding school in England. In 1953, the pageantry and ceremonial uniforms of the Coronation procession so impressed him that later in life he became a dedicated collector and expert in the field of British militaria.
His collection was initially in Boston, Massachusetts, where he was a university professor. Upon retirement he moved to a large farmhouse in New Hampshire where his collection filled many of the rooms. Meng Chi died in September 2019. His wish for his collection was that it should stay together and return to England. It is now on long term loan to Doddington Hall and is now open to the public by appointment.