British watchmaker Elliot Brown has been given the green light from NATO’s procurement organisation for its latest ultra-tough timepiece to be issued to service personnel around the world.
The company says its new Holton Professional is the first watch from a British company in over 10 years to be approved by NATO and given its own NATO stock number that means armed forces can be issued with it as part of their military kit alongside weapons and protective gear.
Other watchmakers, including Elliot Brown and Bremont, make commemorative watches for military units, but this is the first time in over a decade that a watch has been cleared for combat by NATO, according to Ian Elliot, co-founder of Elliot Brown.
The first production run of the black version of the Holton will be delivered for use by “a specialist branch of the British military” on December 10.
They will then be offered to Elliot Brown’s retail partners. Black and green versions are available for pre-order on Elliot Brown’s website today priced at £425 on a webbing strap and £450 on a rubber strap.
Elliot Brown specialises in ultra-rugged watches, and the Holton Professional takes this to a military-ready level with its Swiss Ronda movement protected by a special shock absorption system. The case and crystal glass are triple sealed, and a new deep-inset screw-in crown has been developed for the watch, making it water-resistant to 200m.
They have a bezel that has been designed to be used by somebody wearing gloves, and the Superluminova markers have been developed in conjunction with military experts so that they are legible to the person wearing the watch, but do not produce a flare that can be seen through night vision goggles, which would give away somebody’s location in the dark.
The Holton conforms to most diver’s watch standards, and its name comes from the Royal Navy’s Cordite Factory at Holton Heath in Elliot Brown’s home county of Dorset.
“Our inspiration came from historical dive watches. It had to be original and innovative but have a military bearing that would be relevant and familiar. This watch is typical of our meticulous attention to detail,” says Mr Brown.