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War & Decline

The Home Front

The Fire Guard's Pocket Chart


Leaflet containing information on types of bombs, first aid, equipment and diagrams.


For months after the outbreak of war no enemy bombers appeared over British cities. This strange, edgy period known as the Phoney War lasted well into 1940, but the evacuation of the British army from the Belgium port of Dunkirk and the fall of France prompted real fears of invasion.


In May 1940 a new defence force known as the Local Defence Volunteers or LDV was set up. Recruits were between 17 and 65 years of age and a quarter of a million men joined within a week. The numbers had doubled by July when the force was renamed the Home Guard.


The volunteers were not paid and, in the early days, few were equipped with rifles. There was one gun for ten men on average. The Home Guard’s task was to keep watch on coasts, public buildings, roads and railways for signs of German invaders.

Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
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Dumfries & Galloway Council

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