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15 October 2014
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Oh ! What A Lovely War For The Look - Duck - Vanish Brigade

by Barry Ainsworth

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Archive List > Home Guard

Contributed by 
Barry Ainsworth
People in story: 
An Ex L.D.V. Member
Location of story: 
Background to story: 
Civilian Force
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
19 January 2006

How many older readers remember a civilian front line of defence, during the last war?
I refer to the Local Defence Volunteers, LDV. for short.

Just after the outbreak of hostilities in 1939, I joined the illustrious brigade and become a member of 'G' company, 5th Battalion Loyal North Lancs.
Being on Daubhill, our company headquarters where at Haynes Street Mission, off St Helens Road.
The officer and NCO's in charge were all who had served in the First World War.

Drill night was once a week and sometimes on Sunday Morning.

As we had no weapons at first, drilling was done with pieces of wood representing rifles.
One night a week was taken up by patrol duty, which lasted from 7pm until 6am in the morning.

Now the best part of it is that we didn't have a uniform, only an armband with the letters LDV., and when we went out on patrol, a pocket full of stones, a catapult and a long stick. If a parachutist had landed we would have probably have stuck to our nickname the Look, Duck and Vanish Brigade (LDV.)

Eventually we did get uniforms and arms, 1914-18 American 300 rifles, etc, and the Home Guard, as it was then called, became a home fighting force.

I kept with them till joining the RAFVR. in 1941.

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