2015

Wiltshire Home Guard

Living History Group

2015 EVENTS

22 March: Devizes

11 July: Walton-in-Gordano

4-5 April: Mapledurham

1-2 August: Lacock

25-26 April: Toddington

29-31 August: Cranmore

2 May: Nether Stowey

12-13 September: Blunsdon

9 May: Quedgeley

19-20 September: Bratton at War

23-25 May: Selwood

26-27 September: Bitton

13-14 June: Wraxall

14 November: Blitz Street 1940s Ball

20-21 June: Portland

5-6 December: Bovington

27-28 June: Trowbridge

 

To view the images, click on the first image and scroll through. All images copyright to Wiltshire Home Guard and the photographer.

Bratton at War - Step Back in Time (Operation Omega): 19-20 September

 

A weekend of fine weather for our event this year, which celebrated the 75th anniversary of the formation of the Home Guard (Local Defence Volunteers at formation).

 

In addition to our Blitz Street and associate displays, we had 23 living history exhibitors and vehicles, 3 charities, 11 traders and walking re-enactors. Entertainment included Dickie Lines with his many imitations, dance lessons and Fashion Shows in the marquee. In the arena, we put on several demonstrations of Home Guard activities, held the Service of Remembrance, had a dog display from Cass Security and the main event - the Jump For Heroes team parachuting into the arena followed by a battle to prevent them being captured by the Germans on site.

 

A huge THANK YOU to everyone for supporting this event and for making it bigger and better than last year.

Youtube video from MissMark999: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aOkENp9IWNM

MARCH TO JUNE

Devizes Toy & Train Collectors Fair: 22 March

 

3 members of the group attended this event. Bob was sited outside with the military vehicles while Claire & Naomi had a small homefront display inside the Corn Exchange.

Mapledurham at War: 4-5 April

 

4 miles north west of Reading, Mapledurham House was the setting for The Eagle Has Landed, and our first major event of the year. Bad weather on the Friday damaged our display gazebos so we were left with 10 walking re-enactors over the two day event. Despite the cold, it was an amazing weekend with three great battles each day.

Wiltshire Home Guard Gallery

Event Gallery

1940s Weekend, Toddington: 25-26 April

 

13 members of the Group attended the Wartime event at Toddington, spending most of the weekend travelling back and forth on the trains.

VE Day May Fair, Nether Stowey: 2 May

 

7 members of the Group attended the May Fair to aid with the village's VE Day celebrations. We spent the day walking around the streets, and took part in their parade and the service of remembrance. Although the weather was drizzly, it was a very pleasant day, and we were made very welcome.

Wiltshire Home Guard Gallery

Event Gallery

VE Day Celebrations, Quedgeley: 9 May

 

Our UXB display, sentry box, village defence briefing, pup tent and police home all made an appearance at this event, as did our first showing of the UXB demonstration this year. 7 members of the team were on hand to explain the various items, weapons and methods of defence to visitors, which included Deb Llewellyn, the Mayor of Gloucester.

Wiltshire Home Guard Gallery

Event Gallery

Selwood: 23-25 May

 

6 members of the Wiltshire Home Guard attended this event. Home Front displays consisted of ARP post, Police home and Toy Shop. Elements of the Home Guard display were combined with the Tom und Jerry displays.

Dig for Victory, Wraxall: 13-14 June

 

14 members of the Group attended this regular event at Wraxall setting up two Home Front displays and a Home Guard display. The weather improved throughout the weekend, with a warm sunny day for the Dakota fly past on the Sunday.

Veterans Weekend, Portland: 20-21 June

 

Portland Castle and grounds were taken over by 14 members of the Group. One room was taken up with Lady She's boutique, another with the village defence briefing, and the final room with aspects of the home front including a display of the weekly food ration for one person. The UXB, sentry box, archery, militaria display, police home, 1940s home, WVS collection point and toy store were all displayed outside. Demonstrations and talks were held throughout the weekend, including UXB disposal, drill and capture of a German airman, village defence and fashion of the 1940s.

Veterans Weekend, Trowbridge: 27-28 June

 

This year the 1940s home, toy shop with WVS collection point, memorabilia, Police, sentry box with UXB and village defence set up were on display at Trowbridge. Space restrictions prevented us from doing the usual drill and UXB demonstrations, which was a welcome relief with the extreme heat on Saturday. The blue sky was a beautiful backdrop for the Hurricane flypast. Thankfully Sunday was cooler although it was wet at the start of the day.

Wiltshire Home Guard Gallery

Event Gallery

JULY TO DECEMBER

Village Fete, Walton-in-Gordano: 11 July

 

One of the small village events we are invited to. This year we had two static displays - Militaria and 1940s Police. Derek led the younger attendees in drill throughout the afternoon. Our demonstration included UXB disposal, a comparison of Allied and German weapons and what to do and what not to do if the country is invaded.

Wiltshire Home Guard Gallery

Event Gallery

Lacock at War: 1-2 August

 

Many of the Group attended Lacock at War, one of our regular events. In addition to static displays, we had parades with inspections by our Colonel and Lord Mayor, and undertook several village patrols in search of German airman, often aided by other allied forces.

Wiltshire Home Guard Gallery

Event Gallery

The Way We Were, Cranmore: 29-31 August

 

We put on a few battles along the railway, disposed of a bomb dropped next to the line, and set up a few static displays. Unfortunately the weather deteriorated as the weekend progressed.

Blunsdon at War: 12-13 September

 

At this event, we put up several displays. We spent the two days chatting with visitors to the railway.

1940s Weekend, Bitton Avon Valley Railway: 26-27 September

 

A dry and sunny weekend for Paul to act as bodyguard to Winston Churchill. The group also provided a few static displays (Police Station, W.V.S. Volunteer Centre and a few toys), as well as walking re-enactors.

Blitz Street 1940's Ball: 14 September

 

Our first attempt at a period social. The hall was decked out with flags and bunting. Party-goers were treated to corned beef hash or vegetable charlotte, danced the night away with Dickie Lines, waited with baited breath for their number to be called in the raffle, and competed for the best dressed award (won by Graham and Caroline). A big thank you to Claire, Naomi, PP, Val, Jackie and Gill for organising.

Vintage Christmas Festival, Bovington: 5-6 December

 

A 1940's Christmas was one of several of our static displays around an M3 Sherman tank.

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