Film ID: YFA 548 Video of YFA_548 Homeguard 2 HOMEGUARD 2 1942 Visitor TabsDescription Part two of a training film made by the army in Yorkshire that shows the best methods of camouflage and fieldcraft for the Home Guard. Using short clips of film footage and intertitles the film explains the right and wrong way to carry out their duties. The film opens with a soldier moving low across the grass. Title - The correct way - keeping the body well down. The soldier then crawls with his stomach flat on the ground, before throwing a grenade out of shot. Title - Be careful not to get on the skyline. To do so makes you a good target. A group of soldiers walk across a field silhouetted against the horizon. Title - How to cut wire - Notice that the second man holds the wire to prevent it springing and making noise. Two soldiers slide themselves beneath a barbed wire fence. One man lifts the wire while the other soldier snips it with pliers. Title - The use of wire netting screens. A soldier works bits of grass onto a wire mesh. The soldiers are then shown in fairly long grass with the screens attached to their helmets. Title - Even at a distance of 2 yards the screen is very effective. A shot shows a soldier camouflaged by a mesh at close range. Title - The wrong way to fire from a window. You offer to big a target. In a second floor window of a damaged building a soldier steps into full view. Title - The correct way. First - the kneeling position. Second - the standing position. A soldier creeps into a burnt out room, hugging the wall tightly as crouches and takes aim out the window. A shot from the exterior of the building shows that the position against the wall gives the enemy less of a target to aim at. The manoeuvre is shown again, this time in a standing position. Inside another building a soldier looks from a window using binoculars. Title - Two methods of attack when the enemy is in a house. The first shot shows soldiers creeping low beside a wall, before entering the building together at speed. The manoeuvre is then repeated, this time one of the soldiers drops a grenade through the window before rushing in after it detonates. Title - Firing into a house from the outside. First - the wrong way. Second - the correct way. A soldier moves to the entrance of a house, firing shots with his rifle sticking right through the window. The exercise is repeated and this time the soldier stands back and takes shots from slightly further back. Title - Use of a screen across a road covered by a gun position to bluff A.F.Vs into stopping. A long canvas sheet - several feet high - is shown spread out across a road. Soldiers are then shown at a machine gun. The next shows the road is now clear, before soldiers rush out and deploy the canvas screen across it. Soldiers, playing attackers, stop their vehicle just before the screen and two officers hop out. A defending soldier creeps up from the foliage and throws a grenade at them. The grenade lands by the soldiers, who fall down pretending to be dead. The soldiers then take the opposing soldiers vehicle and drive it behind the screen. Title - Silhouetted against the sky is the wrong way to use loopholes. Sand bag defences are seen on top of a building and a soldier aims his rifle through a firing gap in the wall, but is clearly visible due to the light background. Title - The correct way - with no light. The same shot is shown; however, the firing gap is far less visible. Now on the roof, the filmmaker captures the soldier walking up to the gap which is now covered by a black sheet. Title - A sandbagged position badly sited. On the side of a hill a soldier can be seen standing watch behind a wall of sandbags. Title - Men apparently off the skyline but notice the position when seen from lower angle. From an elevated position, a view shows soldiers walking along a field, and at this angle they appear below skyline, and therefore less visible. The next shot shows the soldiers walking across the same path; however, this time the shot is taken from a lower angle, which now illuminates their figures against the skyline. Title - A blacker bombard gun position with concrete base. A soldier walks around a trench that contains a blacker bombard gun. The film closes with a shot of a car approaching what could be a potential road block. Title - End of reel two. Context The Home Guard may have become the butt of good hearted humour, but this training film shows that they were fully rehearsed for any possible invasion. Giving detailed dos and don’ts of combat skills, such as learning how to lay an ambush, this film allows a fascinating behind the scenes glimpse into wartime preparations at home; although inadvertent humour is not absent, as with the failure to cut the barbed wire. This is one of a series of Home Guard training films made somewhere in the East Riding of Yorkshire. Between them they cover a wide range of combat skills designed to deal with an enemy invading force. The Local Defence Volunteers (LDV) was set up in May 1940, with a plan, under General Ironside, for a war of attrition, chiefly in the south of England. Yet after the abandonment of Operation Sealion in September 1940, with the failure to cripple the RAF, there were no German plans to invade Britain. By the beginning of the 1942 Germany was fully committed in North Africa and Russia, and the forces stationed in Northern France were defensive only. The best they could muster were the retaliatory Baedeker raids of April.