Film ID: YFA 549 Video of YFA_549 Homeguard 3 HOMEGUARD 3 1942 Visitor TabsDescription Part three 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. Title - A method of concealment when crossing a gateway using some ground sheets as a mask. A soldier runs past a gate opening carrying a length of rope. He then pulls on the rope creating a canvas cover which allows the rest of his squad to crawl beneath unnoticed. The canvas cover is then pulled away once all soldiers have safely passed. The next scene shows soldiers moving slowly along a row of hedges and stopping just before a gap. The soldiers then prepare the canvas cover, before deploying it and using it as cover as the sprint past. Following this, a soldier crawls low beside a gate with the rest of his squad waiting behind. He then removes a smoke flare from his satchel and lights it. Throwing it by the gate opening, the smoke fills the area, which allows the soldiers to pass by the gate. Title - Light foreground with a dark background. Soldiers walk through a field with half their bodies silhouetted against the shadow of a wooded area, while other soldiers walk completely in the shadow. Title - You must be careful not to cast reflections in water. A shot shows a reflection of soldiers walking past a pool of water. Title - Crawling across a roadway. First - Wrongly under observation from the gate. Second - Correctly below the ridge out of sight of the gate. The first shot shows a soldier crawling across a pathway and into long grass, with a gate clearly in the background. The next shows the same action, but this time the soldier crossed from a raised part of the path, with the ridge blocking the view from the gate. Title - When using a hilltop or rise for observation do not expose yourself needlessly. First - Wrong way. Second - the correct position with body well down. A soldier scans the surrounding area, keeping his head above the grass. The second shot shows the soldier keeping low amongst the grass. Title - make use of natural cover whenever possible. Soldiers crawl through a field using tufts of grass and shrubs for cover. A soldier then finds cover behind a statue of an eagle, and he pretends to fire off several rounds. Title - Firing over rising ground. First - the wrong position. Second - the position with body as low as possible. A soldier lies on the top of a hillside with his head and rifle slightly the raised. The second shot shows him with his rifle flat against the ground and his head much lower. Title - Do not make yourself obvious by moving vegetation etc. To places where none exists - A soldier covered in branches and leaves runs out into a clearing in a field. Context This training film reveals that, rather than being a bumbling ‘Dad’s Army’, the Home Guard were fully prepared in the eventuality of any invading German army. Here, hidden in a wood in the East Riding of Yorkshire in the summer of 1942, members of the Home Guard show their various, somewhat comical, skills in the art of camouflage. This is one of three films showing the full scope of Home Guard training in the East Riding of Yorkshire. The Home Guard – formerly the Local Defence Volunteers (LDV, appropriately nicknamed ‘Look, Duck, and Vanish’) – were formed in mid May 1940, when the government were concerned that citizens were arming themselves. At first there was no training, and it fell to Grimsby born Tom Wintringham to kick-start this in June 1940, applying what he learnt from fighting for the Republic in the Spanish Civil War. There was also an unofficial Women's Home Defence League established illegally by Edith Summerskill MP in 1940, which trained 20,000 women to use arms. At its peak the HG numbered 1,793,000.