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 Post subject: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 10:35 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 30, 2013 23:13 pm
Posts: 57
Hi, I'm trying for an earlyish impression of Home Guard/ Auxiliary, with denim uniform, but was wondering what other equipment a Home Guard might have been issued with by early 41, I have the basic pouches, belt, cross straps, and slip, bayonet and SMLE (Denix at the moment, but I'm looking around for a deac), a mk VII gas mask bag, and military gas mask, but would like to know if I have too much or not enough for a fairly general impression of the time period.


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 11:09 am 
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Joined: Tue Sep 02, 2008 11:18 am
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Location: Kent
Real Name: Andy
Group: Za Oberonyu! 13th GRD and WPFG
Issued: gaiters, boots, fs cap (not sure about regimental badge...not sure when those came along), haversack, 03 pattern water bottle carrier and bottle (possibly not one per man...)

Greatcoat probably not one per man at this time. To start with they shared them, with the guys on patrol being given them and then handing them in when they swapped over guard - along with weapons and ammunition too quite often, unless you were in a hot spot that had a good allowance of rifles and cartridges. At this time the dreaded capes were also around.

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"I saw cities in Europe that were practically untouched by the war, countries that capitulated to the more powerful enemies even before war was declared, but we are not like that. Our grandfathers, our fathers, our older generation, our great leaders, fought here for each building, for each street." - First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on the 70th anniversary of victory at Stalingrad


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 12:26 pm 
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And if you want to go for the weapon the vast majority of the Home Guard used a P17 rather than a SMLE.


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 13:12 pm 
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Weren't the P14 and SMLE still being withdrawn from the Home Guard in 42 ??


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 14:40 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2012 12:24 pm
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Real Name: Owen Thompson
Group: Civil Defenders
... and a helmet. Have a look at what our lot do: https://www.facebook.com/pg/Civil-Defen ... 4058722305


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 15:10 pm 
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Ahhh yes, the helmet. How could I forget that!

With the type of rifle, its a question you can argue about forever. We even used to have a wide array of different ones on display and still you'd get veterans come and tell you that they had something different...

If you can ever find the stand down paperwork for a unit, you will see what they were handing back. I'll try and find you one of those I've got here for Tunbridge Wells - you will be no doubt as amazed as I was to read what they had.... far more, for more types of weapon than "common wisdom" suggests they ever had.

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"I saw cities in Europe that were practically untouched by the war, countries that capitulated to the more powerful enemies even before war was declared, but we are not like that. Our grandfathers, our fathers, our older generation, our great leaders, fought here for each building, for each street." - First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on the 70th anniversary of victory at Stalingrad


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 16:26 pm 
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Joined: Sat Dec 10, 2005 12:19 pm
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Location: Massachusetts, USA
Group: Tay/5 & 1st American Sqdn., Home Guard
I was looking at some stand down parade footage and what I could see were P17s, P14s, SMLEs, and at least one group with No. 4 rifles. Another film, of the stand down of the 35th Civil Service Bn., showed a sprinkling of SMLEs, and a LOT of sten guns, some which were modified Mk Is. There is information suggesting that units armed with P17s, still kept some P14s around for target practice since there was more .303 ammo. available than .30-06. One Bristol unit had half their coys. armed with P14s, the other coys. were armed with P14s, it must of been interesting for the supply blokes.

As to cap badges, they were authorised for wear in August, 1940. I don't know how many Mk VII respirator haversacks were used, most of what i've seen photos of seem to be the Mk VI. Some HGs started to receive BD in late 1940, some units not getting BD till late '41-'42.

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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 16:42 pm 
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Just had a thought .. there is available, I have a copy come to that ... of film of the Thornton HG being formed .. follows them through from LDV and civvies to HG and uniform .. could see if I can get any decent stills from it .. ??

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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 17:10 pm 
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All of the Wiltshire Home Guard and the vast majority of other Counties were equipped with .30 weapons once the supplies came on stream from America. Some .303 rifles were retained to make use of available ammunition and by 1944 some units even received No.4's.

As Andy has commented you can argue about this for ever but unless you have photographic or other records proving use of other weapons in the unit you are portraying, I personally prefer to see the most likely option rather than the cheaper more easily accessible option being used. Pity there are not more .30 Lewis, WW1 BAR and water cooled Browning's available to make impressions look really good


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 18:10 pm 
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Not sure when the film this was taken from was shot, but Thornton HG it seems had their own cameraman who documented their formation and through the war.
This is a still taken from when they were boarding transport to take them to the firing range, not all that clear I know but it may help perhaps to identify the rifles being carried and answer a question with regard to one unit anyway ..??


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War Correspondent
United Press
'The Writing 69th'
8th USAAF
Somewhere in England

... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

... " I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them " ...


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 21:00 pm 
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Location: Massachusetts, USA
Group: Tay/5 & 1st American Sqdn., Home Guard
I think P17s. There is a band of red paint on the rifle held by the foremost man waiting to get on the bus, and the man behind him nearest the camera also has red paint on the rifle,just below his hand.

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"One evening as an LDV, some German soldiers I did see, they ran like hell, but they couldn't catch me..."


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 21:35 pm 
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Im told that in actuality there was no such thing as a 'P17.' There was a P14, at Cal.303, but the Cal.30.06 version was the U.S. Rifle Model M1917. Those were the ones with the red band which indicated Cal.30.06 only and were either Winchester, Remington or ERA manufacture.

Also for an early impression it would probably be the Canadian Ross M10 MkIII at Cal.303 that was issued .. (Canadian mfg. ball - these rifles didn't like British mfg. MkVII .303.ammunition.)

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'The Writing 69th'
8th USAAF
Somewhere in England

... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

... " I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them " ...


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2017 22:38 pm 
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Location: Massachusetts, USA
Group: Tay/5 & 1st American Sqdn., Home Guard
The US version of the P14 is the M1917 Enfield, in 30-06. Some were made by Winchester (as is my P14), others were made by Eddystone (as is my M1917). Just to confuse things even further some folks in the US refer to the M1917 as an Eddystone. Many members of the forum use "P17" which I picked up just for clarity, I believe the official designation was the P300, though I could be wrong. You also see photos of Long Lees being used. Some Ross rifles even went to the Army. Milligan writes about being in an OP after DunKirk, armed with a Ross and five rounds of ammo.

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"One evening as an LDV, some German soldiers I did see, they ran like hell, but they couldn't catch me..."


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2017 7:33 am 
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Real Name: Owen Thompson
Group: Civil Defenders
For the full film of Thornton Home Guard (which is well worth watching) see: http://www.yorkshirefilmarchive.com/fil ... home,guard


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2017 9:18 am 
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Hi obt48, I'd like to come and join you but I'm in Sutton Coldfield (WAR 6). The film looks fantastic, their weaponry was quite extensive, didn't see a Thompson or a Sten though. I'll try contacting the YFA to see about viewing the whole film, I do note that when their first P17/ M1917 rifles arrived they were all kitted out in serge BD, couldn't have been a very early event then.


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 Post subject: Re: Equipment 1941
PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:48 am 
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Weapons were almost certainly prioritised in distribution to the places most likely to receive the initial German assault - South East England and East Anglia. London HAD to be protected and was in a very vulnerable place geographically.

Doesn't surprise me to see any other area not getting large numbers of decent rifles until late 1940 at all.

_________________
"I saw cities in Europe that were practically untouched by the war, countries that capitulated to the more powerful enemies even before war was declared, but we are not like that. Our grandfathers, our fathers, our older generation, our great leaders, fought here for each building, for each street." - First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on the 70th anniversary of victory at Stalingrad


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