The Home Guard at Long Marston

During the war the older lads of the village were used as runners - taking messages between Puttenham church tower, where there was a lookout point, and the Queen’s Head which, so my husband told me, was the command post.

The lads were too young for the services at that time although they were about 16 or 17. I’m not sure how many there were. They were also sent to keep a lookout towards Wingrave for anybody approaching suspiciously, etc.

On one particular night one of the lads, a farmer’s son, took his Dad’s shotgun with him and the lads hid somewhere along Wingrave Road. Suddenly they heard a squeaking sound and saw a small glow slowly coming from Wingrave along the road. They stood in the road – shotgun at the ready – to face the enemy. Who should it be but a local chap cycling home from visiting his girlfriend in Wingrave – of course no lights on his bike on a dark night, and smoking a cigarette. Luckily for him (I don’t know if the shotgun was loaded) no harm was done and they had a good laugh about it. However I think they got a good telling off, especially about taking the shotgun. All the lads eventually served in the forces – my husband joined the Royal Navy.

Photo Credit

Not the Long Marston platoon, but this picture of local Home Guard officers and NCOs is from the same period. Most of those present are wearing medal ribbons from the First World War. Was it taken outside Halton House, or perhaps Tring Mansion? (Photo kindly loaned by Ian Rance.)

P M Proctor (Mrs Stan Proctor). More Home Guard recollections are welcome. Ed.

This article is an extract from previous issue of the Village News. Any mention to events in the article have probably long since passed and are for information only.

Village News April 2010

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