Posts Tagged ‘Home Guard’

Home Guard in 1941

January 4, 2015

In World War II our local Home Guard were able to make use of the Old House as their HQ, We have a number of photos, all carrying the Burgess Brothers, photographer mark, which show members of the Home Guard outside the Old House. This one we have not shown before on the museum blog.

Market Lavington Home Guard in 1941

Market Lavington Home Guard in 1941

We have sixteen men here and the good news is that we have most of the names. Let’s start with the nine men who are standing (from left to right):

F Perry, not known, A Davis, D Perry, L Plank, C Saxton, not known, L Burgess, W Pike. And the seated front row is:

Not known, B Cooper, H Lovejoy, Captain Kimber, W Titt, J Lovejoy, B Gibbs

We are sure there are people out there who can tell us more about these men, willing to defend their homeland in what we now affectionately call Dad’s Army.

Do get in touch if you can tell us anything about any of these chaps.



The Home Guard

March 31, 2014

Since the TV programme of the name, the 2nd World War home guard often gets called ‘Dad’s Army’. That was not without some reason, for many of the members of our last line of defence were veterans from World War One.

This picture of the Market Lavington platoon was taken outside the Vicarage which is now the nursing home.


Market Lavington Home Guard outside the Vicarage in 1941

We can see this was a Burgess Brothers photo and it dates from 1941. Sadly, this photo is not well captioned so it is over to you folks to help us out. There are a couple of enlarged sections below.




Second World War Home Guard

March 7, 2013
Xharlie Spreadbury and Sid Mullings on the platform of Lavington Station during World War II

Charlie Spreadbury and Sid Mullings on the platform of Lavington Station during World War II

Here we see two fine soldiers, doing their duty for King and Country. The two men are Charlie Spreadbury on the left and Sid Mullings on the right. They are standing on the down platform of Lavington Station.

We know nothing about Mr Spreadbury, except that he was the company cook.

Sid Mullings, we know rather more about. He was born in about 1899, the son of William and Amelia. William was a basket maker, a trade which Sid followed him into. He was to be the last of a long line of Mullings family members to work in basket making.

In 1911 Sid lived with his parents and brother on The Clays, Market Lavington. Sid served in World War I. Indeed, he is wearing medals awarded to him for service in that conflict in the photo. We believe he served in the Machine Gun Corps.

Sid married Emily Perrett in 1924. In 1926 the couple lived on The Clay, possibly with Sid’s parents. Daughter, Margery was born that year.

In 1939 Sid and Emily are listed on the electoral roll on The Clays. Sid’s mother, Amelia was with them.

Sid died in 1973.

Home Guard Thanks.

January 11, 2013

The Home Guard, up and down the country, were ready to do their best to repel any invasion which might have taken place. They were alert for any possible problems that might drop in from above, even in a place like Market Lavington which is well away from the coast.

Many men in the Home Guard were former regular soldiers. Some were men in reserved occupations who may have wished to be in the regular forces but were not allowed. Others might have had some slight medical defect which caused them to be deemed unsuitable for the tough life of a soldier at the front. All were willing to serve and willing to pay with their life if it came to it.

And all received a certificate of thanks at the end of hostilities. We have one such item at Market Lavington Museum.

Certificate awarded to William Ivor Maslen of Market Lavington for service in the Home Guard

Certificate awarded to William Ivor Maslen of Market Lavington for service in the Home Guard

This one, we can see, was issued to William Ivor Maslen. We believe he was born in 1913. William married Market Lavington born Marjorie Oram in 1936. The 1954 directory lists the head of house of a Northbrook home as being William Maslen. Certainly by 1964, the couple were living in Marjorie’s childhood home of Jubilee Cottage on Northbrook.

William died in 1983. Marjorie joined him in Market Lavington churchyard a year later.

From The Volunteer Arms

January 8, 2013

Today’s photo is a little bit careworn. It depicts the Market Lavington Home Guard from the Second World War outside The Old House in the village.

Picture of the Market Lavington Home Guard (1939-45) which was once on display at The Volunteer Arms

Picture of the Market Lavington Home Guard (1939-45) which was once on display at The Volunteer Arms

Several such photos were taken but this one depicts a much larger group of men than others we have at the museum. It was taken by Burgess Brothers of Market Lavington. We can zoom in on the men to make them more visible.

Home Guard men

Home Guard men

close up on some men

Close up on some men

But the origins of this image are only a part of its history. For many years this picture was part of the décor of The Volunteer Arms. It was given to museum founder, Peggy Gye by Mr and Mrs Withers when they left the pub.

No doubt some of the staining happened at the bar. One can imagine the chaps poring over the picture whilst inadvertently pouring drops of ale onto it. And the poor image would have suffered from nicotine staining from that time when people were allowed to smoke in pubs.

Now the picture has a good fighting chance for lasting for others to enjoy, in the museum.

Home Guard at The Old House

November 19, 2012

We have published a photo of The Home Guard outside The Old House in Market Lavington before (click here). This is a totally different picture – but it is at the same location.

Ann Pleydell Bouverie had lived at The Old House but she died on 12th March 1940, leaving quite a substantial estate according to the record of probate.

Probate granted on the estate of Ann Pleydell Bouverie of The Old House, Market Lavington

The Old House was empty. The military authorities took it over and in part it was used by the local Home Guard. This is the group of men, now thought of as ‘Dad’s Army’. So here we have a 1941 group.

Mounted photo of the Home Guard by Burgess Brothers of Market Lavington

The picture is mounted and carries the Burgess Brothers mark so it is a Market Lavington photo in all respects. If we concentrate on the people they’ll look just that bit bigger.

Market Lavington Home Guard outside The Old House in 1941

And now the names. Standing, left to right:

Unknown, H Edwards, C Burnett, Maynard, C Sargent, B Gale, Unknown, S Ingram, N Andrews.

And seated, from left to right:

Unknown, R Chapman, Thompson, J Horner, L Butler, J George, Unknown.

We would, of course, love to know who the unknown people are. If you can help, please get in touch.

Harry Edwards, Shepherds and the Cubs

September 29, 2010

It was great to welcome a party of cubs to the museum on Monday evening. The enthusiasm of the lads (and one lass), their leaders and the mums who turned up was fantastic.

One lad was very keen to donate a piece of iron pyrites he had found. It occurs as nodules in chalk areas and many people call it a meteorite. The interest the lad had was fantastic.

Now to Shepherds. The piece with a shepherd’s crook the other day brought this response from John. John and his wife Pat, Left Market Lavington for Australia in 1976. John has a fantastic memory and often sends us snippets of information.

I’ve been reading the Blog on the shepherd’s crook and the piece about Harry Edwards.

Well another Shepherd in Lavington was William Perry (always known as Shep Perry). I can remember clearly an old caravan like a gypsy shape being on Lavington Hill where the shepherds used to sit or stay when tending their sheep. I remember it being along the ridge road towards Easterton and about 300 metres in.

William Perry Senior and young William (known as Bill), his brother Fred and Terry Sainsbury used to rabbit on the plain. Each day they took their old Dodge truck up to the plain and collect the rabbits they had snared that night. William Senior had the job of preparing the rabbits for sale. He had a wonderful way of cutting and gutting them in one easy move. The rabbits all had their back legs tucked through and placed on poles across two wood horses.

I used to spend a lot of time at Perry’s engineering shop in the woods behind their house and I remember having tooth ache one day and old William Perry tied a piece of string to my tooth and the other end to the house gate and then said stand still and slammed the gate (no more pain and no more tooth).

Thanks John

And so to Harry Edwards.

The Home Guard at The Old House in 1940 - a photo at Market Lavington Museum

Caption giving names of many in the Home Guard photograph

This picture of the Home Guard dates from 1940 and the caption tells us that H Edwards is second from left in the back row. This photo, by Burgess Brothers of Market Lavington was taken at The Old House on Parsonage Lane.