An army of civil services stood tall in the face of Nazi bombing, but their story has in the main been restricted to a small number of collectable histories

At the end of World War Two, many military units published regimental and campaign histories revealing their worthy deeds, but you do not have to travel to far-flung places to find examples of bravery in the face of the enemy – indeed, much of it was right on our doorstep.

Its participants were not fighting soldiers nor famous airmen, but everyday folk whose names have since been forgotten – if they were ever widely known. Their battle, so epitomised by Churchill’s ‘War of the Unknown Warriors’ speech, was captured for posterity in small-scale Civil Defence (CD) published histories, which now prove fascinating and useful for local historians and researchers.

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