War Office: Home Guard records, Second World War

Details of WO 409
Reference:WO 409
Title: War Office: Home Guard records, Second World War
Description:

These records are the service records of individuals serving in the Home Guard in the Second World War. The records are the Form of Enrolment - Army Form W3066 - and contain personal information and other service information such as length of service in the Home Guard and discharge details for each individual.

This is a digital-only accession.

Records in this series are available to search and download.

Date: 1940-1945
Arrangement:

Home Guard battalions were formed on an area basis, normally covering towns or districts. The records have been described at the level of each individual.

The records have been organised on the basis of 82 county or sub-county areas. The initial accession however only includes the records of County Durham which have been chosen as a pilot ahead of the complete digital accession. The County Durham collection is approximately 81,000 records, the total size of the Home Guard collection is approximately 4.6 million records.

Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record
Language: English
Creator: War Office, 1857-1964
Physical description: 81100 electronic document(s)
Access conditions: Open unless otherwise stated
Immediate source of acquisition: in 2012 Ministry of Defence
Accruals: Series is accruing.
Administrative / biographical background:

In May 1940 the government called for volunteers for a new force whose purpose would be to ensure that any German 'invasion would be repelled doubly sure' Anthony Eden 14 May 1940. The force was originally called the Local Defence Volunteers but his was changed in 1940 by Winston Churchill to the Home Guard. The Home Guard existed throughout the war until December 1944 when it was stood down.

The Home Guard consisted of men who were either in reserved occupations or were too young or too old to serve in the normal armed forces.

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