Published between January 1940 and late 1945, the ARP & AFS Review was a monthly magazine for members of the ARP, Civil Defence, Fire Guard and fire services. The magazine covered various topics; the release of Ministry of Home Security booklets, civil defence discussions in parliament, to issues of the organisation of the civil defence services. The magazine's editor was Peter Hunot, whose archive resides at the Bishopsgate Institute in London
The magazine also incorporated a section called "Wardens News" the "Official Organ of the National Association of Air Raid Wardens". This updated wardens of various civil defence-related bulletins, circulars and booklets that had been issued by the Ministry of Home Security (as well as corrections to those previously published). In April 1941 the magazine added the sub-heading "The Civil Defence Journal" and from November 1941 the title of the magazine became "ARP & NFS Review" following the changes made to the fire services in August of the same year.
The magazine continued to be printed but the size was reduced slightly later in the war due to paper rationing. Though the threat from Luftwaffe bombing raids began to recede in the middle of the war, the magazine covered the introduction and effects of the V-weapons from June 1944.
By the end of hostilities in Europe in May 1945, the magazine was titled "ARP & NFS Review - Industrial and Civic Welfare". The magazine continued into late 1945 and was retitled as "Welfare - The Journal of Industrial and Social Progress" but subscriptions dwindled and the publication ceased printing.
For historians, collectors and those interested in wartime civil defence, the magazines provide a valuable trove of information. The Imperial War Museum in London holds bound copies of every issue.
Curiously, another of the FG badges has recently appeared. This was acquired in the Maidstone area by a collector. Again, these badges are assumed to be for the Fire Guard Organisation and this one has "Maidstone Service" with the additional "SC" letters (which may correspond with either Street Captain or Sector Captain).
I've not previously seen this design of badge before and it would be interesting to know if others have previously come across examples. They do appear to be quite roughly made and the rear does have an odd fixing for the time period.
If you have any thoughts please leave a comment or fire off an email.
A curious-looking badge appeared on eBay that had "FG" letters plus "Party Leader" written on it. It's assumed that the badge is related to the Fire Guard Organisation. A Party Leader was in charge of roughly 150 yards of street or 30 houses and between 10 and 30 individual Fire Guards (organised into Stirrup Pump Teams of three people). The Party Leader was not a member of any team.
A peculiar fixing to the rear; it was suggested online that perhaps this could be slipped onto the lace of a Zuckerman helmet liner (the lacing passes through the helmet via holes), but it is rather small. Alternatively, it could pass through the buttonhole on the lapel of a suit jacket.
Most large firms were required to build air raid shelters for their workforce. In the event of a raid, it would be important that each person knew exactly where to go. If several shelters were built it would be necessary to allocate people to each and in these cases shelter cards, like the one shown below, would be issued.
An interesting green enamel lapel badge for the Clay Cross Company based near Chesterfield. The business was founded by railway pioneer George Stephenson in 1837 and ran coal mines, ironworks, brickworks and pipe factories at Clay Cross, Derbyshire. Further details of the firm can be found on Wikipedia.
The badge is made by the Birmingham Medal Company and the meaning of the additional letter 'J' is not currently known (at the time of writing no other badges with any other letters are known to exist). If you know more about the use of that letter, drop me a line.
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