With the threat of a European war growing in the late 1930s, the government created a recruitment campaign for the various ARP services including the Women's Voluntary Service. One of these posters, of which some 50,000 were printed, featured Barbara Kershaw. Originally from Brighouse, she was working as a model in London, aged 25.
I came across a source that says she replaced the original model chosen as that person was of German extraction…
A WW2 British Ministry of Home Security Instructional Diagram Number 3 of the German 1KG incendiary bomb with explosive nose (IBEN).
Here's an interesting item sent in via the website (thank you Wayne). This looks to be a homemade instructional poster about the dangers of incendiary bombs - especially the ones containing additional explosive material. Two IBs have been made from wood to show scale no doubt. Possibly someone that had attended an instructors' course returned to his area and made this to show his fellow wardens. A rare survivor.
I'm indebted to Austin Ruddy via a FB forum for the information needed to spot a reproduction vs. the real wartime example of the iconic "Britain Shall Not Burn" poster. A number of sellers on eBay believe they have the genuine poster when in fact they have (often framed) versions of a facsimile produced by Marshall Cavendish. Between 1976 and 1978 "The War Papers" was published in 90 weekly parts and included reprints of 155 wartime newspapers plus 36 posters and two publisher's supplements.
To spot the Marshall Cavendish poster look for the poster to be printed on light newspaper stock, have a very wide border all around and have washed out colours, especially on the blues. Another key giveaway is size; originals were 20" by 30" and the reproductions are much, much smaller. The reproductions will also have a crease one running horizontal mid-centre as the poster was folded in the newspaper it came with.
Original posters were litho printed which creates a solid colour on the finished poster. Under magnification the reproductions will show the small dots of colour used in their printing. Some of the reproductions have been pasted to board, aged in some way (edges creased/missing, marks to poster) and framed to try and add a touch of authenticity. Originals go for over £500.
The large areas of London that had been bombed led to a call for more men to assist in its clearance. I initially thought that this may be a post-war poster but a reference in a book appears to date it to the war years.
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