1940-41 A.R.P.s what was happening in blackburnFrom: Articles
The 1940’s a time of great change again in the history of the fire service
There will never again be as many people associated with the service, from the newly appointed National fire service and Auxiliary fire services, the fire guard and fire watchers all of who will be covered in this period on the website. Our intention as mentioned before is not anger or insult people but just to reflect what was happening back then . I hope you enjoy these articles , cuttings and photos most of which are drawn from the library microfilm of the northern evening telegraph, these collections will include other parts of Lancashire .
Air Raid Precautions (ARP) was an organisation in the United Kingdom set up in 1937 dedicated to the protection of civilians from the danger of air raids. It included the Raid Wardens’ Service that was to report on bombing incidents. Every local council was responsible for organising ARP wardens, messengers, ambulance drivers, rescue parties and liaison with police and fire brigades.
From 1 September 1939, ARP Wardens enforced the “blackout”. Heavy curtains and shutters were required on all private residences, commercial premises, and factories to prevent light escaping and so making them a possible target for enemy bombers to locate their targets. With increased enemy bombing during the Blitz, the ARP services were central in reporting and dealing with bombing incidents. They managed the air raid sirens and ensured people were directed to shelters.
From 1941 the ARP officially changed its title to Civil Defence Service to reflect the wider range of roles it then encompassed. During the war almost 7,000 Civil Defence workers were killed. In all some 1.4 million men and women served as ARP wardens during World War Two. The Civil Defence Service was stood down after the end of the war in Europe on 2 May 1945.
During the First World War Britain was bombed by Zeppelins and Gotha bombers and it was predicted that large-scale aerial bombing of the civilian population would feature prominently in any future war. In 1924 the Committee of Imperial Defence set up a subcommittee to look at what measure could be taken to protect the civil population from aerial attack. The new committee, known as Air Raid Precautions was headed by the then Lord Privy Seal, Sir John Anderson.
For the next ten years this committee looked into issues of new aerial weapons development and the possible impact on civilians. The use of gas attacks in the First World War played heavy on the decisions and protection via gas masks was a core decision taken by the committee. Every single person would need a gas mask which meant nearly 40 million would be required. Together with ideas around the building of air raid shelters, evacuations of people and blackout requirements these were all termed under ‘passive air defence’.
With the rise of Hitler during the 1930s, a further Home Office committee, the Air Raid Precautions (ARP) Department was created. From 1 April 1935 it was this department that was direct the British response to passive air defence. In April 1937 the Air Raid Wardens’ Service was created which aimed to seek some 800,000 volunteers (some 200,000 people had joined by mid-1938, and following the Munich Crisis of September 1938 another 500,000 has enrolled). On 1 January 1938, the Air Raid Precautions Act came into force. This compelled all local authorities to begin creating their own ARP services.
With the threat of war imminent in 1939, the Home Office issued dozens of leaflets advising people on how to protect themselves from the inevitable air war to follow.
ARP duties wardens, ARP warden ensured the blackout was observed, sounded air raid sirens, safely guided people into public air raid shelters, issued and checked gas masks, evacuated areas around unexploded bombs, rescued people where possible from bomb damaged properties, located temporary accommodation for those who had been ‘bombed out’, and reporting to their Control Centre about incidents, fires, etc. and to call in other services as required.
Report and Control
Central headquarters that received information from wardens and messengers and managed the delivery of the relevant services needed to deal with each incident.
Often Boy Scouts or Boys Brigade members aged between 14 and 18 as messengers or runners would take messages from wardens and carry them to either the sector post or the Control Centre. Bombing would sometimes cut telephone lines and messengers performed an important role is giving the ARP services a fuller picture of events.
First Aid Parties
Trained to give first response first aid to those injured in bombing incidents.
Casualties from bombing were taken to First Aid Posts or hospital by volunteer drivers. There were also stretcher parties that carried the injured to posts.
The rescue services were involved in getting the dead and injured out of bombed premises
Specialists to deal with and clean up incidents involving chemical and gas weapons.
Following the destruction caused by the bombing of the City of London in late December 1940, the Fire Watcher scheme was introduced in January 1941. All buildings in certain areas had to have a 24-hour watch kept. In the event of fire these Fire Watchers could call on the rescue services and ensure they could access the building to deal with incidents.
Creatornorthern evening telegraph
Date of coverage1940-1941
- 1940-41 A.R.P.s what was happening in blackburn
- A.F.S Recruiting Call
- A.F.S Reserved Age Changes
- A.R.P 1940/1941
- A.R.P Fire Watchers 1942
- Appointment of Section Leader 1941
- Blackburn Fire Chief Honoured
- Blackburn Fire Watching
- Blackburn Man In NFS Overseas
- Blackburn Mans’ Distinction
- Blackburns New A.F.S Fire Chief
- Blackpool Firemen And Women Go To London
- Clitheroe A.F.S. Man Killed On Duty
- Clitheroe Fire Chief Retires
- Commandant Head’s Post Change
- Crowds Watch NFS Demonstration
- Darwen Firefighters Blitz Training
- Darwen Fireman Frank Briggs A Naval Hero
- Darwen fireman Identified from old photo
- Darwen Remember Horace Seddon, Both NFS And AFS Fireman
- Drill Blackburn Fire Station Yard 1941
- Fire Brigade Veteran Dead
- Fire HQ Returning To Blackburn
- Fire In Paterson Street Mill
- Fire Service Rising Costs
- Fire Station Magic
- Fire Women’s Vocational Training
- Firefighting In Persia
- Firemen Killed And Wounded In Large City Air Raids
- Firemen Seek Wage Increase With Two Shift System
- Firemen’s Mobile Canteen
- Firemen’s Pay
- Firemen’s Salute Origins
- Firewoman Driver
- Firewomen Needed
- First Annual Report 1940s
- Gareth (Taffy) Davies
- Girls Of The A.F.S
- John Wilkins Honoured
- Lincoln Street Fire Brigade
- Margaret Ormerod Cook At Blackburn
- N.F.S. Officers In Collision
- N.F.S. Tender Enquiry Into Football Jaunt
- N.F.S.Victory Dance 1940’s
- New Chief Fire Officer For Blackburn
- NFS Officer Leaves Blackburn To Return To Home Town
- One Command For Fire Brigades
- Pay Scale 1977
- Presentations To Great Harwood Firemen
- Secret Fire Brigade Transfers
- Sergeant Birtwistle Passes Exam
- The A.F.S Gets A New Canteen And Cook
- The N.F.S And A.F.S 1940/1941
- The N.F.S And A.F.S 1942
- Training Blackburn Fire Station Drill Yard
- Water For Firefighting
- Women Wanted For The Fire Service