by: Ian Sadler [ ]
The book under review is Through the lens Vehicles of the Home Guard by Martin F Mace published by Historic Military Press, Green Arbor, Rectory Road, Storrington, West Sussex, RH 20 4EF UK (www.historicmilitarypress.com). Price in the UK is £3-00 but for overseas check for any differences at your local book dealer.
Printed in a small booklet form 210mm by 145mm and on good quality paper it has in its 32 pages. A very good history of the types and styles of vehicles used in the setting up of the Home Guard. Some are very peculiar to a single unit and others were standardised and built in vast numbers. The 54 black and white photographs are very well selected and add greatly to this untold story.
It will help researchers and historians to clarify some miss understandings about the vehicles used and the types. Most certainly it will help to identify those mysterious vehicles, which seem to be in the lurking in the background and have never been clearly identified before. Everything from the humble family saloon to 4.5 ton lorries were used and even in one case a tractor, with a rotating turret was built.
The section on the construction of the Bison and the types of original chassis they were fitted to, not only surprised me but has helped all ready for future models, using the Gaz AA chassis as a parent for a Ford AA 1932 model. By altering the steering over and using the photographs as a guide you can make a new rear Bison body to fit the cargo area. A very original model can be made. In all I have counted 8 different lorry manufacturers and cab styles. And that was only during this brief review period, what I am going to identify when I sit down and fully evaluate it; only time will tell.
If you want to know were the Israeli's obtained their ideas for the Sandwich lorries in 1947 you need look no further than this book on page 28 in all its glory. Even figure model painters can find details in the photographs for the correct uniforms of the Home Guard for the period. The author is to be congratulated for this book on a very much-neglected area; of a typical British way of solving a serious problem in an amateurish way.
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If you have seen the "Jones the Butchers lorry" in Dad's Army series on TV, and your interest are in the odd ball style of vehicles, then this is a "Must have book". Very Highly recommended and look for several new models on display at this years IPMS UK Nationals by me.
Copyright ©2020 text by Ian Sadler [ ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of Model Shipwrights. All rights reserved.
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