Home Guard was initiated in May 1940, initially being known
as the 'Local Defence Volunteers' (LDV) and in true British
humour was quickly dubbed 'Look Duck & Vanish'. The upper
age limit of sixty-five was not strictly observed; the oldest
member of the Home Guard was well into his eighties and had
first seen action in the Egyptian campaign of 1884-85.
With the threat of a German invasion over, the Home Guard was stood down in December
1944. At its height, 1.75 million men, plus women auxilliaries in 1100 battalions
served in the Home Guard throughout the United Kingdom. In recognition of their
service, the Defence Medal was awarded for three years continous service in the
Home Guard and the King's Medal was awarded to members of the Home Guard who
had been discharged through injury from war service.