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This transcript relates to the Almouth area and is, unfortunatel, undated. As it comes in sequence from the bundle I would assume that it was written around January 1915 :-

LOCAL DEFENCE EMERGENCY COMMITTEE.

PARISH OF ALNMOUTH.

I. INVASION DIRECTIONS to POPULATION in AREA.

I have caused to be distributed to every householder in the Area the following directions as under :-

1. On word being sent that the invasion is imminent any people desiring to leave the area are to go forthwith to the District Hedgeley North Whittingham South and by the following route - via Bilton to Shilbottle whence they will be directed by the Special Constable or the Vicar there. Failing such directions to proceed West by by-road via Deca Moor proceed South about 200 yards on main Highway thence by byway on reighthand side to Alnwick Moor thence by byway over back of Lemmington Bank and thence via Glanton.

2. Before leaving to run to waste all oil supplies and on leaving to take with them all food destroying the remainder.

3. All live stock to be taken with them, each householder to organise means of herding own stock. Any stock left will be destroyed.

4. Ant householder requiring accommodation to be found (if it is possible to do so) to notify me.

(the following paragragh was scored through in pencil)

5. All householders forthwith to destroy all fire-arms and where possible to deposit remains forthwith at Village Institute.

6. Instructions are being issued in the village of Alnmouth iteself by William Earle SC. and the Vicar each being responsible for a defined area.

7. Throughout the country district of the Area each farmer is being given these directions and asked to undertake to make every householder on his farm cognisant thereof.

II. VEHICLES.

Attached hereto is a schedule of all available vehicles, cars, carriages, bicycles &c in the village of Alnmouth prepared by Tom Bickerton S.C. Similar list for the country area is being prepared by Mr Brewis of Wooden.

III. CYCLISTS.

The following cyclists have volunteered their services to be at my disposal to speedily distribute news or directions in apportioned sections of the area

IV. CROSS ROADS.

I can arrange to station Special Constables if need be at the following cross roads in my area :-

1. Hipsburn Corner.

2. Station and Lesbury Road junction.

3. High Buston Road Corner.

4. Schofield's Corner Alnmouth.

V. FOOD SUPPLIES.

For the village Mr John Earles and Mr John Moffitt are preparing comprehensive reports of food stuff in the village and also both shops and privates stores of oil supplies and will consider and undertake destruction if required.

For country areas Mr Brewis will prepare report of approximate country supplies and advise as to destruction.

Edited by SCcollector

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Another document from the same period :-

(No.1)

QUERIES FOR LOCAL EMERGENCY COMMITTEES.

1.

Q. Have badges been issued to all S.C? If not, how do you proposed to obtain them?

A. Yes. Otherwise we should apply to the Chief Constable.

2.

Are S.C.s detailed :-

a. To assist Army Supplies Officers? Yes.

b. Arrange for collection of tools, barbed wire etc..? Yes.

c. Assembly & supervision of working parties for Military work? Yes, in Alnwick & Amble sections when required.

d. To register names of labourers for above work? Yes. -ditto- -ditto-

e. For point duty at important cross roads in country, towns and villages? Yes.

f. To prevent civilias encumbering roads required by Military Authorities? Yes.

3.

Are cycle despatch riders organised and attached to Group Leaders of S.C? Yes.

4.

Have buildings been arranged as suitable for storage of tools &c.? No. but the Colliary Districts where most tools, arrangemnts made so as to

a. Is an S.C. detailed to take charge thereof? dispose of tools.

b. Is transport arranged for conveyance of tools?

5.

What arrangements have been made for the destruction of petrol, rubber tyres &c. in case of emergency?

Has a list been made of garage & cycle depots? Yes.

6.

What arrangements are made for the housing, feeding, transport & handling of refugees?

Are the routes of retirement all detailed? Yes.

7.

Have local Emergency Committees of inland districts made joint arrangements with Central Local Emergwency Committee

& gone over the ground together? Yes, but not gone over the ground together & arrangements in some receiving areas are not satisfactory.

8.

Is you local Emergency Committee in touch with its neighbouring Local Emergency Committee?

Does overlapping in works take place? Yes.

9.

Are all members of Local Emergency Committee sworn in as S.C.? Yes.

10.

Are all Emeregency Committees still complete in numbers? Yes.

11.

In the absence of Group Leaders, have deputies been warned to take their place? Yes.

12.

Have areas been selected & approved of for the collection of transport, animals, & vehicles in conjunction with

neighbouring Local Emergency Committees? Yes.

13.

Have lists been obtained of animals, motor cycles, vehicles, forage, stores etc. which may have

to be removed or destroyed? Yes.

14.

Have arrangements been made for removal custody or destruction of above when ordered? Yes.

15.

Have arrangements been made for when ordered :-

a. Demolition of bridges?

b. Bridge Buildings?

c. Blocking of roads from the Coast?

d. Removal or destruction of boats, barges etc.? No. We should rely on the Military for this.

16.

Who are the Military Officers acting in advisory capacity on the Local Emergency Committee? None.

17. State any arrangements for removal of bullion & important documents? None.

18.

Give report of any tests you may have had? Tests have been made in each area merely to give notice to Farmers for stock.

Specials at Cross Roads &c. but not dealing with the civil population except in so far

as they would go by the same routes.

Edited by SCcollector

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COUNTY OF NORTHUMBERLAND

CHIEF CONSTABLE'S OFFICE,

MORPETH,

1st February 1915.

MEMORANDUM TO SPECIAL CONSTABLES

1. The attached NOTICE of the Lord Lieutenant is being ciculated throughout the County and the Chief Constable directs all Special Constables to give effect to the provisions.

2. Your duty, therefore, in the event of an attack by aircraft, will be to wait for no further orders, but immediately to act in the district surrounding your own dwelling, or where you may be at the time, by using all your efforts towards keeping the inhabitants off the streets and generally in inducing them to carry out the suggestions contained in the NOTICE.

3. You will thoroughly visit the area for which you are acting and give assistance to those who may have been injured.

4. Should your Divisional Commander or Group Leader require extra assistance at any particular place you would receive special orders to that effect.

FULLERTON JAMES.

CHIEF CONSTABLE OF NOIRTHUMBERLAND.

NOTICE

PRECAUTIONS to be observed by the Inhabitants in the

possible Event of

ATTACK BY AIRCRAFT

________________________________________________________________________________________________

1. On the 31st December it was thought necessary to issue a PROCLAMATION dealing with the possible bombardment of the Coast of this County by the Enemy's Fleet, and recent events show that the further question of attack by Aircraft should be provided against.

2. Several of the points mentioned in the Proclamation of the 31st December apply to an Aircraft attack, as for example :-

a. The avoidance of people crowding together.

b. The great desirability of all persond remaining in their houses and not running out to the street; further

c. If an enemy Aircraft is seen or heard overhead, crowds should disperse, and all persons should, if possible, take shelter; the effects of a bomb falling on soft ground - ploughed fields etc. - are usually small and local.

3. - LIGHTS. Arrangements have now been made throughout the whole of Northumberland, by which, should any warning of the approach of enemy Aircraft at night be received, all the Town Lighting (and outside the area served by the Newcastle and Gateshead Gass Company - all private Lighting as well) will be turned off. This would necessarily be done without the possibility of communicating with the inhabitants. (This paragraph refers to Gas and Electric Lighting.)

4. Should the measures referred to in the above paragraph have to be taken, Inhabitants are WARNED :-

a. To immediately turn off the gas at their meters and gas cocks to prevent escape of gas when the gas supply is turned on:

b. To provide themselves with Candles or Lamps as the gas almost certainly, and the electricity light probably, will not be turned on again til the following morning.

5. The possibility of outbreaks of Fire in such emergencies must be provided for by the Brigades throughout the County.

6. The County Constabulary and Special Constables have already received their orders and it is most desirable that the inhabitants carry out any instructions that may be received from them.

NORTHUMBERLAND,

Lord-Lieutentant.

29 January, 1915.

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The following transcript is from William Meech (Deputy Group Leader, No.2 Group. Parish of Alnwick - part of) and gives a fascinating insight into the vehicles to be found in the town in February 1915 :-

12, Bondgate Within,

Alnwick.

17th. February 1915.

Dear Sir,

SPECIAL CONSTABLE'S VEHICLE RETURN.

The following is a list of Vehicles &c. in my District :-

CARRIAGES 14.

9. 4 Wheeled 2 Horse Carriages.

1. 4 Wheeled Phaeton.

1. Governess Car.

3. Bath Chairs (Horse Drawn).

CARTS 67.

6. Dog Carts.

3. Traps.

5. Spring Carts.

1. Pony Cart.

16. Short Carts.

8. Long Carts.

17. Heavy Carts.

2. Flat Carts.

1. Lorry.

2. Game Carts.

2. Water Carts.

1. Skeleton Brake.

1. Old Cattle Van.

2. Hay Bogies.

MOTOR CARS 4.

3. To carry 6 persons besides the driver.

1. To carry 4 persons besides the driver.

TRACTION ENGINES 2.

1. Traction Engine (not at present in my District).

1. Motor Roller.

Yors fiathfully,

William J Meech.

R.Middlemas, Esq.,

Alnwick.

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Good evening All,

I would like to draw a breath and try to get some feedback from others members.

Whilst I find the contents of this bundle fascinating I am aware of the fact that such fervour may not be universal.

I am also aware of the note made by Mervyn a few days ago asking the very perinent question about this thread being in danger of moving away from the intention(s) of its creator. If this has proved to be the case, then my profound apologies.

The bundle, in my humble opinion, needs to shared and explored in whatever forum is appropriate. Or, for that matter, a variety of 'venues', dependant on the audience.

As a collector of Special Constabulary memorabilia with a great interest in historical aspects of the subject, I am amazed at some of the content. Previous descriptions (the very few that exist) of SC activities in the Great War do not seem touch upon the very practical applications of Government policy as witnessed through these documents. Perhaps some of the later papers might add to this knowledge or lend a greater balance.

As one with an interest in our history, I am quite taken aback at the detailed planning undertaken to counter the effects of invasion. I am also very mindful of the limitations of the plan(s). I had never given much thought to the possibilty of an attack against the UK, given the realities experienced over the sea.

I have a lot more questions than answers.

A few thoughts to share. I am mindul of the fact that I could transform into a pain in the proverbial. I am also mindful of the fact that contributions to this thread have slowed considerably since my attempts to publish the Northumbrian version of War and Peace. Equally, I am mindful of my own capacity in churning out continuous contributions.

Any feedback would be most gratefully received.

Kind regards,

Kevin

Edited by SCcollector

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This is something I just got in that is a bit of whimsy but I think it fits the thread.

I don't remember these cards from when I was a kid and my father always smoked Players Navy Cut cigarettes. Perhaps this was not available here in Canada.

Anyway the item is self-explanatory.

Regards

Brian

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Hello Brian,

A lovely little card that I also have in my collection. Cicarette cards are often overlooked as a very useful source of information. The attached scan is of a WW1 postcard produced by the Ealing SCs to raise funds for the Special Constabulary (Red Cross) Ambulance Fund.

Regards,

Kevin

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Hello Brian,

I thought that you might like to take a look at some SC badges from Rotherham. This one is quite stunning and somewhat unusual. It is a Cap Badge.

Kevin

Edited by SCcollector

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Now, a question that might be answered by a member. This is another Cap Badge but the enamel is green rather than the blue normally found on Grimsby badges. Does anybody know the significance. I would suggest that it is for another rank but really don't know.

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Hi - Kevin. Draw breath !! Let some of these interesting - and I do mean that - posts get absorbed by the members reading them. Not everyone has the same deep interest in history - and , as you will know from PICA, are more artefact and badge collectors. I personally will be going back to re-read the Northumberland archive - but, have to admit that even I get 'cross eyed' from yet another list of wheelbarrows...

The WW1 Specials identification lapel pins have always had a big following and are now quite valuable - particularly the solid silver ones,as City of London. I would think the variation of colour indicates rank - as with the Met. Police. Brian showed some good ones a little while ago. The gilt one may be the Head Special ? A little side note - who knows why Grimsby has a scallop shell above the arms ?

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Hi - Kevin. Draw breath !! Let some of these interesting - and I do mean that - posts get absorbed by the members reading them. Not everyone has the same deep interest in history - and , as you will know from PICA, are more artefact and badge collectors. I personally will be going back to re-read the Northumberland archive - but, have to admit that even I get 'cross eyed' from yet another list of wheelbarrows...

The WW1 Specials identification lapel pins have always had a big following and are now quite valuable - particularly the solid silver ones,as City of London. I would think the variation of colour indicates rank - as with the Met. Police. Brian showed some good ones a little while ago. The gilt one may be the Head Special ? A little side note - who knows why Grimsby has a scallop shell above the arms ?

I don't know the specific reasons for the scallop shell on the Grimsby badge but the scallop has been used as a symbol of St. James, Methodism and fertility; there are probably other meanings but that's all I can recall at the moment.

Regards

Brian

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The badge in post 163 - is the enamel definitely green? It appears Cambridge blue on my screen, could it just be a variation in the use of a blue?

The scallop shells in the Grimsby coat of arms represent the holiday resorts around the Grimsby coast.

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The badge in post 163 - is the enamel definitely green? It appears Cambridge blue on my screen, could it just be a variation in the use of a blue?

The scallop shells in the Grimsby coat of arms represent the holiday resorts around the Grimsby coast.

Hi Leigh,

Good one, that sure makes sense.

So much for me looking too deeply for symbolism. :lol:

Regards

Brian

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No - a good guess - but it goes back to the 12th Century and the various Crusades to the Holy Land. Scallop shells were sewn onto the tunics of the pilgrims to show their destination and also, when they returned - the few that did - to show they had been. The ports of the time , from where they took passage to Europe to start the pilgrimage, identified the honour by adopting a scallop shell in the Arms. A number of towns have them - including Poole in Dorset. Where they wern't a port, it showed the local Lord had been.

Similarly, those that had made the trip are shown on their coffin sculpures as having their ankles crossed.

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Not a guess Merv, I've read it somewhere, the galleon representing ports, the scallops resorts, does'nt mean what I've read is right though. Scallops appear on coats of arms all over the shop, (including of nearby Cleethorpes) I tend to favour your version of orgin rather than the kiss me quick seaside resort though.

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Hello Mervyn,

After your question yesterday I did a bit of digging around but cannot add anything of relevance to what has already been said. References to the scallop refer to the association between Grimsby and the sea. The attached cigarette card dating from 1905 illustrates the coat of arms for the town and puts into perspective the placing of the scallop on top of the cap badge.

Edited by SCcollector

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RE :- Grimsby. During my rooting around yesterday I came across an intriguing piece of information relating to the town. The images relating to this topic were, unfortunately, copyrighted so I will attempt to explain the content.

There is in existence at Grimsby the original Roll of Honour for Grimsby County Borough Fire Brigade 1914 - 1918.

The Roll lists numerous firemen under the two headings 'Regular Firemen' and 'Special Firemen'.

A few questions come to mind on which members might perhaps give me guidance. Was Grimsby Fire Brigade run by the Borough Police during the Great War? This was very common practice in urban areas prior to WW11 but I can find no definitive answer in relation to Grimsby.

If this was the case, were the 'Special Firemen' sworn in as Special Constables for the conflict and then used exclusively to work alongside the regular 'fire bobbies'?

Are there any other examples from other parts of the Country?

I have not come across this term before and would welcome any commnet(s).

Kevin

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