If the Invader comes


A remarkable document, kindly supplied by Robert Selvey. Please click for a larger version.

Here’s a brilliant bit of pre-war ephemera kindly supplied by top photographer and local history buff Robert Selvey. Robert was the kind chap who supplied the wonderful image of Stubbers Green way back around the time the blog started.

Robert speaks wonderfully of the great Jack Haddock – recently featured in the article where I enquired about local air-raid shelters; Jack is a local legend, who has done so much to preserve and tell the story of Walsall’s history. This blog stands on the shoulders of work by historians and great townspeople like Jack, and I agree totally with Robert’s sentiments.

If Jack is reading this, thanks old chap. You are the spirit of Walsall.

Robert wrote:

Hi Bob

Nice to see my old mate Jack Haddock feature in a recent post. Jack also used the Anderson shelter as his workplace for many years, turning out copper coach horns which were then taken for finishing to Caldmore in Walsall. It was the felxibility offered by this work that allowed him to be such a prolific photographer of all things transport related around Walsall. He also took many shots of places that are changed or long gone, leaving us with a resource that is invaluable to local historians. Jack is still an active octogenarian but his bicycle mileages have dropped of late!

Talking of air raids, I also have a photocopy of the attached document here in my files, more to do with what happens if the enemy invade but still ‘on topic’ I feel. There is a fabulous book entitled A.R.P by J B S Haldane F.R.S. that covers in detail the effects of a blitz. This was published in 1938 and draws a lot of it’s conclusions from the bombing that was carried out in the Spanish Civil War during that decade. As you can see from the date, this was before the Second World War had begun and was published to give the British public a taste of what to expect. Rereading the forward to the book it is obvious the author believed the government of the day had no wish to warn the public, as presumably as this would have caused general alarm. With hindsight, the great British public showed greater courage and stoicism than they were credited with.

As ever, hope of some interest to you.


invaders copy 2

Hide your bicycles! Scan generously supplied by Robert Selvey. Please click for a larger version.

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1 Response to If the Invader comes

  1. Pedro says:

    You can buy the original leaflet on ebay for 25 quid!

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