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Author Topic: Home Guard misdemeanors..  (Read 3998 times)
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John
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« Reply #15 on: March 14, 2013, 16:59:32 PM »

Dover Express - Friday 29 October 1943

Said to be the first prosecution in Canterbury, Archibald Marsh, Home Guard, was fined £1, and £1 11s. 5d. costs, on Friday last for non-attendance. He was said have done only one parade in 24.
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« Reply #16 on: March 14, 2013, 17:13:46 PM »

Dover Express - Friday 01 September 1944

BUS DRIVER AND HOME GUARD DUTIES. FINE FOR NON-ATTENDANCE.
At Folkestone last week, Horace Carey, a well known East Kent bus driver, was fined £1 on each of two summonses for failing to attend Home Guard parades. It was stated that defendant was directed into the Home Guard in January, 1943, and had never attended a parade. He was served with a notice to attend certain parades by Lieut. Lynch as he was seated in a bus at Pencester Gardens, Dover. The defendant, in a letter, to an officer, begun "Dear Tom," said that in addition "to the bus job of driving, largely to a time schedule in excess of 40 miles an hour, he had to do from 12 to 16 hours weekly travelling to and from work." He said that the whole of his spare time was occupied with domestic duties. (Evidence had stated that defendant was a single man, living alone in a flat at Hythe.) A registered letter was sent to defendant when he failed to attend the first parade, and Lieut. McKay received a reply which started off "Dear Mac," but that was crossed out and "Sir" put on.

It continued: "I have received a communication informing me that the excuses I made for being unable attend parades at Cheriton have no interest with headquarters. In view of the tone of the letter, should those of military age at headquarters, who enjoy the war-time luxury of a car, care to give the so-called excuses a personal trial, maybe they would learn to appreciate and be convinced that the difficulties which I stated are very real and are not excuses. I apologise of the annoyance caused by me in addressing another member as "Dear Tom.'"

Mr. Bonniface, who prosecuted, said that on one of the days the defendant was not working. A bus was provided on Sunday mornings from Horn Street, Hythe, to take the members to Cheriton and return. The Company was composed largely of drivers, all doing the same work as defendant.

Lieut. McKay gave evidence, and in cross-examination said that he understood that on occasions no one had turned up on parade. He had not seen, but only heard men talking about a "round robin," signed by 23 men, complaining about their time being wasted. He could not say if defendant was one of the original seven men who volunteered for the Home Guard. He knew the defendant had asked to be transferred to Hythe, and the letter had gone to headquarters, but did not know why it had not been sanctioned. Lieut. Lynch said that, according to their records, defendant had not served before 1943.

Mr. G. Lush, who defended, said that defendant considered that things could be made easier for him by being transferred. Defendant served his country in the last war, and volunteered at once for the Home Guard when it started.

The Chairman, in announcing the fine, said that the Bench wondered why the application for transfer was not considered.
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« Reply #17 on: March 14, 2013, 17:20:57 PM »

Dover Express - Friday 20 October 1944

HOME GUARD COLONEL CHARGED.
A retired Brigadier of the British and Canadian Armies, and at present a Lieut.-Colonel in charge of a works Home Guard unit, John Mervyn Prower (59), of Southfields, Rochester, was, at Chatham on Wednesday last week charged with indecently assaulting a child, aged 4 years and 11 months. Prower, who was represented by Miss Knight Dix, Counsel, pleaded not guilty, elected to go for trial, and reserved his defence. He was committed to the West Kent Quarter Sessions, which opened on the Thursday, and are being resumed this week.
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« Reply #18 on: March 14, 2013, 18:04:20 PM »

Dover Express - Friday 20 October 1944

HOME GUARD COLONEL CHARGED. A retired Brigadier of the British and Canadian Armies, and at present a Lieut.-Colonel in charge of a works Home Guard unit, John Mervyn Prower (59), of Southfields, Rochester, was, at Chatham on Wednesday last week charged with indecently assaulting a child, aged 4 years and 11 months. Prower, who was represented by Miss Knight Dix, Counsel, pleaded not guilty, elected to go for trial, and reserved his defence. He was committed to the West Kent Quarter Sessions, which opened on the Thursday, and are being resumed this week.

 Embarrassed Dear me - even then!
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« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2013, 19:48:31 PM »

Dover Express - Friday 12 May 1944

SMOKING IN A SHELTER. A FINE OF £1.
At the Dover Police Court on Friday last, before Messrs. G. Golding and C. Byford, Albert Richard Amos, of 27, Hamilton Road, was summoned for smoking in a public shelter in Noah's Ark Road, on April 20th, contrary to Rule 4 (c) of the Public Shelter Rules made by the Regional Commissioner under the Defence (General) Regulations. Defendant did not appear, but wrote admitting the offence.

Mr. S. R. H. Loxton (Town Clerk), prosecuting, said that a police constable asked defendant to stop smoking in the shelter, and he declined. Some of the public shelters in Dover were crowded on occasions, and that one in particular. There was a shelling alert on at the time and the shelter was full. There was no need for him point out the appalling atmospheric conditions that would prevail in the shelters if the rule regarding smoking was not enforced, and for a man in defendant's position to take up the attitude he did was very deplorable indeed, and showed a lack of co-operation on his part with the endeavours the Corporation made to keep the shelters in a healthy, clean and decent condition, so that those who took cover were put to as little inconvenience as possible.

P.C. Prestidge said that at 11.20 p.m. he was at the Noah's Ark end of the shelter, and there was a number of people, including the defendant, between the two top blast walls. Amos was smoking. Witness asked the people to move beyond the blast walls, which they did with the exception of Amos. He was smoking, and witness asked him to stop and move back, but he again refused, and said that he was a company commander of the Home Guard and was not going to move because he might be called on duty. Amos continued smoking. When asked for his identity card, he produced a Home Guard pass and said that his identity card was at home. Amos added. "I am not going be treated like the women and children in the shelter," and went outside. Amos went home, and returned in the uniform of a captain of the Home Guard, and said that he would make witness respect him. Amos produced an identity card, and said, "This is only a scrap of paper as far as I am concerned. My military pass is my identity." Witness told him he would be reported, and he said, "Put away your pencil; it is only a waste of time." There was a shelling warning on, and the shelter was crowded.

In reply to the Chairman, Inspector Fenn, Sub-Controller of the Civil Defence, said that there was a large notice in the shelter stating that smoking was prohibited. The Magistrates' Clerk said that there was a long letter from defendant about his Home Guard duties, and at the end he stated that he had no desire to interfere or cause annoyance to any constable on duty. He admitted that he was smoking at the time. The Chairman said that as it was the first case of its kind the Bench were taking a lenient view and only fining defendant £1. it should be a warning to others. The Bench considered that the attitude of the constable was quite correct.
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Knouterer
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« Reply #20 on: March 08, 2014, 15:20:05 PM »

An official document (attached to WO 199/3247, returns of strength and equipment of the HG), with explanations about the legal status of the HG and disciplinary matters, undated but from 1943 or possibly 1944 (sorry about the poor quality)

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HomeGuard1 002.jpg
HomeGuard2 001.jpg
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HomeGuard5 001.jpg
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« Reply #21 on: September 01, 2014, 09:52:30 AM »

Surrey Mirror - Friday 19 February 1943

NUTFIELD YOUTH FINED FOR ABSENCE.
A South Nutfield youth, now aged 19, Denis Hall, 9, Ridge Cottages, who volunteered for the L.D.V. in March, 1941, was fined £4 at the Oxted Court on Monday for absenting himself from four Home Guard parades without reasonable cause. He pleaded not guilty. Lieut. H. G. Mardell said Hall was a member of his platoon and joined the Home Guard (then L.D.V.) in March, 1941. From February 16th last year to December 20th he attended no parades at all.

Sergt. Albert Taylor said he saw Hall on November 21st. and handed him an order to attend drills. He said "I don’t think I will." Asked later why he did not obey the order, Hall said he had a bad leg, and referred him to his doctor. Major Brian Dixon said he told Hall on November 4th the medical officer said he was perfectly fit and could attend parades providing he did not wear leggings or did much marching. Hall said he would not come to parades.

Major Dr. R. D. O’Leary said some six years ago Hall was treated in hospital for a diseased condition of the bone of the left leg. This had left a scar, which, except for a very small part, had healed, and Hall was not incapacitated in any way. As a precaution, if slacks and shoes were worn, there was no likelihood of the scar being rubbed and he would not be prevented from carrying out his duties. Defendant handed up a piece of bone, which he said was taken from his leg about six months ago, and Dr. O’Leary said when this came out the healing process was starting.

Col. Ian Anderson M.C., Battalion Commander, said when it was reported to him Hall had been absent from parades he decided to interview him personally. Hall told him he would not attend any more parades, and that his leg was in such a condition that he could not attend. Told it was understood he had been playing football, Hall said he had not done so for a month. Hall, in evidence, declared he told Col. Anderson he had not played football for two or three months. He was employed as a lorry driver and when he got home from work sometimes he could hardly stand and his leg felt dead. He had not played football since he had been reported absent from Home Guard parades. He agreed he used to ride a motor cycle and did voluntary work as a dispatch rider for his firm.

The Chairman (Mr. P. H. Elliott) told Hall his disregard of the national duty to which he had pledged himself rendered him liable to imprisonment, but as this was the first case of the kind in that Court he would be fined.
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« Reply #22 on: October 05, 2015, 18:10:53 PM »

I found this article in the National Newspaper Archives whilst looking for something else. The case of a very senior Home Guard Commander being complicit in the removal of items from a shot down enemy aircraft which crash landed neat Maidstone. Quite an interesting 'defence' the senior officer put forward to try to get himself off the hook !!

Kent & Sussex Courier - Friday 25 October 1940

EXTRAORDINARILY BAD EXAMPLE

HOME GUARD COMMANDER FINED £50

Held Himself to be a Person of Authority

AFTER MESSERSCHMITT HAD BEEN BROUGHT DOWN


"We are surprised that an officer like you should be guilty of such conduct.  It was an extraordinarily bad example to members of the public. You will be fined £50 and your daughter will be bound over for twelve months" This rebuke came from Major General Sir A. Lynden-Bell when he imposed the penalty on Lieutenant-Colonel John Alexander Geary, DSO, of Strettit Place, East Peckham, at Malling Petty Sessions, Kent, on Monday.

Colonel Geary was charged with that on August 31st at Hunton he did in relation to certain property, an act, calculated to falsely suggest that property had not been appropriated on behalf of His Majesty for examination by an RAF Intelligence Officer.  His daughter Jacqueline was charged with that on the same occasion she did find articles which she did reasonably have cause t believe to be lost or abandoned, and that immediately before being lost or abandoned they were used as part of an armed force , and she did remove the articles without permission being granted by or on behalf of The Admiralty of The Secretary of State.

MESSERSCHMITT SHOT DOWN
Mr Eric Weale prosecuted and said that at about 1.25 on 31st August a Messerschmitt had been shot down and landed at Court Farm, Hunton and PC Bailey was instructed to guard the plane and see that nothing was removed before the arrival of the RAF Intelligence Officer.  The Home Guard had sentries posted and Special Constables were on  duty to prevent sight seekers and trophy hunters getting too close. About 4.30 Colonel Geary and his daughter, accompanied by two ladies arrived. Colonel Geary was in a Colonel's uniform and wore a LDV badge.  The Constable saluted him and Colonel Geary began to inspect the aircraft.  The constable then noticed that Miss Geary had a gauge taken from the aircraft, and he asked her to put it back, and at the same time explaining that nothing was to be taken before the arrival of the RAF Intelligence Officer.  Colonel Geary then saw a machine gun belt with ammunition.  He said he wanted some as he had a German rifle.  PC Bailey again said that nothing was to be removed but Colonel Geary said that all the RAF wanted were maps, charts, log books and any new feature "Tell him I want 50 or 100 rounds delivered to The Platoon Commander's House".

The constable then saw that Miss Geary had other parts from the aircraft and he again told her that nothing was to be removed and asked her to put them back in the machine. She put some back but kept parts of the oxygen outfit and he asked her to put them back into the cockpit. Colonel Geary then said  "How dare you speak to my daughter like that , they are of no importance , I told her to take them".  He was holding himself to be a person of importance and his authority was to take them, but in fact he had no authority whatsoever to interfere. Whether he was in a temper or not, PC Bailey could not tell, but Mr Hubble, The Senior ARP Warden, who had heard it all, thought that he needed to speak to Colonel Geary about the way that he had spoken to the constable. He pointed out that the constable was only doing his duty and it was unfair to interfere with him.

SHOULD HAVE KNOWN BETTER
Miss Geary was still tampering with the machine and still had part of it in her hand and Colonel Geary said that it was of no importance and he had given it to her. "Here is a man", said Mr Weale, "who had some authority, a retired Colonel and a Commander of the Home Guard and should have known better than to have acted as he did, and he had set a very bad example to other people" . All over the Country there were problems with people trying to get souvenirs, and punishments were becoming increasingly severe.  He was bound to say that at all times PC Bailey was courteous and polite. Colonel Geary then said "Come along Jacqui, we will hear more of this".  Mr Weale said "This was a man in a position of authority threatening a constable doing his duty".

At the time of the offence there were Home Guards posted as sentries but as soon as Colonel Geary left in a temper the Home Guard were called away.  He did not know why but probably Colonel Geary could offer an explanation.  The result was that the duties of the police were made much more difficult in keeping the souvenir hunters away.  Instead of setting a good example he had set a very bad example and caused difficulties that should never had arisen.  Evidence in support of this statement was given by PC C.G. Bailey, Mr Stuart Hubble, Captain C.G. Devas and Mr Sidney B. Neale.

COLONEL - "I WAS RESPONSIBLE"
Colonel Geary said that he was a Company Commander of The Home Guard and on 31st August he was acting under the orders of a superior authority. He was in charge of the armed guard and the guard was to look after Government property. "I was the Officer Commanding and I was responsible to His Majesty for the property I was looking after". Colonel Geary then produced a copy of 'Army Council Instructions' but said that he could not make them public.

The Chairman ( Major General Sir A. Lynden-Bell ) You say that you were there by order of Army Council Instructions and you were in charge ? - Yes, that is my sole defence and I am prepared to prove my orders.
The Chairman : Which you do not think should be published - No Sir.
Mr Weale : You were of the opinion that you were in charge of that machine ? - I do not say that , but I was in charge of Government property somewhere in England. I was in charge of my troops and had not handed over to anyone.
Mr Weale : Under the terms of your so called authority, had you any instructions to take any part of the 'plane or interfere with it ? - I do not choose to discuss my instructions.
Mr Weale : Did you say to PC Bailey "I told her to take them?" - I do not wish to discuss what I said while on parade with my troops.
Mr Weale then intimated that he did not intend to ask any further questions but would leave it to The Bench to deal with the matter in their own way.

Announcing the decision of The Bench Sir A. Lynden-Bell said "We are surprised that an officer like Colonel Geary should be guilty of such conduct. It was an extraordinarily bad example to the public. You will be fined £50 and your daughter will be bound over for twelve months"
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Knouterer
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« Reply #23 on: October 08, 2015, 22:00:39 PM »

Of course, the Home Guard was not only sinning, but also being sinned against, so I'll permit myself to post this little item (can't remember what website I lifted it from, sorry). It gives an interesting insight in British society in a bygone age, I think.

"A MEETING of the CONSERVATORS of ASHDOWN FOREST
A MEETING of the Board duly convened and held at The Village Hall, Forest Row, on Wednesday, 10th July, 1940, at 2.0 p.m.
J.R. Owen, Esq. ,J.P. Chairman
Mr. J. Godwin King, Esq. C.B.E. Vice Chairman
Colonel A. E. Barchard
J.H.H. Griffin, Esq.
G.D. Haslam, Esq. J.P.
Lt. Col. G.R. Miller, D.S.O.
F.E. Richards, Esq.
Major Gen. Sir H. Bruce Williams, K.C.B.
A.F. Harland, Esq.
S.J. Marsh, Esq.
Wm. Mitchell, Esq.
F.T. Ridley, Esq.
Apologies for absence were received from Admiral Beamish, Mr. John Rowe and Mr. C.H.H. Adams.

IN COMMITTEE.

1. Head Ranger. The Chairman reported that a complaint had been made by a local Section Commander of the L.D.V. that on a recent evening Ranger Nicholas whilst riding his motorcycle without a light was challenged by L.D.V. pickets. He failed to answer the challenge or to produce his identity card when asked and became abusive.
He also failed to produce his pass as Ranger. On receipt of the complaint the Chairman had asked the Ranger for an explanation. The latter had at first denied the allegations but afterwards admitted them, and proffered his resignation. The Chairman reported that there had been previous complaints of the Ranger's lack of manners. In other respects he had carried out his duties in a satisfactory manner and he had informed the Ranger that the matter would have to be reported to the Board. It was RESOLVED that the Head Ranger be instructed to appear before the Board.
The Head Ranger having appeared was admonished by the Chairman and informed him that he would be put on probation for three months and that if there was any further cause for complaint he would be dismissed immediately.
The Board then went out of Committee."

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« Reply #24 on: October 09, 2015, 08:15:14 AM »

It gets worse !!!!!!

Sussex Agricultural Express - Friday 16 August 1940

HOME GUARD SUMMONED

Percy Hobden, of Horam, was summoned at Uckfield Police Court on Thursday last week with riding a bicycle without a front light at Waldron on July 23rd.  He was stopped at 11.40pm by W.R. Durrant who said the defendant, a member of The L.D.V had no lamp on his machine.  The defendant said that he had an urgent message to deliver and thought it was his duty to do so.  The summons was dismissed


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« Reply #25 on: December 09, 2016, 10:13:16 AM »

Thanet Advertiser - Tuesday 21 March 1944

MISUSED PETROL. HOME GUARD OFFICER FINED.
Henry G. Clements, 70-year-old licensee of the Crown Inn, Sarre, and a lieutenant in the Home Guard, was fined 10s., with £1 7s, costs, at St. Augustine's Sessions, Canterbury, on Wednesday, for misusing petrol allowed him as a Home Guard officer. Mr. T. T. Cropper prosecuted and Mr. C. A. Gardner, for defendant, admitted a technical offence.

The case for the prosecution was that the petrol was allowed defendant in order to drive to Herne Bay and collect subsistence money from Lloyds Bank for the men. On 1st January he paid an abortive visit to the bank, as it was closed, and he went again the following week. On each occasion, instead of returning by the direct route, he admitted that he visited an old friend at Herne Bay, went to see his daughter at the Fox and Hounds, and then returned via Blean Woods to Sarre, having gone some seven miles out of his way.

Lt.-Col. C. S. F. Witts, defendant's C. O., said defendant was allowed a gallon of petrol weekly for Home Guard duties and was not permitted to deviate from the direct route. Defendant was very patriotic and showed it by his good work for the Home Guard.

In evidence defendant said that with his work and Home Guard duties he had no spare time. He went to Herne Bay by the direct route and visited his daughter to help her, for which he had previously been allowed petrol but it had been stopped. Witness told Mr. Cropper that he could not recall telling the constable that he had visited his daughter in that way on 20th November, 4th and 11th December and 1st and 8th January.

Mr. Gardner said defendant had never drawn a penny from the Home Guard.
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« Reply #26 on: May 03, 2017, 22:44:00 PM »

Thanet Advertiser - Friday 31 March 1944

FAILED WILFULLY IN HIS DUTY. MARGATE HOME GUARD FINED.
When George Ernest Philpott, aged 28, a member of the Home Guard, of Byron-avenue, Margate, appeared before the magistrates at Margate police court on Wednesday on three summonses for failing to attend parades, the Chairman (Alderman F. J. Comford) said the bench considered it a serious case of wilfully failing to carry out his duly. Philpott was fined £1 on each of the three summonses.

Mr. T. Cropper, who prosecuted, said between August and October last there were 29 parades and defendant did not attend one. He was therefore served with a notice instructing him to attend specifically on 26th and 31st October and 2nd November, but he did not so. On 9th November a letter was sent to him asking what excuse he had to offer. In his reply he referred to the fact that at his medical examination for the Army he was placed in grade four and stated that he had been turned down for A.R.P. work as unfit. He asked for a medical examination.

Lighter Duties
This was arranged and the doctor suggested that he should be allocated a lighter type duties. Arrangements were made for this to be done and he was instructed to attend parade on 2nd December, but he did not do so, and had not attended any parade since. The parades did not interfere with his hours of work.

Evidence was given by Major William Thomas Jarman, of the Home Guard, in support of Mr. Cropper's statement. He said defendant had been a member for about two years and lived about 500 yards from the drill hall. The parades were 7.30 to p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays and 10 a.m. to 12 on Sundays.

Dr. E. J. Bradley, medical officer to the Home Guard, said, he examined defendant on 20th November and came to the conclusion that he was fit for a lighter type of duties, including guard duty.

Albert Port, manager of the firm by whom defendant was employed as a lorry driver, said on 26th October he worked from 7.30 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. and on 2nd December from 7 am. to 5.30 p.m. He did not work on 31st October, which was a Sunday.

Worked Hard All Day
Defendant told the bench that he worked hard all day and did not feel he could do any more in the evenings. He suffered with his heart and with blood pressure and could not walk very much. He was medically examined last year for A.R.P. work but was not accepted owing to his health. He did fire-guard duty once a week at his place of employment.

Cross-examined, defendant said he could not remember when he last attended a parade, and admitted that he had not made any effort to attend.

Mr. Cropper: Is it not a fact that you have been pleading Home Guard duties as a reason for exemption from fire-guard duty?

Defendant: No, sir.

Have you not informed the Fire Prevention Officer of the borough that you are in the Home Guard and exempt from fire-guard duty?

No.

You were well aware that if you attended parades you would be given light duties?

Yes.

Defendant said in reply to further questions that he had not had to consult a doctor in regard to his health, and had only had three or four days off from work recently for illness. He agreed that it was not until he was served with a notice and knew that a prosecution might follow that he asked for a medical examination.

After announcing the fines, the Mayor said to defendant "If you fail to carry out your duties in the future and are brought before the court again you will be much more severely dealt with."
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« Reply #27 on: May 04, 2017, 10:20:46 AM »

In 1939, George E Philpott(23.7.1915) with wife Irene Maude(21.3.1920) at 9 Beatrice Rd, Margate. He was  a Lorry Driver-Heavy Worker.

Believe he died Dec 1963 Thanet.

Fined a total of £3. Today that would be worth around £120.
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