Reference HO 199/397
Title Organisation of Civil Defence in the United Kingdom: memorandum by Inspector General
Former Department Reference HSI: 173/1
Government Department Ministry of Home Security
Themes Military Activity and Home Defence, Preparations for War and Peace
Subthemes Air Raid Precautions and Civil Defence, Central and local government, Pre-war planning
Document Types Reports and Surveys
Civil Defence Regions Nationwide
Organisations Civil Defence Service, Local Councils


A file of documents relating to the development, organisation, and operation of the Civil Defence Services. Subjects covered in the file include the preparation of the civil defence scheme, including preparations for industry and public utilities against gas attacks and fires; the involvement of the local authorities in the scheme; training for civil defence personnel; gas mask production; finance, including grants for local authorities; the establishment of regional headquarters; provisions for wardens; the establishment of services for first aid, rescue, decontamination, and firefighting; and the provision of hospitals. Other subjects discussed include aircraft watchers; supply depots; mobile canteens; the recruitment and terms of service of civil defence personnel; air-raid shelter provisions; welfare provisions for heavy bombing victims; the provision of information to the public; repairs to housing; debris clearance and salvage; lessons learned from the raids; the responsibilities of the authorities at each level; and the establishment of the Civil Defence Regions.


accommodation, administration, air raids, air-raid precautions, air-raid shelters, air-raid wardens, air-raid warnings, allowances, ambulances, amenities, billeting, blackout, bomb damage, civil defence, Civil Defence Regions, civilian casualties, clothing, communal feeding, communications, compensation, construction, construction materials, decontamination, depots, education, electricity, employment, evacuation, factories, family, finance, fire prevention, fire services, fires, first aid, gas, gas attacks, gas masks, grants, healthcare, homelessness, hospitals, housing, industrial production, industrial workers, industry, infrastructure, labour supply, lighting, local authorities, meals, metals, motor vehicles, police, propaganda, public health, recruitment, repair, rescue, rumours, salvage, schools, steel, tea, telephonic communications, transportation, unemployment, vocational training, volunteers, water supply, welfare, working hours

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