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book and where the A.A. has caught a very fair likeness at the top of the page.

Coming nearer home, are our friends Inspector Watts and Sergeant Webb of the Aldridge Police, and Inspector Gittings of the Brownhills Police, who, from the very first, have been very helpful neighbours indeed. In fact the Police have played a very important part in the H.G. world. Our early organizing efforts revolved round their several stations, and throughout our history we have called on them for advice and help, which has always been given unsparingly.

Then comes the Civil Defence - our cousins in the family of Defence. They have played with us on many occasions, often to their annoyance and disappointment because we were not always in a position to supply them with the casualties they so badly needed for exercise. Names like Partridge, Waine, Hall, Udall and Edwards will all be remembered for their help to us.

Nor shall we ever forget Mrs. Hampson, Mrs. Parsley and their helpers. How good naturedly they turned out with the mobile canteens whenever called upon, and at ungodly hours, to bring welcome refreshment to our men.

Had one the space there are so many more of our neighbours who could be included, but the list would be quite inadequate without recalling the name of Gwinnett and his Darlaston men, who were detailed


to help in our area if need arose, and Lieut.Colonel Burn and the 27th (Walsall) Battalion, who were always ready to co-operate.

In the early days our energies were eaten up by guards and patrols and administrative problems. It was not until the October of 1940 that we had our first Battalion Exercise. The other day I was reading through the operational orders sent to companies during that Exercise, and I blush to think of the complete disregard of the state of training of the companies and the hopelessly inadequate communications by which they were to be carried out in the time available.

But of all the early exercises, the most memorable was the attack on Walsall in the summer of 1941. From the point of view of a good time being had by all, it was a great success. One half of the battalion attacked along the line of the Lichfield Road, the other, and smaller half, attacking between the Birmingham Road and Sutton Road. Tanks were out, and Montgomery himself could not have had more enterprising tank commanders than we had that day. Of course, there was no cohesion, and not one of us had any knowledge of tank tactics. You will remember how we went straight through the enemy's outposts and finished up with a grand melee round the Walsall Battalion's H.Q. A very successful operation, due largely to the fact that no - or very few umpires - were out that day.