This coming Saturday is the first Scottish wargame show for a very long time; Carronade at Falkirk. Andy McGeary and I are putting on a game for GDWS based on the Home Guard and Operation Sea Lion, the planned invasion of Britain in 1940. We had planned it for last year's 80th anniversary, but Hitler did plan to return the following spring, so we are not too far off.
My background research included Stephen Cullen's book 'In Search of the Real Dad's Army', which separates fact from fiction. There are also the two Bolt Action supplements for the campaign.
Their function was to defend places of tactical importance, man roadblocks, and observe the enemy. However, most thought their role was to hunt down the parachutists and ‘fifth columnists’ of popular media imagination. Equipment improved with the purchase of Enfield rifles from US stocks, with BARs and Lewis Guns. A wide range of improvised vehicles were developed, including the Armadillo armoured truck. Formal military ranks were introduced in November 1940.
On 16 July 1940, Hitler issued Führer Directive No. 16, preparing for a landing in Britain. The code name for the invasion was Seelöwe (Sea Lion). It was subject to four pre-conditions, including the destruction of the RAF and clearing and securing the Channel. The initial plan was for a broad front across the south coast. However, the Luftwaffe and Kriegsmarine argued for a narrow front that could be defended. The first wave would consist of nine divisions landing on the Kent and Sussex coast, plus a single airborne division. The defence plan envisaged a ‘crust’ on the coast, supported by several stop lines (with anti-tank obstacles) and a mobile reserve.
|British regulars in the relief column|
|Got to have a telephone box!|
|And Winston! Not sure about Captain Pugwash though.|