A Brief History of Civil Defence by Tim Essex-Lopresti

By Tim Essex-Lopresti

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Com have meant that the radiation from nuclear fallout would have prevented fire crews from getting within 50 to 100 miles of the scene and safely operate. For conventional bombing attacks there is no doubt that the AFS would have been an effective source of reinforcements, who in particular were very able and proficient at providing water supplies over long distances. Associated Newspapers Associated Newspapers Above Left: Training on a ‘Bikini’ at Morton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, September 1960 Above Right: Green Goddess at Aberfan, October 1966 (see also previous chapter).

Ration, fuel and ammunition dumps were the main risks protected by the companies. The dumps varied from small railheads to areas of 25 square miles with petrol storage amounting to millions of gallons. Most of these dumps had little or no water supplies and so the construction and filling of emergency water supply tanks became a high priority for NFS personnel. Fires were frequent and because of the materials involved they were often very dangerous. It was not long before the whole of No 4 Column was spread over Holland, France, Belgium and Luxembourg.

The dogs were said to have rescued over 2,500 people over the years and one, called Barry, saved about 40 lives in the early 19th century. One of the dogs ever since has been called Barry in his honour and the new foundation is also to bear his name. Birmingham Civil Defence Search and Rescue dogs, around 1960.

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