Swakeleys Home Guard (1944) Association

Rear of Ickenham Village Hall
33a Swakeleys Road
UB10 8DG

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The Home Guard was formed during the second World War as a British defence force to protect Britain from a German invasion. It consisted of unpaid male volunteers between the ages of 17 and 65. They were first recruited in 1940 as the Local Defence Volunteers (LDV), whose responsibilities included guard duties, patrolling key areas, and manning anti-aircraft guns and searchlights. Winston Churchill renamed the LDV the 'Home Guard' which, at its highest peak, had nearly two million volunteers. The Home Guard was disbanded at the end of the War, leaving a heritage of a remarkable spirit of comradeship which led to the formation of societies and associations all over Britain.


The members of the Home Guard for the Ickenham area were local men enlisted in 'A' company, 14th Middlesex Battalion, with their headquarters located at Church Farm, Ickenham (on the site of the present Shell petrol garage). On the 14th May 1941 an excise licence was granted for the sale of intoxicating liquor to Home Guard members from a canteen within the headquarters. The present Association was formed on the 19th September 1944 'to perpetuate the esprit de corps which was the outstanding feature of the Home Guard during its activities'. The Association moved to the Old Farm Cottage at number 1 Swakeleys Road, Ickenham and then, in 1954, transferred to its present building which was formally opened on the 21st May 1954 by the then President of the Association, Brigadier E. W. C. Flavell, DSO, MC, TD, DL.


Over the years the number of ex-servicemen has declined and the association currently has some 100 members drawn from the local area. With its bar, darts, skittles and shove- ha'penny, the Association exists for the quiet enjoyment of its members. There are several regular openings of the Clubhouse during the week as well as a number of special occasions during the year, such as barbeques and quiz nights. Money is collected each year to assist various local charities and due regard is paid to the Home Guard Memorial Window in St Giles Church, Ickenham. The Clubhouse is run and maintained on a voluntary basis by the members.