This film is part of Free

War Weapons Week 1941

A readiness to do whatever is needed, and a certain nonchalance, is evident in these service personnel as they march to raise money, looking confident in their ultimate victory.

Home movie 1941 11 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for Yorkshire Film Archive


Nearly two years into the war, and still much looks ad hoc and improvised on this fundraising parade for weapons through the streets of Chapeltown in South Yorkshire in 1941. Vans get commandeered to help in fire fighting and first aid, while the squaddies, marching with a certain swagger, look distinctly shorter than the policemen marching with them. And afterwards, the women try their hands at cricket and darts.

This film is one of several made by a local dentist, Willie Thorne, of activities in Chapeltown during the war. Before the US entered the war, and still with the threat of invasion, War Weapon Weeks was a way to encourage people to save in War Bonds and similar Government schemes to help re-arm. Chapeltown was close to Sheffield’s munitions production, and to Newton Chambers, which produced 1,160 Churchill tanks during the war. It had an anti-aircraft gun site situated to protect these targets from Luftwaffe attacks. Most of the local men worked in coal mining, a reserved occupation, while many women worked in the munitions factories in Sheffield. The town also took in refugees from the London Blitz.