When Britain declared war on Nazi Germany in 1939, it did not come as a surprise.
Hitler's remilitarisation and repudiation of the Treaty of Versailles sounded a warning bell for what was to follow.
Philip MacDougall here examines what steps the British Government took to prepare the country for the war they knew was coming.
Focusing on the front-line counties of Hampshire, Sussex and Kent, he looks at how they learnt lessons from the effect of war on civilian populations during previous conflicts; the public perception of war on the home front as evidenced by Mass Observation; plans for the emergency services, food supplies, the ARP, dispersal of industry and government, and control of enemy aliens; and how effective these preparations were after the outbreak of war.
This is a must-read book for anyone interested in British history during the late thirties and early forties, and for local historians in these three counties.