Observers in the West will be back with us again this year on Armed Forces Day,

They bring to us a replica of a wartime ‘post’, at which two observers from the Observer Corps, at any one time, would stand watch and report all aircraft movements to their local ‘Centre’.

These communications points would transmit every report straight to RAF Fighter Command HQ, so that all information (including that from RDF/RADAR) would be available to them. Fighter Command would then filter these data and make appropriate tactical decisions. A ‘scramble’ might well result!

The Royal Observer Corps (formerly Observer Corps) were formed in the South of England in 1925 and then spread group by group throughout the British mainland by WWII and was in existence until 1996.

The main task of the Royal Observer Corps was to track all aircraft flying over the UK and coastal shipping movements and report this back to HQ, so that the Home Defences could be warned of of any threat of attack and be able to act on it.

About every 5 miles there would be an ROC Observation Post manned by volunteers (Observers) from the local area and they were recruited by the Police as Special Constables prior to WWII and thereafter, by the Air Ministry.

The volunteers came from all walks of life whatever their occupation and some were as young as 15 and others well on into their 70’s and included veterans from WWI.

This is just a little taste of what they did. why not stop by the Observers in the West pitch and find out more about the ROC and what they did.