Between 1939 and 1945, while its young men were away fighting, their fathers and uncles were preparing to defend the nation in the event of invasion.

The society is now trying to put names to faces in these pictures of the Home Guard to help with a project on village life during the Second World War.

The society has received a £17,000 lottery grant to research A Village at War, a project it is undertaking to find out what life was like between 1939 and 1945, with the aim of producing a DVD on the village’s history.

They would like to know if anyone can identify members of the Dilton Marsh Home Guard and American soldiers, who were based in camps nearby or give any information about the period.

Bill Jarvis, 66, a retired civil engineer who lives at Red Pit, Dilton Marsh, is one the team of the researchers. He said: “We will be putting together a DVD with interviews, pictures, maps and other reminders of that time.”

The society is also looking for people who have information on life in the community and women at war.

Mr Jarvis said: “Many of the American troops were based in the area just before D-Day. This included black Americans from the 960th Quartermaster Company, who were based here from February to August 1944.

“For many black soldiers life in Wiltshire came as an awakening. They faced segregation in the United States, but were treated as equals here.

“They had a camp somewhere in the area. We are in touch with a soldier in the United States, but as yet we have no further information about their whereabouts.”

The society will have a stall at the Dilton Marsh Carnival on Saturday from 11.30am-3.30pm at the primary school for anyone interested in finding out more about the project.

Anyone who has information that could be helpful should contact Graham Noble on 01373 859770.