The idea of forming a Camouflage Section in the BEF was first suggested at GHQ in the winter of 1915, following the success of the work of the French Camouflage Section in Amiens, whose workshop was visited by British officers. The chief means of camouflage was the painted screen, and as a result of a visit to France by a professional artist and his advice, volunteers were called for from the troops in France with experience of theatrical work, such as scenic artists, stage carpenters, workers in cardboard etc. These assembled at St Omer under an officer in January 1916 pending the fitting up of a building in Wimereux. Thus was born the camouflage service. This account goes on to give details of the first establishments and subsequent increases in establishment. The Camouflage Service was represented at GHQ, Army and Corps HQs and depots were set up corps areas and camouflage factories were formed in Army areas. By the time the war ended camouflage was ‘big’ in France and Flanders as this account reveals. American and French work in this field is also featured as well as German methods. At the end are tables of statistics showing quantities of stores and materials used.
WORK OF THE ROYAL ENGINEERS IN THE EUROPEAN WAR 1914-1918: Camouflage Service
The story of the Camouflage Service on the Western Front from first beginnings in January 1916, showing how the Service expanded to provide staffs at GHQ, Army and Corps HQs and factories and depots. American, French and German approach also discussed.