['Who Do You Think You Are Kidding, Mr. Hitler'? plays, sung by Bud Flanagan]
[Scene: Church hall in the Sussex town of Walmington-on-Sea, south-east England. A small snow fall happened overnight]
Captain Mainwaring: 'Right, Wilson, get the men at attention'
Sergeant Wilson: 'Yes, sir. Would you chaps mind awfully coming to attention?'
Mainwaring: 'Now, men, I have called you here for this emergency meeting because, as you know, there was a mild snow shower last night.'
Corporal Jones: 'Snow! Don't panic, Mr. Mainwaring! Don't panic! [panics]
Mainwaring: 'Attention! But shall we let England come to a standstill because of some frozen rain?'
All the men: 'Yes'
Mainwaring: 'Pull yourselves together, men! There's a war on, and we must not crumble, we must stand firm against the Germans, we must -'
Private Frazer: 'Has there been some snow here? Cannae say Ah noticed it'
Mainwaring: ''Yes, thank you, Frazer. Now Jones, bring your lorry round here, we must go and dig out some houses that may be cut off by the snow'
Jones: 'Yes, sir!' [leaves the hall]
Private Pike: 'My mum says that it's not good for me to be out in such very cold weather'
Frazer: 'Ya namby-pamby Sassenach, it snows eight months of the year where I come frae! Driving in it is a way of life, so is working in it, nobody notices it unless it gets too warm in January'
Mainwaring: 'Outside at the double, men!' [all go outside where it's getting dark, leaving the lit door open. The local ARP Warden arrives]
ARP Warden Hodges: 'Put that light out! What are you doing here today, Napoleon? It's Thursday'
Mainwaring: 'We are having a special emergency meeting due to the dreadful weather conditions. Many here in Walmington-on-Sea are trapped in their homes, my men will be needed to dig them out. What was that, Frazer?'
Hodges: 'You'll probably end up retreating like you're at Moscow, Napoleon!'
Mainwaring: 'My men will show the English wartime spirit, by -'
Hodges: 'Well, you'd better get on with it, then, it's starting to snow again'
Mainwaring: 'Right, men! Get shovels at once'
Wilson: 'But where from, sir?'
Mainwaring: 'Use your initiative, Wilson' [Jones's lorry drives slowly towards them, slithering from side to side]
Jones: 'It's all right, Mr.Mainwaring, I've got it under control!'
Frazer: 'You old fool, ye dinnae drive like that in snow! Get out and let me do it!'
Jones: 'There's no problem with the lorry, Mr.Mainwaring! I can -' [slowly skids into a telegraph pole and breaks a headlight]
Hodges: 'Ha ha ha ha ha!' [leaves, humming the 1812 Overture tune]
Private Walker: 'I can get you a dozen spades, Mr. Mainwaring, only a fiver for the lot'
Mainwaring: 'Well done, Walker, that's just the sort of action that we need in this crisis'
[scene fades to Flanagan and Allen singing 'Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow']
[Scene: church hall, all the men are back there]
Mainwaring: 'Well, men, we're snowed in here now, has anyone got any ideas how to get out again?'
Jones 'Permission to speak, sir'
Mainwaring: 'Yes, Jones?'
Jones: 'What if we turn on the radio, they may have some advice for us'
Mainwaring: 'Good thinking, Jones. Pike, turn that radio on and get the Home Service'
Pike: 'Uncle Arthur, I'm frightened to turn it on in case I get a shock'
Mainwaring: 'Stupid boy!' [goes and turns it on himself]
Radio: 'This is the BBC Home Service. And here is the news. The south of England has had its worst snow for over thirty years, and many businesses and public transport came to a halt. Forecasters expect it to get colder this week, so please stay at home and cry to yourselves while the north of England, Scotland and Wales carry on quite normally. In other news dictator Adolf Hitler made a speech about the English weather situation. [ranting and shouting in German starts in the background] He said -
'See how weak the English are, making a huge drama about snow we have every day at the Berghof! See the British cower under the humble snowflake! It is a Jewish plot to try and weaken them, the Jews have sold them motor cars that heat the air and affect the weather, it is usually too cold to snow in January there.'
'But Germany will never accept defeat again! Not even if the snow is ten metres deep will we give in the struggle against the Englanders and their skiving off work and really laughing at home at their television news programmes! Seig!' 'Heil!''
'Prime Minister Mr. Bevin announced today in Parliament that emergency paper hankies would be given out to the people of Sussex, Essex and Kent, and a special CryBaby telephone service will shortly begin for them - if the wires haven't frozen, of course.'
'Trains and buses that work perfectly well in Russia and Norway's weather will mysteriously fail to do so in England, likewise schools will close across the country while every school in Russia and Norway carries on as usual. That was the six o'clock news.'
Frazer: 'Aye, thanks to the Sassenach gritters sitting at home we're gonnae be here for some time. We're doomed, I tell ye, doomed!'
Mainwaring: 'Nonsense! We must think of something to get us out of here'
Jones: 'Permission to speak, sir'
Jones 'What if we fix bayonets and charge at the snow, sir?'
Mainwaring: 'That's a good idea, Jones. Fix bayonets, men. [they do so] Right, Frazer, on the count of three open the door and we will charge at the snow. One - two -'
Wilson 'I say, wouldn't it be easier to just make a nice cup of tea, sir, and wait til somebody comes and digs us out?'
Mainwaring: 'Nonsense, Wilson. We will fight the snow now, we will fight it on the beaches, we will fight it in the fields and behind the greengrocers, we will fight it at this door, we will never surrender!'
Pike: 'I will'
Mainwaring: 'One - two - three!' [Frazer opens the door, men charge at the snow which collapses in on them]
[Scene fades to Vera Lynn singing 'There'll be no birds over, the White Cliffs of Dover - as it's snowed in ...']
[scene: church hall the next morning; the snow has all gone]
Mainwaring: 'You see, men, the bulldog spirit has pulled us all through, hasn't it? Walker, go and make some tea, we will be needed outside very soon'
Wilson: 'Why is that, sir?'
Mainwaring: 'Because the minute it thaws in the south of England thousands of pipes start bursting, electricity gets cut off, and whole towns become flooded. We must be ready to help'
Wilson: 'Very good, sir'
[ARP Warden Hodges arrives]
Hodges: 'So you got back safely from Moscow, then?'
Mainwaring: 'My men showed the sort of resource that will win the War against the Huns'
Hodges: 'If you don't have us all killed trying! The snow melted hours ago, Napoleon, you've been sitting in here while I've been enjoying a nice breakfast of bacon and eggs' [winks at Jones]
Mainwaring: 'What! Why didn't you come and tell us?'
Hodges: 'To give you a chance to show that resource you keep going on about!' [leaves, laughing]
Mainwaring: 'Right, men! Fall in. We will now march to the town hall and see if there's anything else we can mess up - I mean help with. A quick ... march! [men leave the hall]
'You have been watching ...
A lot of southern softies bleating on about the weather in what is, after all, one of the most northerly countries in the world
Doesn't the BBC have anything better to do than drone on and on about a little bit of snow, with their reporters all over Britain speaking as if the Luftwaffe are attacking all of its towns and cities again?