Charley says: here’s how to survive a nuclear war with ‘Protect and Survive’

Although most of the public information films of the 1970s were largely concerned with everyday dangers, such as rabies, water, fridges and electricity sub-stations, there was one every-present concern that trumped all of these: the end of the world. The end of the world and general apocalypse was something that dominated the thinking of people in everyday life and in movies and TV – look at the popularity of Soylent Green, The Omega Man, Logan’s Run, Survivors, et al. Why? Because the world really did seem doomed, thanks to the Cold War and nuclear weapons.

Here in the UK, if the USSR had launched nuclear weapons at us, we’d have had precisely four minutes’ notice before the warheads exploded over our cities. Warnings would have sounded and we’d have had just those few short minutes to prepare ourselves for the end of civilisation as we knew it – assuming we survived, of course.

Fortunately, there was a public information booklet, radio series and accompanying films to explain how we could maximise our chances of survival in the event of Armageddon. The infamous Protect and Survive incorporated all manner of useful information for British citizens, such as how to dismantle doors to create a make-shift fallout shelter. Assuming, of course, you didn’t have a ‘fallout room’ in your house.

Watch these films to learn more on how to protect yourself in the event of the prospective annihilation of the human race, including how to build a fallout room, what to put in it and what to do with casualties and the dead after the attack. Remember – never keep a dead body in the house for more than five days.