In the South West the Anglican League have developed in to 3 types of forces. This is because in some areas the Anglican League is in control and in others the League is an underground movement. This makes for a very confused patchwork across the countryside.
First are the parish defence companies. These are local units, whose job is to protect a number of parishes. They are made up of part timers, who’s main job might be farming, shop workers or some other job which means they must stay in their village or town. Their members also act as a police force. They are run by parish defence committees who’s members walk a tight rope between running their villages and not antagonising the local BUF or LDVs. The BUF arrest members on sight. LDVs may beat them up. One very vocal vicar finished up in a dung heap. All villages now have false walls in houses, hidden bunkers and other methods to hide food, arms and people from enemy searches.
Then there are the Anglican League regulars. These follow British army lines and are the main stay of the Anglican league. Platoons are between 20 and 25 men, all have 1 LMG and 1 SMG some now have 2 of each. Companies have 3 platoons and a large HQ which have 1 or 2 HMGs. Battalions each have 3 companies plus a Battalion Headquarters company. Mortars and heavier weapons are grouped in 2 tube/gun batteries under the control of battalion commanders. The regular companies are not all motorised. The regulars are the main fighting force of the Anglican League in the West Country. Some are sent out to back up the parish defence companies.
The mobile nature of some of the fighting has created a 3rd type of unit, the Anglican League call ‘March Columns‘. These mobile units where first sent out to try and open roads between Anglican League controlled areas, but had to fight all the way and where constantly under the threat of ambush.
March Columns follow the same formation as Anglican League regulars, but have more automatic weapons in each platoon.
Each March Column has grown to be a self-contained unit, are mostly motorised but with some mounted elements. Each has a spearhead of armoured cars or armoured lorries. Each platoon has its own lorry, with the HQ having a lorry and two or three cars or vans. A March Column takes as much as they can in the way of supplies, so as not to take too much from the locals. This makes them VERY tempting targets for LDVs and the BUF. In more rural areas there are a lot more cavalry in the March Columns. This helps in moving the coloums across open country and too out flank ambushes, as well as helping to scout for check-points and road blocks.
The soldiers see themselves as the elite of the Anglican League because of dangerous type of mission they go on. As well as keeping the roads open March Columns have to collect tithes and ‘show the flag’.
It was soon felt that the Anglican League had to put something back in to the communities it was trying to control. Now each March Column has a Magistrate or Justice of the Peace (JP) attached. These set up Assize courts, to try cases and bring some law and order back to the countryside. Many pre-civil war Magistrates and JPs sided with the Anglican League so these courts have a lot of legitimacy with people in the countryside as they hark back to the days before the war.
Each March Column also has a doctor (one even has a dentist) these set up clinics and treat the local population. This justice and medicine approach has helped bring in new support.