Haworth Home Guard drill sergeant Peter Whitaker was sent on a surprise mission when he was called to instil some military discipline into the stars of a new reality TV series.

The 61-year-old will appear alongside five of his colleagues from the wartime re-enactment society as part of the new BBC series Turn Back Time: The Family, in which families experience what life was like for their ancestors in bygone times.

They were contacted by the production company behind the prime-time programme to provide authentic Home Guard training for three of the dads of the families taking part.

The programme, which covers the 1940s period, will see the Home Guard members putting the fathers of the families through their paces by teaching them to march and handle original Enfield rifles. The programme will be aired in the next two weeks.

Mr Whitaker, of Cross Hills near Keighley, said: “The three men who are the fathers of the families had to join the Home Guard. The producers said to us not to say anything beforehand, so they didn’t know what was going on.

“Luckily, one of the family members has actually seen some service in the Royal Air Force, so he could march, but there was another chap who couldn’t do it to save his life! He got it in the end but he was just hysterical with laughter.”

Filming took place over Easter when Mr Whitaker, and his Haworth Home Guard colleagues Partrick Hargreaves, Jeff Walbank, Gordon Hutchinson, Peter Wedel and Peter Carlisle visited Morecambe, Lancashire.

The Meadow, The Taylor and The Golding family to take up residence in council owned properties for five weeks to live through five eras from the 1900s.

Mr Whitaker, of Baxter Wood, said the living history group had been contacted by production company Wall to Wall after they tracked down the Haworth Home Guard via its website.

He said: “It is nice to be recognised as being top of the league for Home Guard living history groups in the country.”