Estonian Defence League School

The Defence League School has been operating since 2001. The school has been located in Alu Manor in Rapla County since 2002 and the Danish Home Guard has played an important role in its construction. The school is primarily focused on providing leadership and instructor training to volunteers and professionals. The Defence League School is a non-formal educational institution. This means that you can attend the school to improve yourself and learn new things, but it does not issue formal credentials, such as secondary or higher education diplomas.

The Defence League School has two fields of study: military leadership and personnel development.

Photo: Mehis Oidsalu

Photo: Kaitseliidu kool

The military leadership courses range from section commanders to staff officers.

It differs from similar courses provided by the Defence Forces in that the training is focused on territorial defence and the dispersed combat actions conducted as part of its framework.

The personnel development courses support the individual development of all Defence League volunteers by providing general leadership skills and preparation for instructing others. In addition, they help develop attitudes and spread a uniform organisational culture.

In addition to the fields of study offered, the Defence League School also includes a research and development department that focuses on gathering training-related information, releasing educational materials and supporting development projects in the Defence League.

Photo: Taive Saar


The Defence League School’s mission is to provide comprehensive and high-quality leadership and instructor training for the Defence League to ensure the existence of skilled resistance and the preservation of the Estonian state in case of war.


By 2025 and onward, the Defence League School will be providing the world’s best training in military and non-military know-how for dispersed combat activity leaders and instructors.


Every school has to be in the forefront of modern solutions and techniques. This necessitates the testing and further development of various tools. This all requires money. Rather conservative budget constraints, however, make it impossible to achieve everything necessary for improvement with state funding alone.


If you feel that a better improvement of the Defence League through modern instruments and approaches is important, then you are welcome to contribute. We welcome any donated sum. We guarantee that all donated euros will be used optimally. Donations can be sent to:

Reference number: 62020100180
Explanation: Support for the Defence League School

or by entering the Defence League’s online store and selecting the Defence League School from the drop-down menu.



Alu Manor (Allo in German) was first mentioned in 1409. The manor was probably already built from stone in the middle ages. In the 17th century, the manor belonged to the von Uexküll and von Wrangell families. It changed owners several times after the Great Northern War, having belonged to the von Rosen, von Bistram and von Tiesenhausen families.

In 1858, Alu Manor was acquired by Otto von Lilienfeld, owner of the neighbouring Sikeldi Manor. He tore down the older buildings with their archaic basements and started building a new main building.

Construction began in 1862 under Paul Friedrich Wilhelm Alish, architect of the Kreenholm Manufacturing Company in Narva. However, the building was completed in 1875 according to Friedrich Modi’s project.

This resulted in the completion of one of the most unique neogothic manor buildings in Estonia. Its massive cubic form, five-storey corner tower and fluted parapet were influenced by medieval castle architecture.

The manor building, confiscated from Rudolf von Lilienfeld in 1919, housed a school from 1920 to 1930. After the Second World War, it was in the possession of the Estonian Agricultural Technology Concern. In 1999, the building was acquired by the Defence League, which used it to house the newly-created educational centre. Because of this, the manor building was renovated in the early 2000s.

There is a picturesque park with a pond near the main building. Few auxiliary buildings remain, the most remarkable being the neogothic granary. In the second half of the 20th century, several new buildings were erected in the manor’s centre and its surroundings, resulting in the emergence of a significant rural settlement.
Historically, the manor belonged to Harju County’s Rapla Parish, but today it is situated in Rapla County’s Rapla Parish.

The text and pictures are from the “Estonian Manors” web portal. More information can be found HERE.

More pictures of the manor renovation and Estonian Defence League School can be found HERE.