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    People's War
    The Secret War in Milton Keynes
    Private Property
    Sign at Wavendon Tower

    If you thought that code breaking at Bletchley Park was the only top secret thing going on around Milton Keynes during the Second World War, then think again! It's the stuff that movies are made of!

    WATCH & LISTEN

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor at Wavendon Tower

     

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor in Aspley Guise

     

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor at Maryland

     

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor at Paris House

     

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor at Windy Ridge

     

    SEE ALSO

    People's War

    View the air raid photo gallery

    View the Churchill Tank photo gallery

    View the Vauxhall factory photo gallery

    D-Day revisited

    "May the fathers long tell the children" - St John Fisher School project

    People's War and D-Day anniversary events

    People's War Roadshow in Bedford

    Tank power

    Memories of a war baby

    War child: giving something back

    Vauxhall to the rescue

    Living with the enemy

    The Glenn Miller mystery

    The secret war in Milton Keynes

    World War Two poetry

    How Bedfordshire fooled the Germans!

    WEB LINKS

    The Secret War in Milton Keynes

    The BBC is not responsible for the content of external websites.

    ESSENTIAL INFO

    The WW2 People's War Website aims to capture and preserve for future generations the personal and family stories of the people who lived and fought in World War Two. This is an opportunity to leave a legacy so that the sacrifices of the war can be better understood.

    The Website enables you to write about World War Two, discuss the stories that you read, reunite with others and research the war generation.

    The WW2 People's War Team rely on you, the online community, to provide authentic stories and constructive feedback.

    get in contact

    With the Blitz raining down on London, some of Britain's top military departments moved to the countryside so they could continue their fight against the Nazis.

    With convenient road and rail networks the countryside of North Buckinghamshire was a perfect place for many of our top secret operations to be located.

    Local historian John Taylor, and BBC Three Counties Radio presenter Toby Friedner visited five different locations in the area, whose true nature were a highly guarded secret.

    Wavendon Tower

    Wavendon Tower

    Wavendon Tower today is now the base for a computer firm

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor at Wavendon Tower

    Codenamed Simpson after nearby Simpson village, Wavendon Tower was the first home of Britain's 'black' propaganda service.

    Anti Nazi radio programmes called Freedom Stations were recorded there, in French, German, Italian & Balkan languages among others.

    Operations at Wavendon Tower came to an end when the unit was moved to Milton Bryan on the Woburn Estate, where a state of the art radio station was built for the job.

    Aspley Guise

    Anchor Pub

    The Anchor Pub in Aspley Guise

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor in Aspley Guise

    Staff working for the many top secret organisations in the area were given temporary homes in villages across North Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire.

    Many of these were French who'd escaped the Nazi invasion, and Germans who'd been taken prisoner or decided to defect.Some stayed in Aspley Guise and although they weren't supposed to mix with the locals, they often ended up down the local pub!

    Maryland

    Maryland College

    Maryland College

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor at Maryland

    For years, Maryland College near Woburn has been used as a teacher training college, but throughout the war it was the centre of allied print operations.

    Fake German newspapers and all the propaganda leaflets dropped on the enemy were designed there.

    When Pearl Harbour was bombed in 1941, the US asked Britain for the expertise they'd built up through Maryland. The British agreed, but only if they could have a destroyer in exchange, the Americans promptly handed over a ship, although to this day, no-one knows which destroyer we got as payment.

    Paris House

    Paris House

    Paris House

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor at Paris House

    Paris House is now an exclusive restaurant in the grounds of Woburn Estate, but had the Germans invaded, it would have been used as a safe house to hide the King and Queen.

    During the war it had a number of important visitors and it's believed there are secret underground passageways beneath it, which would have helped them escape if the Nazis were closing in.

    Windy Ridge

    Gravestone

    The Grave at Whaddon Church, of the Royal Signals Soldier who was electrocuted by one of the transmitters

    audio Listen to Toby Friedner and John Taylor at Windy Ridge

    The fields around the Village of Whaddon were full of massive aerials.

    Nicknamed Windy Ridge, top secret information from Bletchley Park was coded and sent to allied commanders across Europe from their transmitters in Tattenhoe.

    From Whaddon Hall the allies kept in contact with secret agents right across Europe. There were also two transmitters at Potsgrove called Pansy and Poppy, and others at Gawcott, and Calverton.

    Find out more about the Secret War that was fought around Milton Keynes.

    You can find more stories like this and add your own on the People's War Website.

    Listen to World War Two poetry on the Milton Keynes Breakfast Show

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