News - Outbreak of War with Germany

On 1 September 1939, the British ambassador in Berlin issued an ultimatum to the German government urging it to cease all aggressive activities in Poland and withdraw. Two days later, at 10.00am, this special announcement confirmed that His Majesty's government was still awaiting an official response to that ultimatum, which was due to expire at 11.00am. At this point, the listeners would have been very well aware that they were just one hour away from a declaration of war. The presenter of this broadcast was Alvar Lidell, who had also announced the abdication of King Edward VIII in 1936.

Originally broadcast 3 September 1939.

Britain declares war on Germany
World War Two - Outbreak, 1939
War and conflict