Jack Wentworth Ansell, Royal Corps of Signals, PoW, Kalamata.
Jack was featured on the recent BBC VE Day programme where he was one of three WW2 veterans who gave lengthy interviews. He talked about his time as a PoW and about a book of poems by British Prisoners of War in Austria which he had put together, having found a typewriter which the Germans left behind when they left the camp on 8 May 1945 and the prisoners took control. “Whilst waiting, with several thousand other former British prisoners of war to be repatriated to the United Kingdom, I set up shop with my typewriter. Men came to me with these poems written on scraps of paper for me to type out”. In 2002 Jack gave the original carbon copies to the Imperial War Museum who now hold it as a printed document in their Printed Books Department. Jack’s interview was actually recorded in July 2019 as part of 3945portraits.com. Sadly Jack died in January 2020 and so was not able to see the VE Day programme himself.
We have added two more SOE agents to our website (see section titled SOE in Greece).
Michael Ward SOE agent who endured a 500 mile trek in occupied Greece while gathering information on the enemy and divided partisans. (copyright The Times – taken from obituary column 11th April 2011).
Ronald Adolphus Haggar British NCO who served as wireless operator with Special Operations Executive in Palestine and Lebanon, 1941-1942; served aboard The Armadillo, No 14, Levant Fishing Patrol, Force 133 and Special Operations Executive in Aegean Sea, 1943-1944 (notes taken from Imperial War Museum Sound Archive interview).
We hope you enjoy finding out about these two extraordinary individuals.
We were very sorry to hear the sad news that “Dai” Davies has passed away at the age of 101. We will publish our tribute in due course. In the meantime please click on the link below to the Daily Mail article.
We are pleased to recommend a fascinating new book involving the SOE in Greece: The Extraordinary Life of Mike Cumberlege SOE by Robin Knight. This is the first ever biography about Lt Cdr Mike Cumberlege DSO & Bar, Greek Medal of Honour, who was murdered in Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp some time between February – March 1945. Mike Cumberlege served on the staff of General de Gaulle in London and in a number of undercover roles in Crete and Greece, before being captured during a second attempt to block the Corinth Canal in 1943. Robin Knight has gathered together unique material from Cumberlege’s family and others, to tell the story of Cumberlege’s life. Containing a good selection of photographs, our own archivist Noah Scott is credited with a contribution, along with many others. 163 pages. Hardback published by Fonthill Media LLC.
We have added a new section on ‘SOE in Greece’ to our website. Drawing from a range of sources (which we reference), we have put together a few pages describing the exploits and endeavours of SOE agents who were active in Greece during the Second World War.
Alan Ogden’s book “Sons of Odysseus – SOE Heroes in Greece” published in 2012 by Bene Factum Publishing Limited is the best book to date on the SOE in Greece. Ogden describes the history of SOE in Greece as “controversial and convoluted” and he notes that no official history exists. We hope you enjoy reading about these extraordinary – and invariably maverick – individuals.
John Rose, a long standing member of the Brotherhood, sadly passed away aged 95 on Tuesday, 4th July. His funeral took place in Crawley last week. If you knew John and wish to contribute in some way, donations are being made to St Catherine’s Hospice, Crawley, via Martins Funeral Directors, 38-40 Broadfield Place, Crawley RH11 9BA. To read his story please click on this link http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/ww2peopleswar/stories/00/a5676500.shtml