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Churchill’s Secret Hampshire Army Encouraged To Resurface After Years Of Silence
Historians in Hampshire are looking for members of Churchill's Secret Army - The Auxiliary Units to come forward and reveal more about their wartime role.
They were given intensive training in guerrilla warfare and were to attack enemy supplies and reserve troops in Hampshire once the invasion of Britain was under way. They were all willing to leave their families, and give their lives in order to defend their country. The average life expectancy of an Auxilier was predicted to have been two weeks after going into action. Many veterans never even told their closest family members what they had been trained to do, so seriously did they take their signing of the Official Secrets Act.
Steve Mason, Hampshire’s voluntary researcher for the Coleshill Auxiliary Research Team (CART), is trying to learn more about these brave men. “For over 70 years these men have been silent. Knowing very well that their mission was almost certainly suicidal, this group of brave volunteers should be publicly recognised for their commitment and service to the country,”
CART is keen for veterans to end their silence and get in touch so that future generations can learn more about their training and their mission. “Many Auxiliers are either unaware that they are now allowed to talk about their experiences or believe that no one is interested – nothing could be further from the truth. It would be a tragedy if information about this remarkable group of men & women disappears as their generation’s influence inevitably fades with time. CART is determined to ensure that this does not happen and that those remaining members of the Auxiliary Units gain the recognition they so richly deserve.”
CART’s East Hampshire researcher is also keen for those interested in the Auxiliary Units or that have knowledge about them, and especially the location of the unit’s underground operations bases (OBs), in the Petersfield area to get in touch. We are already researching units in Horndean, Lovedean, Hambledon, Clanfield, Buriton and Langrish, and would be delighted to hear of any information about these or other units in East Hampshire.
“Our aim is for CART to provide a library of information about all aspects of the Auxiliary Units and we need volunteers to pull this information from surviving Unit members and other scattered pieces of information from around the country.”
All the research is published on the group’s website www.coleshillhouse.com If you can help with any information please email carthampshire@
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The Coleshill Auxiliary Research Team (CART) is a national non-profit making organisation run by volunteers. It was set up in June 2009 by Tom Sykes after he was informed about Coleshill and its wartime involvement. The aim of CART is to research, document and preserve the important history of the Auxiliary Units. CART has secured the support of Swindon Conservative MP, Justin Tomlinson.
Since June 2009 CART’s website (www.coleshillhouse.com)
For further information about the Auxiliary Units and how you can help CART please go to the website, call 0872 045 9940 or email carthampshire@
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CART is non profit making and has no financial support from any company.
Since CART's birth in June 2009 the website has seen over 20,000 unique visitors and has attracted TV, Radio and national press attention and the group has many expert members.