Ian Fleming’s niece to lead Churchill’s Secret Army march at the Cenotaph
Lucy Fleming, daughter of Peter Fleming who was one of the founding members of the Auxiliary Units, will lead the Remembrance Sunday march
The Auxiliary Units were groups of civilian volunteers that would have formed the British Resistance had the German’s invaded during WWII. Made up of those unable to be called up due to age or war work restrictions, each had a deep knowledge of their local countryside and were often farmers, farm workers, poachers or gamekeepers.
In the event of an invasion each patrol would have disappeared to their Operational Bases (OBs) buried underground and located the length of the British Isles. They would not have told relatives or close friends as they all signed the Official Secrets Act, and would have appeared mainly at night to disrupt the enemy supply chain, destroy transport, ‘deal’ with collaborators and generally try and buy enough time for the regular forces to regroup and counter-attack. It was essentially a suicide mission with each patrol member having a life expectancy of just around two weeks.
Peter Fleming was brought in by Colonel Gubbins who was asked by Churchill to set up the first organised resistance force in Europe. Fleming helped to build some of the first OBs in the country, often in genius guises such as enlarged badger sets (find out more about the first days of the Auxiliary Units here: http://www.coleshillhouse.com/
Tom Sykes, founder of the British Resistance Archive said. “To have a member of the Fleming family leading the veterans and relatives of the Auxiliary Units is something very special indeed as Peter was so integral in establishing the patrols throughout the country.
“Last year’s march was incredibly important for us as it was the first time that veterans and relatives of the Auxiliary Units had marched. Although they have never been officially recognised by the Government, it represented a chance for the public to finally recognise the bravery of these civilian volunteers. To be accepted for a second year is fantastic and to have Lucy leading will, I know, be a great honour for all those involved.”
Lucy Fleming is an actress and also helps to run Ian Fleming Publications. Her father was a renowned author and explorer who was head of D (Deception) Division later in the war. Lucy says: “It is a huge honour to be leading this group of remarkable veterans and relatives. Had the worst happened in the uncertain days of 1940 these men and women would have put everything at risk to protect their country, which is a commitment that should never be forgotten.”
To hear more about the Auxiliary Units or the Cenotaph march please do not hesitate to contact Andy Chatterton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are a former Auxiliary Units member or relative who wishes to march please contact email@example.com
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About CART & The British Resistance Archive.
The Coleshill Auxiliary Research Team (CART) publishes its findings on the British Resistance Archive (BRA) website.
CART also provides an internal network for serious and dedicated researchers who focus on the British Resistance and agree with CART's core value of making the research public.
CART is made up of select volunteer historians and published writers known as County Information Officers (CIOS) and also public members.
CART is not a business or an academic body of professional researchers.
CART is non-profit making and has no financial support from any company or organisation. It is funded solely by donations and the revenue it makes from the sale of various items sold in the shop.
Since CART's birth in June 2009 the website has seen over 110,000 unique visitors and has attracted TV, Radio and national press attention.
For further information about CART please go to this page http://www.coleshillhouse.com/
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