Accessories For The Resistance
They were Britain’s ‘secret army’, courageous volunteers prepared to sacrifice their lives to fight against a Nazi invasion of the UK.
Issued with top-secret orders, their role has remained unsung for decades. But now the undercover resistance units Churchill planned to activate in the event of a German invasion during the Second World War are at last to be honoured.
The Royal British Legion has agreed to officially recognise the 4,000 volunteers who once formed the secret guerrilla cells created to resist the Nazis. And for the first time, former members are to parade with other veterans at this year’s Remembrance Day ceremonies at the Cenotaph.
If wartime church bells rang to warn of enemy invasion, the orders for the Auxiliary Unit volunteers were to disappear without telling anyone and to report to hidden bases in the countryside.
Each was issued with sealed orders giving a list of potential collaborators, some as senior as county chief constables, who might have to be executed if there was a risk of them helping the Germans.
Most of the volunteers worked in the countryside and were chosen for their knowledge of the local area and ability to use a weapon.
Trained at Coleshill, in Oxfordshire, they operated in tight groups and their role was to disrupt and destroy the enemy’s supply chain, kill collaborators and take out strategic targets. Unable to tell anyone about their activities, they disguised their real mission by pretending to belong to the Home Guard.
Tom Sykes, of the Coleshill Auxiliary Research Team, which has campaigned for the men to be honoured, is delighted by the RBL’s decision. ‘Many of these veterans were in reserved occupations and could not join the regular Forces,’ he said. ‘But when the call came, they did not hesitate to join what would have been a suicide mission to confront the enemy.
‘They were taught cutting-edge guerrilla warfare and even used Thompson sub-machine guns before they were given to the British Army.
‘But they were sworn to secrecy and sadly suffered taunts and were sent white feathers by people who thought they were cowards for not fighting.
‘Thankfully, the invasion never came and many who joined feel they did not contribute. Nothing could be further from the truth, as I’m sure the majority would agree….’
They’re heroes and deserve the thanks of the people of Great Britain…and of America because, if the Nazis had invaded, these brave lads would have helped to bog down the Hun and given us more breathing room to mount our counter-offensives.
Perhaps those of us who are fighting to restore our freedoms and liberties, who are trying to save The American Republic from the ravaging forces of the Left In America, should be doing more research into these Auxilary Units — for historical purposes only, of course.
FYI: Check out the British Resistance Archive.