Atkins, Vera May (Oral history)

Catalogue number
  • 9551
Production date
Subject period
  • whole: Duration 80, Number Of Items 3
Alternative names
  • object name: Oral history
  • object category: IWM interview


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Object description

British officer served with F Section, Special Operations Executive at Headquarters, Baker Street, London, GB, 1941-1945

Content description

REEL 1 Background in Galatz, Romania, France, Switzerland and GB, 1908-1939: family; education in France and Switzerland. Aspects of period as civilian in Winchelsea, GB, 1939-1941: reaction to declaration of Second World War, 3/9/1939; problem of sandbagging local post office; reaction to arrival of evacuees from East London. Recollections of period as officer with F Section, Special Operations Executive at Headquarters, Baker Street, London, GB, 1941-1945: recruitment to Special Operations Executive, 1941; personnel at headquarters; death of agents awaiting despatch during German air attack on London; promotion and posting to Norgeby House; code letters used by officers; knowledge of Leslie Humphreys; early organisation of headquarters and recruitment of agents; daily routine. REEL 2 Continues: pattern of training for recruits; qualities looked for in recruits and losses; opinion of Odette Sansom; opinion of Harry Ree; sending coded messages to expectant fathers in the field; memories of Major Roger Landes; background to recruitment of female agents; opinion of Maurice Buckmaster; intensity of work including duties, hours worked and night work. REEL 3 Continues: contact with next-of-kin; documentation of section’s actions; destruction of records; question of security; question of reactions of agents’ relatives; reaction to outgoing and returning agents; attempts to ascertain fates of agents during war crime trials in Germany, from 1/1946; physical condition of returning agents; nature of work in Paris, France, 1944-1945.

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