The Man Who Never Was.....

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BENIDORM
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The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby BENIDORM » Wed Jul 29, 2009 1:52 pm

Some forum members may recall the true story about 'The Man Who Never Was', which is the title of a book and later a film, made about this story..

Basically in May, 1943 a body was placed in the water, from a British submarine, off the Spanish coast, the idea being that it would drift in to the beach and be discovered by the Spanish , who although neutral, were in fact sympathetic to the Nazi cause.
The body was dressed in the clothing of a senior British Officer, and a briefcase was handcuffed to him, containing the plans of a secret plan to invade German held territory.
The elaborate hoax was planned by British intelligence, and actually worked, changing the course of the Second World War.
The body was discovered by a local Spanish fisherman who informed the authorities who in turn brought in the Abwehr ( German Intelligence), they of course checked out the contents of the briefcase and forwarded copies to their HQ in Berlin, who then changed their plans, which benefited the Allies.
The body of the officer was then buried with full military honours in the cemetery in Huelva.
After the war it was reported that the body was actually a Welsh vagrant, who had died from pneumonia, but there was a lot of controversy about this, some saying that the body was actually
a Naval casualty.

So ...sorry to bore you all with this, I'm planning a visit to Huelva and really would like to visit the grave, but what I wanted to know is ..
Has anyone visited the grave in Huelva, and if so could you give me directions to it.?

And can anyone recommend a reasonable hotel in Huelva, preferably with parking ?

Much obliged....Gordon...

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby Enrique » Wed Jul 29, 2009 3:10 pm

Hi Benidorm,
Have you come across this link :?:

http://us.geocities.com/manwhoneverwas/hom090.html


Added:
Think I've located the cemetery.

Its on the road HU-3101 runs north from the Ronda de Norte road.
If you use Google Earth .....locate Huelva then put in Cementerio

What a story, loads of info about :)
Last edited by Enrique on Wed Jul 29, 2009 3:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby Nimrod » Wed Jul 29, 2009 3:18 pm

Can't help with this but I did go and see the film at The Gaumont when it first came out.
Don't make 'em like that anymore!

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby BENIDORM » Wed Jul 29, 2009 4:42 pm

Enrique..Thank you for that link...I'll have to ask Peteroldracer to translate it for me .. :D

....seriously very interesting ...Cheers.

Nimrod,
I also saw it at the 'Gaumont'...But that's really dated me now and blown my 'street-cred'..! :(
Regards,
Gordon..

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby K chameleon » Wed Jul 29, 2009 6:16 pm

Hi Beni,
Great story, or should I say History lesson.
If you scroll down, in Enrique's link, there's a red box " Glyndwr Michael. The True Story (English)"

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby BENIDORM » Wed Jul 29, 2009 6:22 pm

Hello KC..
Thanks for that...I didn't notice that.. :oops: ..However I did manage to read the Spanish version...even though my Spanish is a bit 'iffy... :D

Regards,
Gordon..

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby Ama » Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:00 am

Interesting story :)

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby frog » Thu Jul 30, 2009 1:54 am

great film as well
jayne countys most famous song,google it

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby ValL » Sat Aug 01, 2009 3:16 pm

Benidorm, we were near Huelva this morning and thought we would look this up. I had not taken the directions for inside the graveyard, one of the workers had no trouble taking us to the grave. As an aside The British Cementary there is keep locked and is unkempt, most of the graves I believe are workers/family from the Rio Tinto Mines. You have to make an appointment to get the key. We did not have enough time to it today but will go back one day.

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby Enrique » Sat Aug 01, 2009 3:42 pm

Hi ValL,
Is that the cemetery I gave the location for or is it in another location. :?:
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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby ValL » Sat Aug 01, 2009 3:51 pm

The grave of William Martin is in the Cementerio Nuestra Señora de la Soledad, as it says in the link you posted yes. Thank you.

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby BENIDORM » Sun Aug 02, 2009 7:51 am

Hello Vail,
Thank you very much for that information,and I hope that you found the visit interesting..

Did you, by chance, notice any other British War Graves near this one ?

I've always found this story intriguing, and I was given, many years ago, an account of the story by a former crew member of the submarine involved with this incident, it was quite different to the published story...very involved...

I have a huge list of things to do and see, and hope to visit Huelva later this year..So anymore help with hotels etc would be appreciated, and of course any other worthwhile sites to visit.

I wonder how many other members of the forum have do and see lists ?

I told a friend recently that I have a big list of ' do and see' things to achieve before I'm 92, and she asked me if that was the aged that I thought I would live to...I replied... No,.. 92 was the age when I was thinking of retiring...part-time... :D

Enrique ..thank you for your input...much appreciated....

Regards,
Gordon....And I really must get on now....A lot to do and see.... :wink:

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby ValL » Sun Aug 02, 2009 8:22 am

Morning Benidorm, not sure they count it as a war grave but I know what you mean. The man who directed us ( I had missed it due to a group cleaning the family grave and I did not want to intrude) said there was one other foreign grave of a avaitor a french pilot. Don saw it I think. He did not mention any others sorry. I would have taken some photos but it was very busy and I did not want to offend anyone. I have always liked cementeries ever since doing rubbings for a guide badge way back when .....


My to do and see list is everything ! well nearly nothing that involves jumping off tall things nor water although I do like to sail.

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby BENIDORM » Sun Aug 02, 2009 8:37 am

Vail, And Good Morning to you to,

That's most helpful , thank you..and I'll see that you are recommended to receive the ' Girl Guide 'Grave Watch Merit Badge'...for your efforts... :D

If you visit any other interesting or unusual places in your area, please 'write them up', I'm sure there are plenty of people who would be interested..

I hope that you and Don have a very pleasant and restful Sunday...

Regards,
Gordon..

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby sundodger » Fri Jul 09, 2010 8:49 pm

For your infomation about the man who never was: Ben Macintyre wrote a book called "Operation Mincemeat" the true story about actually what happened and the main players and thanks to two german spies operating in Spain at the time the operation was a resounding success :clap:

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby BENIDORM » Thu Jul 22, 2010 7:56 pm

I've justed watched a 'report' on the 'One Show' about the origins of the man whose body was used in 'Operation Mincemeat', apparently he was a Welsh vagrant who died in London.

Without ever knowing it he made a massive contribution to the war effort and undoubtedly saved many lives, and now he is buried 100's of miles away in Spain...Quite sad really..I think...

Surprisingly no-one on the 'One Show' made any reference to the original film made about this important event.... :(
I find this type of true story really interesting...anyone know of any other good yarns..preferably true ?

Regards,
Gordon

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby .Griff. » Fri Dec 03, 2010 3:54 pm

Just to let you know there's a programme about this on BBC2 on Sunday.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00wllmb

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby BENIDORM » Fri Dec 03, 2010 5:47 pm

Griff....
Many thanks for bringing that to our attention, looks interesting...must remember to watch it...
Regards,
Gordon..

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby Tartan Bar » Sat Dec 04, 2010 9:02 pm

Hi Ben and others who are interested

The tale of the Wooden Horse escape from Stalag Luft III in 1942/3 is, infact a true story. My father was the senior officer in charge of room 8 Block 62 where Eric Williams, Michael Codner and later Oliver Philpot planned and started the whole plan. I believe it was the first totally successful escape from a German PoW camp by all the escapees.
Unfortunately my father was killed in a flying accident in 1952, The day before my 3rd birthday so all the information I have I have received from people who replied to an advertisement I placed in the RAFA magazine in 1984. I have put together a document detailing all I have been able to discover and it includes a letter from one of the 8 occupants of the room.
If you are interested please PM me and I will attempt to send you a copy but it is quite large.
In passing I have had to leave Spain following the breakdown of my marriage in January and in Feb I was diagnosed wiyh oesophageal cancer so have spen 4 months in hospital in Inverness this year.
For those commenting on the weather it has been -18degrees with 3 foot of snow. Chilly compared to Andalusia
regards
Ian

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Re: The Man Who Never Was.....

Postby Enrique » Sun Dec 05, 2010 12:42 pm

Hi,
A further reminder it's on tonight.......................

http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/tv/2010/12/o ... meat.shtml
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