Sixty years ago exactly, a small and necessarily secretive group of young British radicals made headlines around the world. Their anonymous self-published pamphlet Danger! Official Secret revealed the government's top secret plans for governing the country in the event of nuclear war. And they exposed the location of one of these civil defence underground bunkers, Regional Seat of Government-6 in the Berkshire village of Warren Row.
The activists took the name the Spies for Peace. They helped organise an informal diversion of the Easter Aldermaston peace march which led to hundreds of protesters surrounding the entrance to RSG-6. And although the authorities didn't realsie this at the time, the Spies for Peace had already managed to break in to the underground bunker - twice! - and copy documents and maps.
Nic Ralph was one of the Spies for Peace, and is the only surviving member of the small group that broke in to RSG-6. After sixty years, he has decided to break his silence and for the first time tell his story of one of the most dramatic, and courageous, episodes in the history of Britain's peace movement.
Nic spoke to me and my colleague Marybeth Hamilton for a History Workshop podcast - the oral historian Sam Carroll, who has conducted landmark research on the Spies for Peace, was also part of the conversation.
Here's the link to the podcast - do give it a listen!
And the host page for the podcast is here.
Andrew Whitehead's blog
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