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Requisitioned: The British Country House in the Second World War

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Overview

This book profiles 20 country houses and their fate during WW2, from schools (Chatsworth) to hospitals to barracks (Eaton Hall) to storing the National Art Collection (Penrhyn Castle). Wide geographical spread, including Scotland (where the SOE trained in West Coast castles like Rosneath) and Wales. Some houses have since been restored to former glory, like Arundel, some are famous only as a result of their wartime role - Bletchley Park - and others have been destroyed for ever....

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Overview

This book profiles 20 country houses and their fate during WW2, from schools (Chatsworth) to hospitals to barracks (Eaton Hall) to storing the National Art Collection (Penrhyn Castle). Wide geographical spread, including Scotland (where the SOE trained in West Coast castles like Rosneath) and Wales. Some houses have since been restored to former glory, like Arundel, some are famous only as a result of their wartime role - Bletchley Park - and others have been destroyed for ever.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781781310953
  • Publisher: Aurum Press
  • Publication date: 5/6/2014
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 322,283
  • Product dimensions: 8.60 (w) x 11.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

John Martin Robinson is a British architectural historian and officer of arms. Robinson is also a Knight of Magistral Grace of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta. He lives at Beckside House, Cumbria. Robinson is an active member of the Georgian Group.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2014

    Wonderful look at a WWII background story

    John Martin Robinson has written a fascinating chronicle of the fate of many great houses in England during World War II. The author has done extensive research on the role played by twenty houses, some famous, others obscure. Beginning in the late 1930s, the Ministry of Defense began requisitioning these stately homes and their grounds for a variety of purposes: military command, code-breaking center such as Bletchley Park, as seen on the recent PBS series "Bletchley Circle", as well as for barracks, hospitals, evacuated schools, HQ for MI5, and even a refuge for Queen Mary. I was struck by the contrast between the depiction of requisitioning as shown, on "Downton Abbey," in which part of the house was used as a hospital for injured soldiers in WWI, and the reality of the real cost to the owners of the estates both financially and physically, in that little money was paid for their use while often resulting in severe damage to the buildings and their furnishings. Here is a book for WWII history buffs and lovers of English country houses, filled with hundreds of archival photos, and an expertly written narrative between its 208 pages.

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