Train­ing Days

BBC History Magazine - - Tv & Radio -

Churchill’s Se­cret Agents: The New Re­cruits TV BBC Two Air­ing now – also on BBC iPlayer

The job of the Spe­cial Op­er­a­tions Ex­ec­u­tive (SOE) dur­ing the Sec­ond World War was de­cep­tively straight­for­ward: to un­der­take es­pi­onage, sab­o­tage and re­con­nais­sance in oc­cu­pied Europe. This was fear­fully dan­ger­ous work and those sent be­hind enemy lines had to un­der­take rig­or­ous train­ing.

Just how rig­or­ous is ex­plored in a fivepart se­ries du­pli­cat­ing the in­struc­tion given out in the 1940s. The se­ries begins with a group of mod­ern hope­fuls un­der­go­ing a se­ries of phys­i­cal and men­tal tests to de­ter­mine if they can progress to full train­ing.

A new se­ries puts modern re­cruits through the rigours of SOE train­ing

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