January 2022

Henley Probus Club: January 2022 Photo copyright Nigel (Gin) Balchin

The 469th meeting was held at Badgemore Park on 11th January 2022.

The Chairman opened the meeting by welcoming members and then outlined the current thinking for events and guest speakers for 2022 based on the questionnaire sent to members at the end of 2021.  The Chairman thanked the members for their response and advised that a plan would now be put in place covering both activities.

The guest speaker was Phil Mullins who gave a talk on OSS Station Victor.

Phil, who was an ex British Army and police detective, had researched the details of OSS Station Victor almost entirely in the USA and in particular the CIA archives in Langley, USA.

The OSS had maintained meticulous and secret records in their archive until they began to be progressively released at the start of the 21st century.  The OSS, predecessor of the CIA, had requisitioned a number of properties and land in and around Hurley in the period 1943-1945 to conduct various highly secret intelligence activities.

Transmitting and Receiving radio stations were set up in strategic positions outside Hurley while in the village itself The Olde Bell and Hurley Manor House were requisitioned for messing and other ‘management activities’ including a meeting venue for the US President (Eisenhower) and the UK PM (Churchill) who each had their own air raid shelters in the village.

The members thanked Phil for his presentation and the incredible research work he had undertaken to unveil the story of the top-secret activities that had been undertaken in and around the village of Hurley.