Churchill's Bunker: The Secret Headquarters at the Heart of Britain's Victory

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Profile Books, 2009 - Great Britain - 246 pages
5 Reviews
'This is the room from which I will direct the war,' Churchill declared, shortly after becoming Prime Minister in 1940. And he did just that, as the distinguished Churchill biographer Richard Holmes explains in the first history of the Cabinet War Rooms. It was from these cramped, uncongenial confines that Churchill turned a seemingly inevitable defeat at the hands of the Nazis into a famous victory. Yet he was not working deep in a distant forest or hidden in a walled-off suburb: he was in the very heart of the capital, within sight of Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament. Built in 1938 as a temporary refuge in case of air raid attack, this secret bunker became a second home to Churchill - and to large numbers of military personnel and civil servants whose work until now has been largely unsung. Here was the Map Room that charted the advances and retreats of armies, the locations of warships and the often painful progress of the convoys that kept the nation supplied. Here the planners worked on future operations and the intelligence staff pondered the enemy's next moves. And all this work was known only to those who needed to know.Drawing on a fascinating range of original material, including new first-hand accounts of the people who lived there, Holmes reveals how and why the bunker and its war machine developed; how the inhabitants' lives were transformed; and how their work led to victory. Elegant and illuminating, Churchill's Bunker is a unique exploration of one of the most important sites in British history.

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Review: Churchill's Bunker: The Secret Headquarters at the Heart of Britain's Victory. Richard Holmes

User Review  - Duncan Irvine - Goodreads

Very enjoyable read. A well covered subject but from a slightly different angle Read full review

Review: Churchill's Bunker

User Review  - Natalia Galan - Goodreads

Not really about the CWR. I was quite disappointed to find out that it was a high level overview of Churchill's role in WWII rather than a book depicting life in the CWR. Read full review


The blast of war
Running the show
Life in the bunker

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About the author (2009)

Professor Richard Holmes was one of Britain's most distinguished historians. He was Professor of Military and Security Studies at Cranfield University and the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom, and he presented seven BBC TV series, including War Walks, The Western Front, Wellington and In the Footsteps of Churchill. He was general editor of the Oxford Companion to Military History, and the author of over twenty books. His trilogy on the British soldier across history, Redcoat, Sahib and Tommy, also attracted wide acclaim and several of his books featured in the UK's non-fiction bestseller list. He was President of the British Commission for Military History. He died on 30th April 2011.

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