View Full Version : Top secret D-Day plans found hidden under hotel's floorboards

10th February 2015, 19:59
Yellowing documents marked 'On His Majesty's Secret Service', were
found during refurbishments of The Balmer Lawn Hotel in Brockenhurst

Secret documents relating to the D-Day landings have been found under the floorboards at
the Balmer Lawn Hotel

Top secret documents giving orders for the D-Day landings have been found under hotel floorboards after being discarded by Army chiefs seventy years ago.

The Balmer Lawn Hotel in Brockenhurst, Hants, was used as an army staff college during WWII and was involved in the planning of the Normandy invasion.

Half a bin bag's worth of typed documents and envelopes, some marked "On His Majesty's Secret Service", were found during refurbishments of the luxury four-star hotel.

Most are thought to relate to the Canadian military who were based at Balmer Lawn during the war.

Hotel owner Chris Wilson said: "We've found spent ammunition under floorboards before, but never this quantity of documents. It ties the hotel to its history.

"They are quite detailed and specific orders to be followed by troops on the ground."

The hotel caught fire in the 1970s, but miraculously the documents survived the huge blaze. One refers to 'D-Day 1' 7 July 1944 and mentioned difficulties in setting up a 10-mile telephone cable as troops advanced into France.

The Balmer Lawn Hotel as it looked during the Second World War

A hotel spokesman said: "We are still in the process of evaluating the papers but some seem to include code on while others are more to do with the day-to-day organisation of the soldiers. One includes an invite to all personnel to attend a musical variety show.

"Perhaps of most interest are the documents that refer to the D-Day landings.

"One document refers to D-Day1 - June 7 1944 - and mentions difficulties in setting up a ten-mile telephone cable as troops continued advancing into northern France."

The documents were dusty, dirty and in bad shape but still readable.

Chris added: "They're in a delicate condition and unscrunching them will have to be done very carefully. After that I imagine we'll put them on display."

The hotel's military history pre-dates WWII. It was built as a private house and hunting lodge in 1800 and extended in 1850.

During the WWI it was used as a field hospital, with injured soldiers being wheeled there on luggage trolleys from Brockenhurst station.

During the 1940s conflict it transformed into an army staff college. Some of the orders for the D-Day invasion were issued from the hotel ahead of the landings on June 6 1944.

Famous people who visited the hotel during the two wars included King George V, Winston Churchill and General Eisenhower.

Source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/11401966/Top-secret-D-Day-plans-found-hidden-under-hotels-floorboards.html


10th February 2015, 20:29
What a find . . . except we can bet if there's anything really interesting in the papers we'll never get to read about it - not for 150 years anyway . . . .