A Zoom event in conjunction with English Heritage on the 80th anniversary of the first mission of the Cichociemni, the elite Polish commandos who trained in Britain to lead the resistance against the Germans in occupied Poland.
Cichociemni- The Polish ‘Silent Unseen’ Commandos
English Heritage, an organisation dedicated to the preservation of British cultural heritage, has appealed to descendants of the Cichociemni, the elite Polish commandos who trained in Britain to lead the resistance against the Germans in occupied Poland, to share their family stories or any wartime memories. The appeal has been launched on the 80th anniversary of the first mission of the Cichociemni.
The Cichociemni, or the Silent Unseen, were elite special-operations paratroopers trained in the UK to carry out covert operations, sabotage and intelligence-gathering in occupied Poland. Historians agree that they played a key part in helping the Allies defeat the Germans, including gaining key intelligence ahead of the D-Day landings and providing information on the launch bases of V1 and V2 rockets. Between 1941 and 1945, 316 Cichociemni were dropped into occupied Poland. Most of them completed their training at Audley End House, an early 17th-century country house outside Saffron Walden, Essex, England, one of the finest Jacobean houses in the UK.
Andrew Hann, a historian for English Heritage, which looks after Audley End House, said: “We’d love to hear from the public who have a connection or story to share about the Cichociemni at Audley”
The Polish community have been contacting English Heritage with strories relating to the Cichociemmni and we hope that our event will help to promote greater knowledge those involved who, given that they were highly trained to be both ‘silent and unseen’, they unsurprisingly left little obvious trace.