Secret Broadcasting Station Code Name "MB"


M.B. by P. W.

The layout of the ground floor of the main MB block was, so far as I remember it, as follows. At the front, to the right of the entrance, was the telephone switchboard, followed by some small offices and, at the corner, a somewhat larger room which was the home of the music section

To the left of the entrance were two or three interconecting rooms which housed editors, writers, announcers and at the end, the hellschreiber installation. Roughly oposite the entrance one passed from the corridor through a door into an oblong area with access on left to the DJ's record rack. In the middle one walked through to the central operations room, passing the door to the DJ's cubicle on ones left. The relative position of the announcers cabin has already been described. On the right of the central op's room, but not reached through it, was a recording studio, where any disk cutting (speech or music) was usually done by the cheerful and popular Sgt Bates, who also attended to a variety of electrical and other technical jobs and repairs around the building, but whose base was upstairs.

Delmers office, with his secretary's ajoining, was at the right rear corner of the building. Stevens and I think Child, also had their offices in the right hand section of the block. Halliday was I think somewhere at the back. The rest of the intelligence/infomation staff, together with their voluminious documentation, were accommodated in the huts opposite the entrance to the main building and in a smaller hut like extension at the left rear of that building.

As to the rest of the compound, entry at the gate was controlled by the MB Police, This was a small, normally unarmed uniformed force under the command of the friendly and efficient Sergeant Copperwheat their main job was to control entry ( not by means of passes, but by familiarity with the appearance with staff members) and to guard the perimeter.Their other duties included the daily collection of the waste paper "tuck box's and the secure destruction of their contents. Sgt Copperwheat also officiated at Christmas "concerts" in the canteen, at one he memorably introduced an item with "and now Miss Woodley will oblige with one fine day by Madame Butterfly".

After passing the guard house on the right the road inside the compound curved right to a point in the direction of the main block. A paved path off on the right led to the canteen. The food here was fairly awful( except for some three months in the summer of 1944, when a different manageress showed what could be achieved by the skillful and imaginative use of wartime rations. Delmer once comented on the canteen food "When it's toad- in- the- hole even Father won't say grace - a reference to Father Eisenberger, a noted gourmand not over concerned with quality.


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