The untold tales of Ellon’s ‘secret’ units

A model Operational Bunker. COPYRIGHT STAYBEHINDS.COM
A model Operational Bunker. COPYRIGHT STAYBEHINDS.COM

Researchers are trying to build up a picture of secret wartime auxiliary units based in the Ellon area.

They have limited details on the British Resistance Organisation patrols in Formartine during World War 1.

The Coleshill Auxiliary Research Team (CART), the group behind the British Resistance Archive, want to hear from people in and around Ellon to establish if there any remaining veterans, or relatives who could provide information.

The units were formed by highly trained volunteers who were either too old or too young to be called up, or in reserved occupations.

They were chosen because of their intimate knowledge of their surrounding areas and were often farmers, gamekeepers or poachers.

In an invasion they were to go directly to their operational bases hidden underground in the countryside, without letting anyone know where they were going or their mission - not even close family and friends.

CART’s Aberdeenshire county information officer, Alan Stewart, said the local units that have been identified are in Ellon, Newburgh, Ardallie, Rora and Peterhead.

He said: “I have contacted several people whose fathers were in auxiliary units in the Ellon area, one of which was a resident in Newburgh who had no idea his father was in a unit.

“Another’s father was an officer in the Ellon patrol who recalls a great amount of details as an eight-year-old

“Basically, I’m looking for any information people may have on this very secret organisation, to date I have located the area of two operational bases, one located just outside Ellon in woodland, the other in Ellon itself.”

If you can help, email or call 0872 0459 940.

You can also get in touch with the Times if you have any wartime stories - the contact details are on page 2.