The Great Escapers

The Great Escapers

The Full Story of the Second World War's Most Remarkable Mass Escape


The Great Escape was one of the most remarkable episodes of the Second World War. After the attempt to break 200 men out of Hermann Gring's 'escape-proof' prisoner-of-war camp, 76 Allied officers managed to create havoc behind enemy lines before most were eventually recaptured. Now, over 60 years after the event, the ingenuity of the masterminds behind this audacious break-out is celebrated.The Great Escapers tells the story of these men who managed to break free from the supposedly impenetrable barbed wire and watchtowers of Stalag Luft III, Gring's showcase prison camp near Sagan. Some of them were also involved in other daring escape attempts, including the famous Wooden Horse episode, also turned into a classic film, and the little-known Sachsenhausen break-out, engineered by five Great Escape survivors sent to die in the notorious concentration camp on Hitler's personal orders. Also revealed is the important role Stalag Luft III played in Allied intelligence operations within occupied Europe: the prisoners developed an intricate espionage network, feeding details of military deployments and strength levels back home and relaying details about the accuracy of bombing raids. Tragically, 50 of those involved in the Great Escape were murdered by the Gestapo. The author examines their deaths and the post-war investigation to bring their killers to justice. The Great Escapers is an extraordinary story, charted through the experiences of those who lived under the sweeping searchlights of the ominous watchtowers and ending with accounts from the seven remaining men who broke out that March night over 60 years ago - the last of the Great Escapers.

About the author

Tim Carroll

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