Tribute to unsung war heroes in book

Bob Looker, from Hastings with his new book 'Three Days'
Bob Looker, from Hastings with his new book 'Three Days'

AN AUTHOR’S first novel is a tribute to the bravery of the British resistance movement during the Second World War and references two of his family members.

Bob Looker, 66, of Highland Mews, St Leonards, was conducting research for a series of stories about 18th century smugglers in the South Downs when he came across a book on the Sussex Resistance.

It was this that inspired his self-published novel Three Days, which he has spent several years writing.

Bob, who grew up in Jevington before joining the Royal Sussex Regiment, and served 23 years in the army, said: “When I read this book I discovered that two of my uncles were members, and this was confirmed by one of their sons.

“This story, the first of three about the auxiliary forces, is in tribute to my Uncles and their bravery in undertaking such a role, during the war,

“For the first time the auxiliary forces are being recognised; they have been invited to the remembrance parade in London this year.”

One of Bob’s uncles had been an agricultural engineer, another, a farm labourer. These men had been among those who were not called up to join the armed forces, but were nonetheless supporting the war effort.

“The book refers to things that did go on in the war, but the actual story itself is an imagination,” Bob said.

“There are characters in the book that are based on my uncles.”

Three Days follows on from the real life parachute landing, in Kent, of German saboteurs, sent to England, in preparation for an invasion (Operation Sealion).

The novel tells of a second landing of German saboteurs, but this time they were landed, from a captured English fishing boat, in the estuary of the River Cuckmere, in the early hours of September 13, 1940.

The plan was that they could disperse, into the country side, before anyone knew that they had landed. From their hiding places, when the time came, they could aid the German troops by either destroying targets, or capturing vital resources.

Had it not been for Jack Fintch, an agricultural mechanic, who was repairing a binder, in a field overlooking the estuary, they may have got away with it.

Jack was a member of a local top secret Auxiliary Forces Unit, and his report set off the three days of events that changed the course of the Second World War.

Three Days is now available to by from Amazon, and this weekend only is free to download for Kindle users.