Thursday, 8 December 2016

The remarkable Madge Addy from Chorlton part 2 discovering more

Now yesterday I began the story of Madge Addy f from Chorlton who served in the Spanish Civil War, went on to be an undercover operator in wartime France and was awarded the OBE.*

British nurses on the front line in Spain, date unknown
It is a remarkable story of courage and indeed of modesty because despite facing some very dangerous situations in both Span and France she does not seem to have sought publicity.

To date I can find no obituary from a leading newspaper on her exploits and have uncovered just one photograph.

Aid for the Basque Heroes, circa 1936-39
There will be more.

In the space of a day I found where she was living in 1911 aged seven, a detailed description of role with Special Operations Executive from 1940 and a growing number of the letters she sent back from Spain to raise funds for the Republican cause.

But lots still remain very shadowy.

One newspaper reported that she had been working in Chorlton before she went to Spain and I am hoping that she will be on a trade directory for 1937 which may give us an address.

And that is important given that there are moves to commemorate her work with a plaque and while the library may be a fitting spot so might the building she lived or worked in.

Today I have been helped by the International Brigade Memorial Trust who have promised to put me in touch with the trustees of the Manchester branch and also Angela Jackson who has written about Ms Addy.

And I now know that she married a second time in 1955 and her husband was Thorkold Hansen who she worked with in France which is important because although she is widely known as Madge Addy, it is by Hansen that I have uncovered more about her.

Madge Addy, 1938
Equally it was as Marguerita Holst that I first uncovered a reference to the OBE she was awarded.

There will be more and that just leave me to make an appeal for anyone who can help.

Location; Chorlton, Spain, and beyond

Pictures; British nurses at work on the front line in Spain courtesy of International Brigade Memorial Trust, the poster Aid for the Basque Heroes, S H Prives, from The Palette and the Flame, 1980 

*The remarkable Madge Addy from Chorlton part 1 ....... the Spanish Civil War and secret operations in France,
**International Brigade Memorial Trust,  

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