Author : Nicholas Reed
History Press, 2020
Most of us remember the seventh of September 1940 as the day the London docks were bombed and devastated by fire. I remember it as the day I was called up. But the police car that collected me took me to Wormwood Scrubs Prison . . . Major Ronnie Reed never spoke about what he did in the Second World War.
He was only 23 when it broke out; an amateur radio enthusiast who was working as a maintenance engineer for the BBC. And yet, despite minimal money and qualifications, he became one of the men behind some of the most remarkable spy stories of all time. Recruited in the dead of night from his Anderson shelter, Ronnie became a case officer for double agents, including Eddie Chapman, known then as Agent Zigzag.
The passport photo of The Man Who Never Was, was a photo of Ronnie Reed. For ten years after the Second World War, he headed the anti-Russian department of MI5, dealing with notorious spies such as Philby, Burgess and Maclean. In 1994, shortly before Ronnie's death, he revealed the truth of his remarkable past to his son, Nicholas.
In Spy Runner he reveals his father's fascinating story with a collection of recently released reports and photos from The National Archives, and intimate family snaps.