Having helped develop technologies used to win two world wars and deter the Soviet Union in the Cold War, the legacy of Britain’s Area 51, known as Orford Ness, is still shaping our world today. What groundbreaking innovations came from this top-secret research and testing site, and why was it used by the British military, the Atomic Weapons Research Establishment, and even the U.S. Department of Defense?
In June, I gave a very well-received online talk for New York Adventure Club on the legacy of Britain’s Orford Ness, a highly classified military site located in a remote part of Britain’s east coast that operated for over 80 years beginning in 1915. The talk was inspired by an article I wrote for BBC Future called ‘The eerie emptiness of ‘Britain’s Area 51’
What the audience thought via a MailChimp questionnaire…
“It was an absolutely fascinating story of true history. The details were abundant. He set the tone for how it felt to be doing this work in this time, how challenging it was, so record-setting it was, and why we never heard of this place or these achievements till today.”
“A lot of great pictures and deep information about the site”
“There was a lot of information about Orford Ness, past and present, the people who worked there and the developments that took place there over several decades. Some especially interesting bits (no parachutes until the end of WWI, for instance) and lots of good photos of planes and weaponry, as well as the present National Trust property.”
“Very interesting topic, about a place I’d never heard of.”
“Because of the amount of detail, this was well worth listening to a second time.”
If you want me to talk to your group about Orford Ness, my book N-4 DOWN, or another topic, email me at mpiesing @ gmail.com – or find me on social media – to begin our conversation.