Kendrick: the MI6 Spy who Saved Austria’s Jews
Helen Fry

Kendrick: the MI6 Spy who Saved Austria’s Jews

Thomas Joseph Kendrick was one of MI6’s most senior spymasters in the 20th century. From tracking Communist agents across Europe in the 1920s to Nazi spies in the 1930s, Kendrick was placed as SIS head of station in Vienna. During the 1930s Vienna was at the heart of Europe’s espionage hub - and one of SIS’s most important stations. In Vienna he crossed paths with the British spy and (later) traitor Kim Philby and Edith Tudor-Hart, figures that would go on to rock the core of the British Secret Service. After Hitler’s annexed Austria in March 1938, Kendrick and his staff worked in 12 hour shifts to save up to 200 Austrian Jews a day. Dubbed “the elusive Englishman” by Hitler’s Secret Service, Kendrick’s real identity eluded the Abwehr for over a year until he was finally denounced by a double agent.

Kendrick’s arrest by the Gestapo in August 1938 caused panic in Whitehall because it was feared that the whole the European network of British spies was at risk. He was unceremoniously thrown out of Austria and returned to Britain with a cloud of espionage charges hanging over him. Kendrick disappeared from public view but not from the ranks of the British Secret Service. He re-emerged during the Second World War, operating a clandestine spy unit against Nazi Germany, first at the Tower of London and then 3 other country estates. Bugging the conversations of German prisoners of war and Hitler’s captured generals, Kendrick masterminded one of the longest and most comprehensive intelligence operations against Nazi Germany. A new revised and expanded biography provides a major reassessment of one of the greatest MI6 spymasters of the 20th century. 

 

Book Details:

  • Author: Helen Fry
  • On Submission
  • Rights Sold
    • UK: Yale University Press
Helen Fry

Helen Fry

Helen Fry was raised in North Devon and went on to graduate from the University of Exeter with a degree and Ph.D. She has written over 25 books on the Second World War with particular reference to the 10,000 Germans and Austrians who fought for Britain, and intelligence, espionage and prisoners of war. Her highly acclaimed book The Walls Have Ears: The Greatest Intelligence Operation of WWII was in the top 8 Daily Mail’s Books of the Year in War, and has been optioned for film. It has been the subject of numerous documentaries and continues to receive media attention. H...
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Book Reviews

  • "The author has a very easy style and the reference to Kim Philby and Edith Tudor-Hart are intriguing. This book should be read in conjunction with the author’s book The M Room. Overall a fascinating and enjoyable book."
    ARRSE (Army Rumour Service)
  • "An exhaustively-researched book on a man whose life cried out for an autobiography... an extremely valuable contribution to our understanding of a secret world."
    The Guardian
  • "This fascinating story is all that one has come to expect of any book by Helen; well researched and above all interesting. One has to wonder what she will dig up next."
    journal of the Intelligence Corps
  • "A gripping, story well told."
    Journal of the Association of Jewish Refugees
  • "...an exhaustively-researched book on a man whose life cried out for an autobiography... an extremely valuable contribution to our understanding of a secret world."
    The Guardian