Fall of Icarus
Memorial at Hogeweg. Photo: Roel Wijnants

Memorial to 54 exposed agents

A bronze figure created by sculptor Titus Leeser stands to the south-west of the water feature in Van Stolkpark on the edge of Scheveningen Woods: The fall of Icarus. It represents a falling angel with burnt wings and pays tribute to the 54 fallen of Englandspiel (the counter-intelligence operation also known as Operation North Pole), an infamous event during World War II.

Dutch people were trained in England, to return to the Netherlands as secret agents, armed with orders to establish contact with the resistance here and to maintain contact with London via Morse code. Initially, that went well, but a number of agents were arrested in the spring of 1942. The prisoners were forced to keep communicating with England, but to relay messages provided by the Germans. The British were unaware (or perhaps they were, but they did not let on) and simply kept sending secret agents. These were immediately arrested by the Germans on arrival. 54 of them did not survive this Englandspiel. Most were murdered in Mauthausen concentration camp.

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