Watch the report by ITV Anglia's Stuart Leithes
It sounds like the plot of a Hollywood movie: scientists, being held captive in a Cambridgeshire house with listening devices trying to learn the extent of the Nazi's nuclear capabilities.
But ten German physicists were, in fact, held at Farm Hall in Godmanchester during the Second World War. MI6 wanted to get information about the Nazi nuclear programme. It was known as Operation Epsilon.
The group included three Nobel Prize winners:
- Werner Heisenberg - a pioneer of quantum mechanics
- Otto Hahn - who disovered nuclear fission
- And Max von Laue - who studied x-rays
The mansion was bought by Professor Marcial Echenique, its current owner, in the late 1970s. He discovered wires under under the floorboards where the rooms had been bugged.
Professor Echenique wrote to the surviving scientists who'd been held in his home. Their replies contained fond memories of their spell as wartime captives in Cambridgeshire.
The mission to capture the scientists - and their time in Godmanchester - is the subject of a new book by journalist Colin Brown.
He details how in 1945 troops discovered a nuclear reactor being built at Haigerloch in Germany. They kidnapped scientists to bring them back to the hall in Cambridgeshire, but recordings of their conversations showed that Germany had not developed a nuclear bomb.