Midland Cottage dedicated to WW2’s glamorous spy Violet Sazbo ‘safe for 1,000 years’

The inspiring detective Violet Sazbo’s World War II moves echoes around a small Midlands cottage that was once his vacation home. The owner was so impressed with Rosemary Rigby Szabo’s story that he built a museum in a cottage area away from the M5.

But now Rosemary has gone even further, preserving the museum space for generations to come from the developers to preserve the memory of the fascinating spy. It has ensured that the field of property is ‘millennium’ green so no one can build on it for 1,000 years.

Szabo was only 23 years old when she died for her country in a concentration camp after escaping interrogation and torture by the Nazis. The unique Violet Sabo GC Museum in Herefordshire, an hour’s drive from Birmingham, tells how French-born British agent Zabo suffered a heart attack.

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Rosemary was 20 when she moved with her mother to a cottage in Vermillo, Herefordshire, in 1963. He discovered that he was previously occupied by Violet’s aunt, uncle and five cousins, so the young spy went there as a child. During the holidays and between combat missions.

Since retiring from the Royal National Institute of Blind People in 1996, Rosemary has dedicated the rest of her life to sharing Violet’s extraordinary story with the world. He set up a museum under his garden in June 2000.

Rosemary rugby inside the Violet Zebo Museum
(Photo: Tom Warren SWNS)

The museum is full of tributes and personal artifacts. Even a packet of violet tea, the cigarette he smoked and his perfume. It paints a realistic picture of the woman who was later posthumously awarded the George Cross and the Crix de Gore for her bravery.

“I am convinced that the soul of this remarkable woman should be remembered,” said Rosemary, “and why not – she gave her life for our country at the age of 23.

“This field is now a thousand years old green and no one can build it on three and a half acres for more than 1,000 years.

Ww2 Heroine Violet Sazbo And Her Husband Etienne, Both Of Whom Died During World War Ii.
WW2 heroine Violet Sazbo and her husband Etienne, both of whom died during World War II.
(Photo: Courtesy Rosemary Rugby / SWNS)

“Violet was a little brave – she says there was no tree she couldn’t climb or no pipe she couldn’t climb. Her family name was ‘Little Monkey’ and it was a Couldn’t have been more suitable for someone who grew up and took over the Gestapo. “

Violet was the daughter of an English father and a French mother, who was born in France at the age of 12 before moving to London. When she was 19, Violet met a French officer named Etienne Szabo, and within weeks they were married.

Etienne continued to serve his country in the army until he was killed fighting in the World War in North Africa, while leading his troops on the battlefield. Sadly, Violet had just given birth to her daughter, Tania, who had never met her father.

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Heartbroken, Sabu signed up for the Special Operations Executive, where she underwent rigorous training to become an agent. Rosemary said the pair were “the most decorated pair in the last war”.

“Both countries gave him every honor he could,” Rosemary said. “It simply came to our notice then.

It was on Szabo’s second mission that she was captured shortly after D-Day in France, near Limoges, trying to coordinate French resistance fighters.

Ww2 Detective Violet Sazbo With His Daughter Tania
WW2 Detective Violet Sazbo with his daughter Tania
(Photo: Courtesy Rosemary Rugby / SWNS)

Violette’s 100th anniversary is being commemorated on July 10 at the Violette Szabo GC Museum, with plans to include the Royal Air Force Fly Pass. For more information, see:

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