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NewsLocal NewsEddie Izzard to play unsung Scottish scientist who helped thwart Hitler

Eddie Izzard to play unsung Scottish scientist who helped thwart Hitler

COMEDIAN Eddie Izzard’s is to star in a TV drama playing an unsung Scottish scientist who helped defeat Hitler.

Sir Robert Watson-Watt, from Brechin, Angus, invented radar, giving the RAF a crucial edge in its battle against German bombers.

The film, Castle in the Sky, which is currently being shot in Edinburgh, has been welcomed as giving long overdue recognition to Sir Robert, a descendant of steam engine creator James Watt.

Eddie Izzard will play the role of the unsung Scottish scientist Sir Robert Watson-Watt
Eddie Izzard will play the role of the unsung Scottish scientist Sir Robert Watson-Watt

Radar helped the RAF win the Battle of Britain, which meant they kept control of the skies and thwarted Hitler’s plans for a seaborne invasion.

City of Brechin Civic Trust chairman Brian Mitchell revealed the group has donated £5,000 to the film.

He said: “Brechin Civic Trust sees the film as worthy recognition of the man deemed by many as the greatest Brechiner of the 20th Century, as well as bringing welcome publicity to the town.”

The scientist's invention helped thwart the plans of Hitler
The scientist’s invention helped thwart the plans of Hitler

Former Brechiner, Arabella Page-Croft is a co-producer on the film, produced by Black Camel Pictures of Glasgow with director Gillies MacKinnon.

Mackinnon previously worked with Kate Winslet in Hideous Kinky and Regeneration with Jonny Lee Miller.

Sir Robert, who died in 1973, aged 81, is to be included in the Scottish Engineering Hall of Fame.

His response was a report on detecting aircraft by radio methods, and his theories later proved successful in a trial against a Heyford Bomber
His response was a report on detecting aircraft by radio methods, and his theories later proved successful in a trial against a Heyford Bomber

Planning permission has also been lodged for a plinth and area improvements around a statue in Brechin.

The bronze memorial to Watson-Watt has been completed by internationally-renowned sculptor Alan B Herriot and its in storage at an Edinburgh foundry. It will sit in St Ninian’s square as the Angus town’s first public statue.

He was educated at Brechin High School and studied at University College, Dundee, and was then put in charge of the Air Ministry’s Bawdsey Research Station near Felixstowe, Suffolk.

His work there resulted in a chain of radar stations being set up along the east and south coasts of England in time for the outbreak of war in 1939.

As war loomed in the 1930s, he was asked by the government to find a way to track aircraft amid fears the Nazis had developed a “death ray” which could destroy cities from the air.

His response was a report on detecting aircraft by radio methods, and his theories later proved successful in a trial against a Heyford Bomber.

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