Second World War 'suitcase radio'

Second World War 'suitcase radio'

...hidden in what looked like a normal leather suitcase...

This object is a 'spy radio'. It was a type that was widely used by Allied secret agents operating in German-occupied Europe during the Second World War.

The agent could use the radio to communicate with their controllers back in the UK, for example to send information about enemy troop movements or defences.

It was hidden in what looked like a normal leather suitcase, to conceal its purpose from enemy soldiers and police. Its official name was a "Transmitter/Receiver Type 3 Mark 2".

Quick Facts

  • Accession number 2001/70
  • Official name Transmitter/Receiver Type 3 Mark 2
  • Used during The Second World War
  • Date made about 1939-1945
  • Made in England
  • Used in German-occupied Europe


  • During the Second World War Allied troops sometimes dropped small dummies with parachutes from aircraft. These ‘Ruperts’ as they were known were designed to confuse the enemy about where and when real troops were landing. Using intelligence and subterfuge were important weapons in the war as the efforts of the undercover missions and secret code-breakers exemplify.

Did you know?

Some special uniform buttons had a tiny compass built into them to help escape capture by the enemy.

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