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Wilton Crescent, SW1 - geograph.org.uk - 213435

Wilton Crescent in London, where the government was based during the war. The exact building can be seen to the centre-right, flying the Luxembourgish flag.

The Luxembourgish government in exile (Luxembourgish language:Lëtzebuerger Exilregierung, French language:Gouvernement en exil luxembourgois, German language:Luxemburgische Exilregierung), also known as the Luxembourgish government in London, was the government in exile of Luxembourg during the Second World War. The government was based in London between 1940 and 1944, while Luxembourg was occupied by Nazi Germany. It was led by Pierre Dupong, and also included three other Ministers. The head of state, Grand Duchess Charlotte, also escaped from Luxembourg after the occupation. The government was bipartite, including two members from both the Party of the Right (PD) and the Socialist Workers' Party (LSAP).

The government was located in 27 Wilton Crescent in Belgravia, London which is today the Embassy of Luxembourg in London.[1] It was located only a few hundred meters from the Belgian government in exile in Eaton Square.

Exile to LondonEdit

The government first fled to Paris, Lisbon and then the United Kingdom.[2] While the Government established itself in Wilton Crescent in London, the Grand Duchess and her family moved to Francophone Montreal in Canada.[2] The government in exile was vocal in stressing the Luxembourgish cause in newspapers in Allied countries and succeeded in obtaining Luxembourgish language broadcasts to the occupied country on British Broadcasting radio.[3]

In 1944, the government in exile signed the London Customs Convention with the Belgian and Dutch governments, laying the foundation for the Benelux Economic Union and also signed into the Bretton Woods system of currency controls.[4]

CompositionEdit

The Luxembourg Grey Book

The Luxembourg Grey Book (1942) published on behalf of the government to inform the Allied public about Luxembourg's role in the conflict.

[5] Minister Name Party
Middle coat of arms of Luxembourg Leader of the Government - Minister of State, Minister of Finance and of the Armed Forces. Pierre Dupong PD
Joseph Bech (detail) Minister of Foreign Affairs, Viticulture, Arts and Sciences, the Interior and of Public Education. Joseph Bech PD
Middle coat of arms of Luxembourg Minister of Work and of Social Security Pierre Krier LSAP
Middle coat of arms of Luxembourg Minister of Justice, Public Works and Transport. Victor Bodson LSAP

Free Luxembourgish forcesEdit

Luxembourgish military involvement could play only a "symbolic role" for the Allied cause,[4] and numerous Luxembourgers fought in other Allied armies. In March 1944, the first all-Luxembourgish unit was created in England. The unit, a gun battery, operated four 25 pounder guns, which they christened Elisabeth, Marie Adelaide, Marie Gabriele and Alix after the Grand duchess' daughters. The unit formed part of C Troop, 1st Belgian Field Artillery Battery of the 1st Belgian Infantry Brigade, which was nicknamed the "Brigade Piron" after its commander Jean-Baptiste Piron.[6] The Troop numbered some 80 men.[7] The battery landed in Normandy with rest of the Brigade Piron on 6 August 1944 and served in the Battle of Normandy and was involved in the Liberation of Brussels in September 1944.[7]

Prince Jean, son of the Grand Duchess and future Grand Duke, served in the Irish Guards from 1942.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

BibliographyEdit

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