The man who was arguably the inspiration behind James Bond

The man who was arguably the inspiration behind James Bond will come under the spotlight at a special talk at a Test Valley museum this month.

The lecture, called Codename INTREPID, will see broadcaster and aviation historian, Paul Beaver, present the incredible story of the life of Sir William Stephenson at 7pm on Wednesday 16 March at the Army Flying Museum.

Forming part of the Museum’s popular programme of Lockdown Lectures, Paul will tell the story of Sir William from his humble Canadian beginnings through to his enlistment in the Royal Flying Corps and rapid move through the ranks of the armed forces.

“He was a dedicated soldier, a gifted inventor, an extraordinary businessman and a spy,” says Paul.

“He eventually earned himself the codename Intrepid for his immense bravery and dedication.  

“Stephenson found himself a crucial cog in the war efforts against Nazi Germany in WWII.

“He became the senior official of the British Security Coordination, ensuring that British and American intelligence was safely passed between authorities.

“He became closely affiliated with Winston Churchill, and his wartime antics served as the main inspiration for Ian Fleming’s James Bond.”
The evening will also be live streamed on the Museum’s website, as well as open to a limited in-house audience.  

Afterwards it will open to a Q&A session for both live and online audience members.

A curry supper is also available from the Apache Café at 6pm - advance order only (last orders for curry Sunday 13 March).

Tickets to attend in the Museum are available for £10, which includes a glass of wine or soft drink, the curry supper is available for £7.50.

The event will be available on catch-up directly afterwards on the museum’s website.

For more information visit



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