1 AUGUST 1952, Page 5

The French Ambassador did well to give a farewell party

on Wednesday in honour of M. Michel St. Denis, who is leav- ing London after many valuable and active years in this country. M. St. Denis, under the pseudonym of Jacques Duchesne, was the leader and inspirer of the gifted team of French broadcasters who during the war sent nightly trans- missions to occupied France on the B.B.C. foreign service. It is difficult to exaggerate the effect of these broadcasts on French public opinion; they were gay, they were witty, they were inspiring and they told the truth. Paul Claudel has described how he and his family would crowd round their radio " like a litter of pigs seeking sustenance "; only with difficulty could they hear the voice of Duchesne and Oberle and Bourdan through the jamming of the German and Vichy wire- less; but what they did hear was a tonic to their nerves and gave them faith in eventual liberation. After the war Michel St. Denis remained behind in London to help the Old Vic with training actors and with their own productions. He now returns to Paris,and will leave behind him memories of a staunch friend, a brilliant companion and a good Frenchman, and the good wishes of all who came in contact with him here.