THE water tower of a former prisoner of war camp which also served as a secret Second World Ware communications hub has been put up for sale.

Simply known as The Water Tower, the building has been renovated in to a five-story house and will cost a new owner £1.2 million to purchase.

The tower is located in High Garrett near Braintree and is listed for sale by Zoe Napier estate agents on the property website OnTheMarket.

Left derelict since the 1950's, the property and it's lands were bought by Jon Oakley and his wife Vicky in 2017 who then lovingly restored it before they discovered the buildings rich history.

The house started life as a water tower for a prisoner of war camp, which opened in 1938.

It is believed the camp, which was called 78 Working Camp, housed near to 700 Italian and German soldiers during World War Two.

Perhaps most remarkable was the tower's secret.

Unknown to local residents, the tower was also a secret communications hub which send warning signals of enemy aircraft to the nearby Wethersfield airbase, which was allocated to the American Airforce at the time.

When Mr Oakley first explored the tower he found vintage wireless radios, switchboards and wiring.

Mr Oakley, 46, said: “The floors were all concrete and there were hatches in each one for a ladder which ran the full height of the building.

“It wasn’t like they had just left the room but the communications equipment was still wired and secured to the walls - it was all rotten and rusty though from exposure.

“We believe it was run by Marconi, the British company which pioneered wireless long distance communication.

“We have had one or two finds in the garden down the years - US Air Force knives, forks, spoons and ink pots, as well as helmets and empty gas mask boxes.”

The building has undergone extensive restoration and renovations since 2017, with Mr Oakley even adding a top level to the building which ad been removed since the original water tank was removed following the war.

Mr Oakley and his wife originally bought the tower for £285,000 and have spent several hundred thousand pounds on the 14 month renovation.

He said: We took a risk buying it, not knowing we would get planning permission.

"We have been able to save a local landmark that was derelict, disused and starting to deteriorate badly.

“Another 30 years and it wouldn’t have been there at all.”

Isobel Pile, from estate agents Zoe Napier which is listing the property, said: “It is a landmark property that has been bravely and exceptionally well converted with its historic integrity in mind.

“For those who are looking for a one-off piece of history and a property with a high-quality finish, this is the property for you.”