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Stalag XXB Marienburg in the Second World War 1939-1945 - The Wartime Memories Project -

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Stalag XXB Marienburg




   Stalag XXB was situated on the outskirts of Marienburg now called Malbork in Poland.

 


If you can provide any additional information, please add it here.



Those known to have been held in or employed at

Stalag XXB Marienburg

during the Second World War 1939-1945.

The names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List

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Pte. Cecil "'Pop'" Hearnden Royal Army Service Corps

My father served in WW1 having falsified his age to join up. He was in the reserve at start of WW2. and went with the BEF to France. During retreat to Dunkirk, he was in ambulance with other wounded and didn't make it to the beaches. They holed up in a barn for a few days but was captured by the Germans and ended up in Stalag XXB. From what I can find out this was the only camp in that area,but I distinctly remember my Mother addressing letters' Nr Konigsburg'. He said very little about his experiences, but he told us he was on the' Long March' he owed his life to a german soldier who dug up vegetables from the fields. I'm just getting around to doing my family history! If anybody can help I'll be very grateful.

Charles Hearnden



James Forbes "Pongo" Adams The Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders

The name James Stobie is so familiar!! My late father was James Forbes Adams of Nairn, was in the Cameron Highlanders (51st Highland Division). He was a drummer with Cameron Highlanders (Territorials) Pipe Band, and as he was 18, he got called up to take place of the 17 year old tip drummer.

James Forbes Adams at breakup of a Territorial camp near Fort George, just prior to hostilities.

After going to France with the BEF (51st HD), he was captured at St. Valery. That's him next to Kenneth Warner at the end of the row in the second photo. (See photo below) I know this, as I still have that portion that my Aunty Marj (ex Wren) had carried around in her purse throughout his captivity. We lived in Nairn until 1959, when we moved to Glenrothes in Fife. Dad was a founding member of the Nairn Pipeband, and later the Co-founded the Glenrothes Pipeband. After that he was involed with teaching youngsters a Cupar PB, and played with the Kelty and Blairadam PB (the year they won the 2nd Grade drumming at World Championships at Perth.

The dreaded telegram his aunty received when he was posted missing.

Dad did attempt escape twice, once in Holland on the long march to Germany, and I believe the other time was when he was at Stalag XXA (Fort 13). He ended up at Stalag XXB. It was hard to get him to talk about his experiences. As a child, I can vividly remember him waking up screaming as a result of the nightmares (right up until the early 60's). He once let his guard down and told me how one night he awoke thinking he was dyingas he was completely soaked in blood. Sadly it was the chap in the bunk above him who had taken his own life.

James M. Adams



James Stobie The Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders

My father, now deceased, James Stobie, was a prisoner of war in Stalag XXB Camp 34. He was private No. 5783 in the Cameron Highlanders. I have several photos of him taken there in uniform, and in a band and a concert. If anyone knows of my Dad or could shed some light on his time there, could they let me know. I would be very interested.

Margaret Hubble



Robert Hedges Cameronians (Scottish Rifles)

Robert Hedges

My father Robert 'Bob' Hedges was interned in Stalag XXB for the duration of the war. He served with the Cameronians and was captured during the retreat to Dunkirk. He told me that he and two others were hiding in a pig sty when they were discovered. The three of them were made to dig three graves and were then told to stand by the edge - only then did the Germans drag out three of their own dead and proceeded to bury them. Thinking the graves were going to be theirs he said - 'It took us a bloody long time to dig 'em'

Robert Hedges



Hugh Ruddock C Company Kings Royal Rifle Corps

I am trying to trace any members of the Kings Royal Rifle Corps, C Company, who were captured at Calais 1940, and who may have been with my father when he was also captured by the Germans. I am trying to trace his time in Germany as a POW. He was taken to Stalag 20A then transferred to Stalag 20B where it is thought he stayed until freed by the Americans in 1945. Any help with this matter would be extremely appreciated.

Keith Ruddock



Private Robert Lional Mead Royal Army Service Corps (d.2004)

My Dad, Private Robert Lional Mead, served with the Royal Army Service Corps. He was captured at Dunkirk and spent the duration of the war in Stalag XXB. He is in the picture sent in by Robert Hedges' family. We have several photos taken in Stalag XXB. He died in 2004 aged 91.

Val Pearce



Reub Silver King's Royal Rifle Corps

My father was Reub Silver, of the Kings Royal Rifle Corps, he was a POW in Stalag XXB five years. So interesting reading all the stories which are so similar to the stories he used to relate to me when he came home. How lucky I was to have him come home, even though he eventually passed away at age 45 from a heart attack, which I think was caused by being a POW.

Greta Silver-Rindner



Arthur Edward Potterton Ambulance Driver RASC

I'm preparing the war diary of Arthur Potterton, an ambulance driver with the RASC, into booklet form for his son and daughter. He was enlisted at Thorpe Barracks Birmingham October 1939, was captured at Steenvorde May 1940 and transferred to various POW camps in Poland near Danzig (Gdanske) also working on various farms nr Marienburg. January 1945 he was on the long walk (800Km) from Marienburg/Willenburgh until they were picked up by 104th Division 1st Army (American) April 26th 1945. I would much appreciate any info you can give me, especially his service number, his family have very little info on their father except the diary notes, a photo of him in uniform taken on enlistment and a group photo taken at Stalag XXb.603 in 1944. I have very roughly worked out the route of the 'WALK' but any more detail would be appreciated

Dennis Maltby



Pte. Thomas Andrew " " Gray

I am doing research on my grandfather Thomas Andrew Gray who was captured at Calais in May 1940. I have just received information from the Red Cross showing the various camps he was held at which included by date, Stalag xxa,111a,111d,xxa,xxb and finally 111a again.

Darren Quinn



Pte. James Albert Meadowcroft 1st Battalion Oxford & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry

My father, James Meadowcroft, was captured at 2130 hrs in Hazebrouk, Northern France on 27 May 1940 with a group headed by Major Elliot Viney who had been in an orphanage garden. He was taken by train across Germany to Stalag XXB in Poland.

I was born in 1940 and did not see my father until he returned home. I understand he walked out across Poland and was picked up by the Americans who flew him back to Wescott Bucks. He was taken to Hartwell House near Aylesbury to clean up, which was only a mile or so across the fields from home.

I have a few POW photos from this time but otherwise know nothing about his time in the POW camp. For years after I can remember him waking in the night, swearing in German as described by another writer on this site.

I would appreciate if anyone has any further information as he would never talk to me about his experiences. Two years ago I attended a ceremony in Hazebrouk where they have set up a plaque remembering the stand taken by the Ox and Bucks and others. Also a similar ceremony at Cassel.

Ron Meadowcroft



Signalman Albert Derbyshire Royal Corps of Signals (d.19th Jan 1945)

I would like to find any information regarding my Great Uncle, Signalman Albert Derbyshire 2584305. He was captured on 3/6/40 at St Omer and sent to Stalag XXA on 21/7/40 Prisoner No. 18781. He was transferred to Stalag XXB in Oct 41. He died on 19/1/45 and this is the part that hurts the family as we don`t know how. I thought that he possibly died on one of the forced marches but, reading some of the stories on this site it would seem he died before the marches began.

Paul Rowley



Spr. Leonard Victor Selleck Royal Engineers

We are looking for details of Leonard Victor Selleck, he was a prisoner of war during ww2 we don't at what camp possibly one in Italy we have recently found a new testament bible belonging to him that was given to him by the "Ecumenical Commission for the Chaplaincy service to the prisoners of war" inside it had his service number 610976 and his prisoner of war number 140865. We also know he was a sapper but this is all can anyone give us details of how to find information on what camp he was at or any other details of his service history, we do know that he escaped from one camp and then the boat he was on was sunk and he was recaptured, any info would be gratefully received.

Update: Leonard was held in Stalag XIB at Fallingbostel, Lower Saxony, Germany, but it is quite likely he was held in other camps too. Please see our family history page for details on how to obtain further records.

Tessa Reeves



Pte. Thomas Strachan Mcallister Cameron Highlanders

I recently discovered that my grandfather Thomas McAllister was a p.o.w in Stalag xxb during WW2.

Kirsten Macmillan



Cpl. James Duguid MM. att Gordon Highlander Royal Corps of Signals (d. )

I am reserching the wartime history of my late Grandfather, James Duguid who served with the Royal corps of Signals attached to the Gordon Highlanders In the 51st Highland Division. He was captured at St Valery in 1940 (he was awarded the Military Medal for his conduct in this action) He was a prisoner of war for the remainder of the war in Stalag XXB (20B) in Poland.

We have very little information on either the awarding of the medal or his time in the camp. As like many of his generation he was reluctant to talk about his wartime exploits. I would be grateful for any information, assistance or memories anyone can provide. Many thanks for a very useful website.

Trevor Miles



Richard John Bunt HMS Rawalpindi (d. )

My dad’s brother, Richard John Bunt, served on the ‘Rawalpindi.’ Both brothers, from their S-459 Certificate of Service, were in the RNR. My dad joined 24 November 1923 and my uncle joined on 26 October 1925.

From what I recall, both brothers said they would stand side by side and were always on the same team. Due to being in the RNR they were both called up on the 26 August 1939 and as usual they stood together. This time however, their orders were my dad the ‘Hector’ and Uncle Richard the ‘Rawalpindi.’ My dad went south to Australia and my uncle headed up to Scapa Flow. As one of the few survivors of the attack he was captured by the Germans and sent to a PoW camp.

I remember my Uncle Richard talking about a camp next to the camp where he was and how the lorries would go out with bodies on the back, some of the limbs still moving. We as a family thought he was in Germany but with this new publishing release of the PoW details we found his name listed under Stalag XXB in Poland.

As I read the pages of ‘A Defiant Slaughter’ (By Ian Johnson, posted on www.worldnavalships.com) it was so well written, I could actually picture the attack on the Rawalpindi in my mind, as if I was watching a film.

Richard Bunt was a prisoner of war from 24 November 1939 until 26 April 1945.

Eleanor Bunt



Pte. Rupert Ainsley Wright 2nd Btn. Royal Warwickshire Regiment

I joined the Territorial Army in 1938 and was called up on September 3rd 1939 in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment in Coventry. I was sent to Swindon for basic training and then we were shipped to France via Le Havre at Christmas. We were stationed near Lille in Northern France with the BEF.

Infantry training continued until May 1940 when we were sent to Belgium to try to hold the German attack on France. We also experienced action in Holland. I was taken prisoner at Houthem, near Ypres.

We were marched with thousands of other British and French troops through Rotterdam in Holland and then crammed into coal barges and taken up the Rhine to Germany. The Dutch were the only people who tried to give us food. I remember I was given a very old Blue & Red coat to wear with a brown blood stain on the front. I imagined this was possibly from the Franco Prussian war of 1871.

We were then herded into cattle wagons with (70 men to a wagon) on a German railway, and then taken to a siding at a station in Berlin where trestle tables had been set up with food on the platform. Red Cross nurses stood by with baskets of bread and one wagon was opened to allow men to stand by for food. German propaganda camera teams took photographs. The prisoners were then returned to the wagons having not been allowed to eat any of the food.

The train continued on to Poland and East Prussia and arrived at Marienburg. There were 10,000 men in camp with a 20ft barbed wire fence all around. This was Stalag XXA. I was later at Stalag XXB.

Our food consisted of one litre of watery potato soup per day with black bread or a handful of dog biscuits. Pea soup was boiled in huge cauldrons still in the sacks and meat was almost non-existent. One day a man sitting next to me received an entire horse’s hoof complete with nails in it. The public latrine consisted of a large pit in the ground approximately 20ft long and 6ft wide and 6ft deep.

I had a small understanding of the German language learnt at school which I improved on and I became on of the interpreters who were in short supply. I volunteered for farm work and was sent to a work camp in East Prussia with others who worked on the land. Red Cross parcels began to arrive which helped the food situation a little. We even received some basic German medical care. Dental care in my case, as I was unfortunate to be standing behind another POW who answered back a German Guard and instead of him receiving the end of a rifle butt (he ducked down) I received it on my jaw, knocking out some front teeth.

We made several attempts to contact “underground” with escape in mind but were always told that RAF crews were given priority because of bomber losses over Germany. Aircrew were more expensive to train. I was involved in an escape plan but decided the night before not to go. Those that did were found the following morning. They had all been shot.

I remember on another occasion we had heard that there was a coal miners strike in Britain. There was a petition drawn up that everyone signed to say that we would gladly swap places with the miners and we would work the mines instead. This was apparently sent to Winston Churchill. We never got a reply.

I have another memory that many prisoners took up smoking, I mean those who never had back home, and cigarettes being scarce, people experimented with oak gall. This being poisonous, the guards threatened to shoot anyone caught smoking it in the future.

Another memory I have is how some of the men would receive letters from their wives to say that they couldn’t wait any longer and that they had found themselves new partners. The men would publicly display the letters for the other men to read.

In 1944, American planes began bombing which was always in daylight.

Christmas 1945, heavy artillery was heard coming from the east. The Russian army was getting closer and soon all allied prisoners were force to march westward into Germany. British, American, French and thousands of inmates from the death-camps were herded away from the battlefront. As a result we received no more Red-Cross parcels.

We marched along the Baltic coast in the snow and on Easter Sunday we arrived on the River Elbe at Wittenberg. There were rumours from Polish slave workers that the American army was just across the river, which was about a quarter of a mile wide. We were then moved northwards to the Hamburg area. RAF Typhoons now started to visit us, everyday they would fly about 20ft overhead up and down the long column of prisoners with an occasional waggle of wings to give us a sign of recognition, to much waving and cheering. The terrified guards would leap into the adjacent ditches on the roadside. I remember the joy of seeing the red, white and blue spandrels on their wings instead of the usual black crosses.

American tanks caught up on May 2nd 1945 to liberate us. One American officer (who had been drinking) asked the prisoners if anyone (meaning our guards) “had given us grief?” whilst offering us his machine gun. Nobody took him up on the offer. We were then taken by troop carriers to British headquarters in Lunaberg. We had marched well over 1,000 miles and had our first hot bath in years. We had said at one point to our liberators not to get close as we all had lice. We were told by one soldier that they had had them for months too.

An opportunity arose to meet Field Marshall Mongomery who asked us if there were any “Royal Warwicks” amongst us, that being his old regiment. We were then taken to Lubeck on the Baltic and flown home in a Lancaster bomber with 25 men in the bomb bay. On arrival we learnt that the plane behind us had crashed in France and all were killed.

After 6 weeks leave at home, the army selection panel offered me a temporary commission as an interpreter in Germany if I signed on for a further two years. I declined the offer. I was posted instead to Oxford Ordinance HQ and de-mobbed in 1946.

Like many other POW’s, I brought back a German steel helmet, epaulettes and a Luger as souvenirs.

Peter Wright



Tpr. G Bates

Trooper G Bates 321325 Prisoner of war 5494 Stalag XXB110

Mark Jones



Pte. John Gillott Duke of Wellington's The West Riding

My father, John (Jack) Gillott was in the Duke of Wellington's Regiment, The West Riding, and was Pte. J. Gillott 862992. He wrote a small autobiography for his 5 children, of which I am the oldest. I learned a lot about my father with this book. Dad, who turned 90 on June 27, 2010 and is still living as of this date, joined the Royal Artillery in 1936 and was called into action on September 3, 1939 the day WW II was declared. My dad was shot 3 times in the fleshy part of his hip by the enemy and to this day still has one bullet inside his body - something Dad didn't even realize until many years later - it was at one point in his left chest very close to his heart. The surgeons on several occasions have told him the bullet 'travelled' and by the time the surgery was scheduled, the bullet itself could have 'moved' again. Dad and many of the men in his Regiment were captured and sent to Stalag XXB. I have a very dark photo which I will try to lighten up and put here. Dad only mentions the names of 2 of his friends in XXB, one being Gordon Rolls who apparently was the son of Rolls Royce automobiles, who Dad said used his name and influence to buy food etc. for the men in XXB. The other man mentioned was Cassagrande and it doesn't mention if this is the first or last name. On January 11, 1945 the start of the 'Black March' began and Dad didn't know the exact date but he thought May 1945 he and his friends were turned over to the American sector for liberation. There is so much in his book of 100 pages or so that I would love to reprint here. I would think not too many members of his Regiment are alive today but the one paragraph I will copy verbatim is this one: "It was June 4: history recorded the evacuation of Dunkirk was completed on this day. There was however, no mention of the men who had sacrificed their lives and others who had been wounded or taken prisoner, simply because they had been sacrificed defending the embarkation of the bulk of the British Army. These men at least deserved a medal, however, I am not aware that any such medal was awarded other than the '39-'45 Star which did not honour the defendants of Dunkirk." I love you Dad more than you'll ever know and thank you and your friends at Stalag XXB for helping give me the free life I have today, all because of you!

Carole Gillott



Pte. Henry Francis Hudson Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment (d.13th Jan 1942)

My uncle Henry Hudson was in Stalag xxb. He was shot in the head by a German for refusing to go to work in a farm. He was 24 years old. He was buried in the camp then later reburied at Malbork War Cemetery. I have a photo of his grave in the camp.

Kathleen Maclaren



Clifford Rupert Wright Royal Warwickshire Regiment

I joined the Territorial Army in 1938 and was called up on September 3rd 1939 in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment in Coventry. I was sent to Swindon for basic training and then we were shipped to France via Le Havre at Christmas. We were stationed near Lille in Northern France with the BEF. Infantry training continued until May 1940 when we were sent to Belgium to try to hold the German attack on France. We also experienced action in Holland. I was taken prisoner at Houthem, near Ypres.

We were marched with thousands of other British and French troops through Rotterdam in Holland and then crammed into coal barges and taken up the Rhine to Germany. The Dutch were the only people who tried to give us food. We were then herded into cattle wagons with (70 men to a wagon) on a German railway, and then taken to a siding at a station in Berlin where trestle tables had been set up with food on the platform. Red Cross nurses stood by with baskets of bread and one wagon was opened to allow men to stand by for food. German propaganda camera teams took photographs. The prisoners were then returned to the wagons having not been allowed to eat any of the food.

The train continued on to Poland and East Prussia and arrived at Marienburg. There were 10,000 men in camp with a 20ft barbed wire fence all around. This was Stalag XXA. I was later at Stalag XXB.

Our food consisted of one litre of watery potato soup per day with black bread or a handful of dog biscuits. Pea soup was boiled in huge cauldrons still in the sacks and meat was almost non-existent. One day a man sitting next to me received an entire horse’s hoof complete with nails in it. The public latrine consisted of a large pit in the ground approximately 20ft long and 6ft wide and 6ft deep.

I had a small understanding of the German language learnt at school which I improved on and I became on of the interpreters who were in short supply. I was then sent to a work camp in East Prussia with others who worked on the land. Red Cross parcels began to arrive which helped the food situation a little. We even received some basic German medical care.

We made several attempts to contact “underground” with escape in mind but were always told that RAF crews were given priority because of bomber losses over Germany. Aircrew were more expensive to train. I was involved in an escape plan but decided the night before not to go. Those that did were found the following morning. They had all been shot.

I remember on one occasion we had heard that there was a coal miners strike in Britain. There was a petition drawn up that everyone signed to say that we would gladly swap places with the miners and we would work the mines instead. This was apparently sent to Winston Churchill. We never got a reply. Another time some of the prisoners had taken up smoking (even those who never did back home) cigarettes being scarce, people experimented with oak gall. This being poisonous, the guards threatened to shoot anyone caught smoking it in the future.

In 1944, American planes began bombing which was always in daylight. At Christmas 1945, heavy artillery was heard coming from the east. The Russian army was getting closer and soon all allied prisoners were force to march westward into Germany. British, American, French and thousands of inmates from the death-camps were herded away from the battlefront. As a result we received no more Red-Cross parcels.

We marched along the Baltic coast in the snow and on Easter Sunday we arrived on the River Elbe at Wittenberg. There were rumours from Polish slave workers that the American army was just across the river, which was about a quarter of a mile wide. We were then moved northwards to the Hamburg area. RAF Typhoons now started to visit us, everyday they would fly about 20ft overhead up and down the long column of prisoners with an occasional waggle of wings to give us a sign of recognition, to much waving and cheering. The terrified guards would leap into the adjacent ditches on the roadside. I remember the joy of seeing the red, white and blue spandrels on their wings instead of the usual black crosses.

American tanks caught up on May 2nd 1945 to liberate us. One American officer (who had been drinking) asked the prisoners if anyone (meaning our guards) “had given us grief?” whilst offering us his machine gun. Nobody took him up on the offer. We were then taken by troop carriers to British headquarters in Lunaberg. We had marched well over 1,000 miles and had our first hot bath in years. We had said at one point to our liberators not to get close as we all had lice. We were told by one soldier that they had had them for months too.

An opportunity arose to meet Field Marshall Mongomery who asked us if there were any “Royal Warwicks” amongst us, that being his old regiment.

We were then taken to Lubeck on the Baltic and flown home in a Lancaster bomber with 25 men in the bomb bay. On arrival we learnt that the plane behind us had crashed in France and all were killed.

After 6 weeks leave at home, the army selection panel offered me a temporary commission as an interpreter in Germany if I signed on for a further two years. I declined the offer. I was posted instead to Oxford Ordinance HQ and de-mobbed in 1946. Like most other ex POW’s, I brought back a German steel helmet, epaulettes and a Luger as souvenirs.

Clifford Wright



Gnr. Herbert Varney Royal Artillery

My Grandfather, Gunner Herbert Varney, was captured in June 1940 somewhere near Calais. He was transported to Stalag XXB where I think he spent the remainder of the war. I would be grateful if anyone has any information/ photographs which mention or show him. His POW number was 8406. Unfortunately my Grandfather passed away in June 1977, but my Grandmother is very interested in any mention of him.

Tim Varney



Pte. Harry Godfrey 17th London General Hospital Royal Army Medical Corps

I am researching the wartime experiences of my late father, Private Harry Godfrey. He came from Nottingham and he was a Private in the RAMC 17th London General Hospital.

He was captured on or around 22nd May 1940 near Dunkirk and spent the next 3 and a half years in prisoner of war camps. I know he was held for a time in Stalag XXB, being released in October 1943.

Like many others he was very reluctant to talk about his experiences, only occasionally opening up and only then towards the end of his life (he died in 2004). I believe he may also have been held elsewhere but have no details. He had a close friend from Nottingham, the late Albert Alvey, who was also in the same RAMC Unit, but held separately from my father. From what my father did tell me conditions were extremely harsh, only improving a little when Red Cross parcels arrived later on. I have his camp identification tags and a couple of what appear to be receipts from the Camp authorities for items of bedding and clothing that were posted from home later on in his captivity.

My father talked very little of his experiences and I would be delighted to hear from anyone who remembers him, or from anyone who recognises themselves, or a relative in this picture. I would also be pleased to hear from anyone who was serving in the RAMC 17th or is related to someone who was.

Howard Godfrey



Pte. Fredrick Charles Cator Royal Norfolk Regiment

I trying to find out about my father's POW experiences. He was Frederick Cator and he served in the Royal Norfolks and was captured at St.Valery-en-Caux and imprisoned at Stalag XXb. I know that he tried to escape on more than one occasion but was always recaptured. He took part in what is known as The Death March on which he was so hungry that on coming across a field of tomatoes he ate so many that he made himself sick and never ate a tomato again for the rest of his life. Like so many he hardly ever spoke of his experiences but kept everything bottled up.

Peter Cator



Private W P Jones Royal West Kent Regiment

I have started collecting medals and now have the replacement medals for Pte W P Jones Regt No. 6463242. The most important aspect of collecting medals is to find out about the recipient and I have found that W P Jones was a POW at Stalag 20B, Prisoner No. 7777.

The set of medals I have also includes the Korean War service medals and this states his Regiment as MX, which I assume is the Middlesex. It also is offically stamped "R" for replacement. It would be great if someone identified him in one of the photos. If anyone may be able to help me find out more about W. P. Jones I will be very appreciative.

Charles Hunt



L/Cpl. Bartholomew "Chalky" White Green Howards

My grandfather, Bartholomew White was taken POW at Dunkirk and held at Stalag XX-B in Poland.

Elaine Elsom



Pte. Edward Hart 2nd Battalion Seaforth Highlanders

Ned Hart was captured at Le Tot outside St Valery En Caux on the 13th of June 1940 and given Prisoner number 18573. He arrived at Stalag XXA on the 10th of July 1940 from Dulag then transferred to Stalag XXB on 30th of October 1940. He is reputed to have escaped on Long March and hid and worked on a Polish Farm. He was repatriated by the Russians who threw him in jail for a number of weeks. He hated the Russians more than the Germans.

There is a published story of a POW escaped from another camp who hid in XXB until the hue and cry died down before slipping away. Ned was a cook and hid the prisoner in a wall cavity behind the cooking cauldrons. He would get out to play football for exercise then return to his cupboard. Finally he slipped away unnoticed. Any details of this would be greatly appreciated. I've read Bill Inne's St Valery, also Doctor behind barbed wire.

In the photograph, are Seaforths at XXB with Ned third from right bottom row (discovered recently in the archives of a newspaper published in 1941)

Jim Hart



Arthur Edward "Tommo" Thomas Welsh Guards

My grandfathers Arthur Thomas was a POW at Marienburg, Poland (Stalag XXb). Unfortunately he didn't speak much about his experiences during the Second World War and has passed away since so alot of what I know is very sketchy and based on snipits of things he would say very seldomly.

He was captured during the evacuation of Dunkirk while he was making up the force holding the Germans back with a Welsh regiment. There is a bit of confusion unfortuately as to who he was fighting with as we think he was either with the Welsh Gaurds or the Welsh Fusiliers and this is proving very difficult to ascertain. I remember him talking about being cornered and captured in a barn somewhere by the SS and Panzer crew and subsequently marched off to this POW camp. He also mentioned about doing some forced labour work on some farms there and how they were eventually forced marched back across to Germany in a bid to avoid the advancing Russians, and how they would survive on any food they could get their hands on.

I would love to learn more about his experience during those times and from anyone who may remember him. Arthur Edward Thomas who came from Mountain Ash, South Wales. He would have been approx 18 or 19 years old at the time and spent the entire war as a POW at Marienburg following his capture. Sadly I do not possess any pictures of him from those days or have anything that would link him to a regiment or the POW camp and very little stories to expand on despite knowing for sure that he was involved in everything I've mentioned.

Andrew Thomas



Gdsm. Harold Henry Hamer 2nd Battalion Welsh Guards

Harry Hamer joined the 2nd Battalion Welsh Guards just before the war. He had despised working in the mines and wanted to join the police force but had not managed it. He was told that if he went into the army, he stood a better chance of getting into the police force afterwards. Little did he know what was to happen.

In May 1940 his Battalion had held Boulogne whist non combatants were taken to safety. They were under heavy bombardment from sea, air and land until they had to surrender to save civilian lives. As POWs they were marched over 200 miles to the German border to a town called Trier. They were then transported by train, each wagon holding 70 men and for the next 2 days they received no food, water or means to relieve themselves.

Harry spent the next five years in a POW camp in Poland, Stalag 20B Marienburg (Prisoner of War No: 9651.)

Then in 1945 the Russians were advancing and they were told to parade outside and to carry enough warm clothes (it was 36 degrees below zero). For the next 3 months they were forced to march over 600 miles, sleeping in barns, sheds and stables. If they collapsed or gave up they were shot. Many had frostbite. They finally arrived at Stendahl which is on the western side of the River Elbe. The Americans bombed this town and they were forced to march back the way they came. The sick and injured were left behind.

On this march Harry and his friend Robbo escaped from the column. They made their way back to Stendahl which took 2 weeks as the bridges had been blown. They found a greenhouse to take cover in and lived on lettuce for the next three or four days. They were then recaptured by a German patrol and put into a Gestapo prison cell for the next five days. From there they were marched to another POW camp which was full of Irish soldiers and were for the next five days were spoilt with good food. In the middle of the night they were told to get out quick and go to the cellars in town and at 2am the Russians arrived. The Town Mayor came out to declare the village open and was immediately shot dead. His daughter was part of the group with Harry and she knew that her father had died. They were all dragged out of the cellar and made to line up and it took some persuading that Harry and Robbo were British soldiers.

Then they made their way back through the Russian lines. One day looking into the corner of the next field he saw a German Tiger tank which starting to fire at them. The Russians responded to this and knocked out the tank. It was whilst they were being fired upon that Harry received severe injuries which shattered his right leg. He managed to drag himself into a shed and an Irish soldier applied a tourniquet to stop the flow of blood. He lay there with no field dressings or any pain killers and was awake until the following evening. Along came a Polish family who had pinched a tractor and trailer and laid Harry on the back of a house door and put him onto the trailer. They took him on a very bumpy and painful ride to a front line Russian dressing station in Germany. There were 100s of Russian soldiers waiting to be seen and Harry had to wait his turn and in all that time the two Irish soldiers waited with him. The doctor eventually had a look and said that he had to have his leg off below the knee. The two Irish lads saw that Harry was okay and then left. They even wrote to Harry's parents when they got to Blighty and explained what had happened to their son.

His operations didn't end there as when he was taken to another field hospital further back behind the Russian lines and due to gangrene the doctor said that he had to amputate above his knee or he would be dead by the morning. Harry was then taken to Buch Hospital in Berlin and one of the things that he remembers about it was there was a lot of commotion and he later found out that Hitler's body had been brought in. Also at the Hospital, there were many dying Russian soldiers.

From Buch Hospital he was airlifted to a Hospital in Poland which was Russian, in a town called Landsberg, where he received very good treatment for the next 5 months. He found it very difficult to get back home but eventually after a lot of discussions they put Harry onto a train which came down from Warsaw to Berlin. The train stopped at Landsberg and with a Russian Nurse to accompany him they travelled to Berlin. Outside the station they flagged down a British vehicle but were ignored probably due to the fact that he was wearing a Russian uniform. Along came a second vehicle and due to Harry shouting to him in typical Army language he stopped. He explained the situation and the driver took him to an ex-POW reception centre. He was treated like royalty and they gave him a tin of Gold Flake and chocolate, He was made very welcome even though at this stage they had not confirmed his identity.

He was later interrogated by intelligence not only to identify Harry but for his knowledge on the Russians. He was then flown to Brussels and then Northolt in London. Whilst in the Shendley Military Hospital in Hertfordshire his two brothers, after first waving him off to war six years earlier, came to visit him. He eventually was admitted to Rookwood Hospital in Cardiff and the reason why his wound wouldn't heal was that they found a piece of khaki uniform in his stump. After this was removed his wound closed and healed. On the ward was a lovely little nurse whom he fell madly in love with and they were still together 60 years later. How romantic. And what a lovely ending to a very traumatic and disturbing experience. This Story was published in the BLESMA magazine. Sadly Harold passed away in 2006.

Iori Hamer



Pte. William Smellie Weir 4th Battalion (d.21st Dec 1945 )

I am member of "Group 9 May" which in the past two years has been looking for graves of Soviet soldiers in the UK and the former Soviet Union. Some time ago in a database of the Ministry of Defence of Russia, I found an entry telling about a British soldier who died in Russia during the Second World War. Since then I've been collecting material about him and eventually I stopped just in front of one question - to find his relatives.

A brief history of William Weir: he was in the British Army since 1939. During the action was in German captivity in the area of ​​Dunkirk. Was in a POW camp XX-B. After liberation (or escaping) he was sent to the Russian Military hospital 2860 were he died. He was buried in the Nizhny Novgorod region, Volodarsky area in the village Golyshevo. Date of Birth - 1918, Date of death - 21 December 1945. Defore WW2 he lived in Renton (Scotland), Back Street 132. His Mother's name was Mary Dunn Weir.

His name is on column N128 in Dunkirk Memorial, but his grave is in Russia. His relatives still do not know anything about him. Please help me to find them so they may know of his fate!

Roman Firsov



Pte. James Finlayson Christie Seaforth Highlanders

My Grandfather James Christie was in the Seaforth Highlanders and was imprisoned at Stalag XX-B. I knew very little about his time there as he died when I was only 12. However, I have since come across some pictures of him in the Camp and discovered some basic information through www.ancestry.co.uk

Lorraine Garvie



William George "Lynn" Turner Royal Welsh Fusiliers

My Father, William George Turner, was born in Abercynon S. Wales, he was in the Royal Welsh. He was captured at Dunkirk and imprisoned at Stalag XX-B, he never spoke of his capture so I don't know anything about it. He was married to my mother and they resided in Leeds, Yorks, England when he was captured, so this may be where he listed his home address. His brother Lewis Turner was also captured and held so any info on either my father or uncle would be great.

Pat Mitchelson



Pte. Charles Edwood Haythorne King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry

My great grandfather, Charles Edwood Haythorne, otherwise known as Ted, served in the K.O.Y.L.I Regiment. He was part of the British Expeditionary Force which was captured at Ypres where he was part of the rear guard for Dunkirk.

I have found a photograph on this site of prisoners in Stalag XXB, which one of them, I believe, is my great grandfather. From my relatives I believe he was taken from Stalag XXB and put to work in a labour camp. He informed the Germans he was a farmhand instead of telling them the truth, that he was a miner because he would have been put in the mines, which he knew would have led to his death in a matter of months, weeks or even days.

I know some time in the early 1980’s he was offered a medal for his services at Dunkirk which he refused to send for as he said quote “If its took all these years to say I deserved a medal for what I did, I don’t want it.” My great grandfather didn’t agree with the length of time that it took the British Government to decide that all those that suffered, served and many that gave their lives in protecting Dunkirk needed a medal. Which could have, quite rightly, been issued many years before. He thought it was a disgrace how many of those who served had passed away after the war with no recognition for what they did.

If anyone can help me in finding out information on my great grandfather and how to retrieve his service medals (and Dunkirk medal) please can you email me with any information at all; it would be really appreciated.

Jemma Gill



Mark Bernard Hebburn Royal Artillery

Stalag 3d

Hello There! I have been doing some research into my husband's family history and came across your site when I 'googled' Stalag XXB. My father-in-law, Mark Bernard Hebburn was a POW there for a substantial part of the war, like many of your other participants having been captured in France in 1940. He didn't really talk much to his sons about his time as a prisoner, but from time to time he would drop a snippet of information to me as we chewed the fat with a cup of tea in front of the fire!

It is a great shame that he died in 2002 and took a lot of his stories with him. During the war he was serving as a Lance Bombadier with the Royal Artillery. His service number was 819389 and his POW number at Thorn was 18598 ( I have his dog tag). He told me that for some time during his stay at Thorn he worked on a farm. He also developed acute appendicitis and very nearly died of peritonitis so presumably was hospitalised for some time. By September 1944 he had been transferred to Stalag 3D near Berlin and the photographs I am attaching are from that time. The writing on the back of the cards has been mostly censored. In the uniformed photograph Mark hebburn is in the front row, far right as you look at it. Something that may jog a memory from someone (I am hoping so) is that just before he left Thorn for Berlin Mark fathered a child, Margaret who we think was probably born round July 1945. I would love to find her and her family but really don't know where to start looking. If anyone out there knew Mark or can fill in any of the gaps, I would be very grateful.

Barbra Hebburn



Richard John Bunt HMS Rawalpindi

My dad’s brother, Richard John Bunt, served on HMS Rawalpindi. Both brothers, from their S-459 Certificate of Service, were in the RNR. My dad joined 24 November 1923 and my uncle joined on 26 October 1925.

From what I recall, both brothers said they would stand side by side and were always on the same team. Due to being in the RNR they were both called up on the 26 August 1939 and as usual they stood together. This time however, their orders were my dad to HMS Hector and Uncle Richard to HMS Rawalpindi. My dad went south to Australia and my uncle headed up to Scapa Flow.

As one of the few survivors of the attack Richard was captured by the Germans and sent to a POW camp. I remember my Uncle Richard talking about a camp next to the camp where he was and how the lorries would go out with bodies on the back, some of the limbs still moving. We as a family thought he was in Germany but with this new publishing release of the POW details we found his name listed under Stalag XXB in Poland. Richard Bunt was a prisoner of war from 24 November 1939 until 26 April 1945.

As I read the pages of ‘A Defiant Slaughter’ (By Ian Johnson, posted on www.worldnavalships.com) it was so well written, I could actually picture the attack on the Rawalpindi in my mind, as if I was watching a film.

Eleanor Parsons



Charles Edward Haythorne Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry

My father, Charles Edward Haythorne (known as Teddy) was captured at Dunkirk and was taken to the POW camp Stalag XXb. If anyone can tell me anything about him please get in touch.

Margaret Haywood



Spr. Thomas Vernon Hughes Royal Engineers

My sister and I went to Gdansk recently to find where our father, Thomas Vernon Hughes was held prisoner in Stalag 20b Malbork. He was captured on the 25th of May 1940 between Boulogne and Calais and released by the Americans 9th Army 12th April 1945.

If anyone can remember him or wishes to contact me for more information please get in touch.

Marion Hughes



Sgt. James Blake Bartlett 1st Btn. Kings Royal Rifle Corps

My late father was a prisoner in Stalag 383. His name was Sgt James Blake Bartlett of the KRRC 1 QVR's. He was captured at Calais 23.5.1940 and according to his army record first went to Stalag XXA in 1940 then to XXB in 1941 and to Stalag 111C which was renamed Stalag 383 in November 1942 where he stayed until release on the 11.5.1945.

I can still remember his home coming even to this day, our mum woke us up to say this is your Dad, as I was only 3 when he went away and now I was 8, so did not remember him all that much. He passed away in 1992 and never spoke much about his time as a POW.

Geoff Bartlett



Cpl. R W Clark Reconnaissance Corps

In my late mother's papers was a photograph of men taken at Stalag XXB main camp eastern district group. All men are in uniform. on the back of the postcard, addressed to my mother in pencil, is No 3677 Oflag 111 Germany and the name Cpl. RW Clark. Also the number 14610 and the name Clark is on the side. As my mother was brought up just outside Dundee in Angus I would imagine this chap came from there too. I would love to know more and as there are no family members left to ask I am relying on someone else solving this mystery.

My mother's name was Flora Linn and she lived at Greenford, Monikie by Dundee.

Norma Short



Pte. Albert True 6th Battalion Royal West Kent Regiment (d.24th Apr 1945)

My uncle Albert was shot by the SS on the march to western Germany from Stalag XXB20. He was a POW from 1940 to his death 24/5/1945. He was shot with three other POWs; Jim Clarkin, Blackwatch, Ronald Jackson, Green Howards and Gordon Pollitt, Kings Regiment. We are very interested to hear from any one with knowledge of this incident and if anyone has news or knowledge of my uncle Albert True.

Marion Jackson



William Leonard Bowden Black Watch

My Father, William Leonard Bowden, was in the Black Watch and I know he was a POW and am pretty sure that firstly he was captured at Dunkirk and was then in Stalag XXB. I know he was a POW for the whole of the War and did not return home until 1945. Sadly, he died at the start of 1953 and I never asked my mother much about his war time experiences and suspect she might not have wanted to speak about them anyway having been widowed after only seven years of marriage. One thing I do have is a little New Testament Bible which is stamped with the Stalag number and had been presented by The Ecumenical Commission for The Chaplaincy Service to Prisoners of War and it then has a brief address in Geneva. I am assuming that all POWs were given these and that it was his

If anyone has any knowledge about his experience during the War I would be most grateful although I know now it is rather late to be asking!

Elizabeth N McGillivray



Robert Muir Malcolm Royal Artillery

My grandfather, Robert Muir Malcolm, was captured in the Second World War in 1940 at Dunkirk and marched to Stalag 20b in Poland until the end of the war when he returned home.

Duncan Malcolm



Pte. Frederick Charles Cator 7th Battalion Royal Norfolk Regiment

My uncle Fred Cator was taken captive and was a POW 18209 in Stalag XXB. Uncle Fred came back to the UK but I did not know anything about him until recently.

His brother, Corporal Herbert Robert Cator, was killed on 12th June 1940 after the last of the BEF had departed. As I understand it he died on the beach. Uncle Herbert is buried in the cemetery in Le Harve.

I would love any info regarding either of my uncles.

Jane



Pte. Firth Clarke West Yorkshire Regiment

Pte. Firth Clarke was captured early in the war and held prisoner through to the end. He was held in Stalag XXB. He rarely spoke of his time there, but on occasions told of stealing sugar hidden in a drum after a concert and getting German guards to help lift it as it was too heavy, of having shrapnel removed from his leg/ankle by German doctors, of walking home through Poland and refusing to remove his boots in case he was never able to get them back on. He was fond of boxing and gambling.

This second picture is of Firth at Stalag XXb (he did spend a short while in XXA before being moved to XXB)

Firth after the war (sadly he died in 1960) – he had had time to recover from the weight loss caused by walking home through Poland, so I guess the picture is about 1947/8?

If anyone recognises him, I would love to get in touch and find out more.

Steve Clarke



Pte. Derek Stephen Palmer 7th Battalion Royal Warwicksshire Regiment

My father, Derek Palmer from Birmingham, was a Private in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment joining up in April 1939. He was part of the BEF and his unit part of 7th Battalion, who I believe entered Belgium on the 19th /20th May and fought a rearguard action on the Ypres/Comines canal alongside the 48th Division and the Wilts and a Scottish regiment. His c/o was Captain Hunt who was killed at some point during the action. He was taken prisoner on about the 28th May, and marched through the Low Countries, (a Dutch family managed to take his name, rank & number to let people know he was still alive. They wrote to him throughout his captivity and remained friends for many years) finishing up in Poland Stalag XXB where he remained despite, at least, one unsuccessful escape attempt.

He took part in the 'Death March', during which time he was so ill he couldn't walk due to a poisoned leg and owes his survival to his friend Alf Lane who carried him on his back, so that he wouldn't be shot by the guards. They were liberated first by the Russians, whose Doctor operated on my father's leg with a razor blade. The Americans arrived and after some confusion as to who was claiming which allies, they flew my father home to hospital in the UK.

He spoke very little of his time in prison camp, but I was named after a Polish family's daughter who hid him during an escape attempt. He remained a close friend of Alf Lane for the rest of his life. My father was one of the most delightful, kind and witty man you could wish to meet. I never liked to ask him any questions because I didn't wish to bring back painful memories, but I would be grateful if anybody has any information about the Royal Warwicks actions at that period or remember him or Alf Lane.

Erika Williams



Rfm. Arther George Wadner Kings Royal Rifle Corps

Unfortunately, I have no further information regarding my late Grandfather but would love to know more. I do know he took place in the Death March. I always thought he was at Stalag 19a but according to prisoners of war records online it states he was at 20b

Editors Note: The POW records only record a single camp, that which the man was in at the time the list was made in 1945. Many men had been held in other camps also.

Mark Wadner



Pte. Ronald George Beech Northamptonshire Regiment

My great uncle, Ron Beech, was captured at Ypres around 1940-41 just after finding the body of his 'old mate' 'Ginger' having been shot moments beforehand. I don't know a great deal about his story nor do I have any photos and if anyone has any information etc. on him I would love to hear from you. I know that he was held for around 3 years at Stalag XX-B Malbork in Poland and his prisoner number was 12560.

He was of medium height with a stocky build and the only distinguishing feature that I know of was a Bayonet like wound on one hand (the back and the palm). He was born on 8 July 1918 and passed away in Northampton General Hospital in 1981. I never really knew him but have heard bits and bobs about him over the years and wanted to share what little I did know of him as I'm extremely proud of what he and his brothers did for their country back then.

Dave Denton



Gnr. Thomas Wilson Royal Artillery

My late Dad, Thomas Wilson lived and died in the City of Durham. He must have joined up in London because he was working down there I think in the Grosvenor Square area, other wise he might have been in the Durham Regiment, the DLI like my Granddad in WW1. I’m sure he said he was Kings Troupe R H A. I have most of his Army papers but nothing to tell me where or when he was taken, or his Battery. Dad always said that he was taken prisoner near Dunkirk, he said some thing about escorting Queen or Princess Willamina and his Regiment being all taken prisoner there. The CO said to destroy every thing before they surrendered (I just do not know). He was then marched all over, until they reached a POW Camp XXB. His POW Number was 5536.

Dad had 2 tattoos on his arms one of Edith Cavil and the other Florence Nightingale.

My Dad looking the wrong way and one one of these he has his long riding boots I can only think that these were taken in there Unit form up, before they left for France

the German people are from the farm that he worked on.

In early 1960 my Dad developed a brain tumour every one said it could have been from the time in the prison camps, he did recover and lived untill 1980's. But after the brain operation he lost a good bit of his memory and I never really got to the bottom of his POW life. He did say that he escaped some where near Hoene and he said he knew about Belson, he did say that within a few days they were flown to England

He was in Bulford Camp, some time there he was knocked of his bike by a truck at night they sent him to Halifax General Hospital, R&R I suppose it was whilst there he met my mam, Stella, she was visiting her brother and my dad saw her photo on his locker and told him that she is a bonny girl. And the rest is history. They got married and I was born.

My Mam has her right hand on the right shoulder of the girl in front.

Stewart Wilson



Pte. Joseph Jerome Deponio Royal Artillery

My Grandfather, Joseph Deponio from North Wales, was of Italian descent and became a gunner with the Royal Artillery. He was captured shortly after landing in France when he was driving a lorry full of officers away from the front line. They rounded a corner and drove straight into a German ambush. He was marched to Poland and stayed there for the whole war. He played guitar, but was so tired from days of marching that he threw his guitar over a hedge because he simply couldn't carry it any more.

He was at Stalag XXB for the whole time, although he said he did escape often so that he would be put to hard labour where you got extra food. One time he escaped with a couple of friends... he is no longer alive to ask, but I am pretty certain that their names were Bill Williams and Frank Nuttall. They were walking through deep snow and were exhausted and the guards were taking their time re-capturing them. One of these two couldn't go on and urged my grandfather and the other chap to carry on without him. Apparently my grandfather carried him until they were captured shortly afterwards and thanked him later as he simply would have died that day.

He learnt fluent German and exchanged things with the guards for extra fags or other bits and bobs. His knowledge of German came in very handy with my homework! He also mentioned another chap, I think he was a Frenchman, named Felix - (or that may have been his surname) and they exchanged letters after the war. After the war, he arrived somewhere in Sussex or Hampshire and was stationed in or near the small Sussex village of Billingshurst. The details are unclear, but I assume he was waiting to be demobbed or something like that and return to his hometown near Rhyl, North wales. However, whilst there, he met Marjorie Gravett and married her and settled in Sussex. He sadly died in 1996 aged 77 from cancer.

I have always been interested in his war story, although he rarely talked about it, and I got the feeling that he saw and went through some terrible things. My Mum says as a young child she can remember him sitting staring into the fire with tears rolling down his face silently. I would like to hear from anyone who knew Joseph, or Bill or Frank. I think one of them was actually writing a book, but I haven't a clue where they live, or if they have since died. My grandfather would be nearly 93 now, as would they, but if by small chance they, or their children or grandchildren stumble across this memoir, then please get in touch.

Claire Eldred



Pte. James Hoey Black Watch

My Dad was a prisoner of war during WW11 at Stalag 20b, Marienburg or so we thought. There are some stories that say it wasn’t in Marienburg but in Willenburg. His name was Private James Hoey, he was in The Black Watch. I wish I had asked him questions when he talked about it. Unfortunately, he died in 1999 and I am trying to research as much about him as I can. So if anyone knew my Dad or can tell me when and where he was captured or knew of anyone who served with him, I'd love to hear from you.

Janette Lee



Pte. Thomas Parker "Jim" Smith Black Watch

My Dad, Thomas Smith was held at Stalag XXB but like many did not talk about it much. He was wounded by a grenade so probably spent some time in medical care, loosing the sight in his right eye and wounds to right arm and leg He did tell some funny stories like the one about the potato that made noises.... familiar to anyone?

Tricia Anderson



L/Cpl. Wilfred Williams Royal Signals

Our father, Wilfred Williams, Royal Signals Army No 2328793 was at Stalag XXb. He was a prisoner of war from June 1940 to May 1945. In his later years he told us some of what had happened to him. Dad was an office boy working in a hospital in Portsmouth. He wanted a choice, not be drafted into the P B I (poor bloody infantry) so joined up and was put into the Signals Corp. All the British equipment was old, no tanks. After the First World War disarmament was the way of most of the world, but the Germans had the principle of ‘guns before butter’. The Signals Corp had wireless trucks but instead of having the proper radio equipment in them, they had a lot of cricket equipment, games etc. They thought the war would be over soon. In 1940 he was near a beach with cliffs at St Valery-en-Caux near Calais as rear guard as the 51st Highland Division was being chased down the coast. Their original orders were to ‘Hold the line’, but then came the order ‘Every man for himself!’ and to dismantle rifles so they could not be used by the enemy, but the guns were from the 1914 war anyway.

It was desperate. His company was surrounded at gunpoint by Germans. Eventually with thousands of other British, French, Dutch and Belgians they were marched from France to Holland, living on the occasional loaf or whatever they could find in the fields or hedges.

In Holland the POW's were loaded onto barges with no facilities for five days, until reaching Germany where they were put onto trains. The carriages said ‘8 horses or 40 men’, but 100 men were put in each. There was little water or food, and just a 3 feet by six inch opening where men took turns to stand. In Poland they were taken to the prison camp Marienburg Stalag XXb. Dad told us, ‘Everyone was suffering alike. They were a good lot of lads and relieved to be alive, to live through another day. Some comedians had a sense of humour. They were never overfed. It kept you down.

Lousy, covered completely with lice. In the delousing chambers/showers it just brought the young eggs out. Clothes would come off and be boiled and cooked. We had to walk through the water, no soap or towels. By the time you got back to camp all the lice were back again.

People were moved from camp to camp. It was boring and rotten. There was day after day of lice, scratching and no food. If there was bread, you ate it. Some saved it in pieces for breakfast/lunch/dinner, others ate it immediately. ‘ The friends he refers to in his account are Frank Tayler, Gordon Gibson (Gibby). He also mentions ‘Double’ (liked 2 food portions), Jake Porter (cockney) and Andy Anderson. At Stalag XXb he was sent to work in a factory for 3 months during the beet harvest, doing 12 hour shifts. The beets were cooked in eight big boilers. He had to open the boilers at the bottom to empty them of the cooked beets, all hot and wet, then closed them up to refill. He suffered with painful, cracked skin on his hands for the rest of his life as a result of this. Back at camp they were starving and bitterly cold. Dad collapsed and was marched off to a hospital by a German soldier, having to walk in the gutter, was given a ‘pick-me-up’ and then walked back to camp having lost his clothes but in a long Polish army overcoat. On the footpath Poles stuffed things in his pockets, cigarettes, hard buns. One job was to get sand for rail works. They were on narrow tracks, shovelling sand. One day all the sand slipped and two chaps died. A New Zealander officer who led the funeral told the POWs the latest news from the outside world. Dad volunteered for a farm. The first farmer was a ‘typical’ Prussian and did not want English prisoners saying they were trouble and would not work. They were then taken to another farm under Herr Johst, who was remembered as being important as he had a vehicle with rubber tyres. Ten of the lads were there from November 1941 to February 1945, all survived. At the farm the granary was destroyed and extra hands came in, in the form of Ukranian civilian POWs who brought whisky and a radio, so they heard the news that Singapore had fallen to the Japanese. When the farmer was away the Polish housekeeper let Dad in to listen to the radio and he heard ‘ITMA’ (It’s that man again – Tommy Handley). He was nearly caught coming back and had to dive into a ditch, a hairy moment, no fun at the time. He reported that all the Germans were different, some friendly, some not. In early 1945 the invasion was succeeding. Dad and his mates were told that they must move out. On 12 February they had to leave hurriedly because the Russians were coming. They picked up what they could carry and were marched from Poland across N Germany. Now we know that the troops were used as pawns by the Germans. They walked for 3 months living off the fields with no washing facilities anywhere, heading closer to the war activity. On 5 May 1945, still marching, US vehicles came over the horizon. The Germans put down their weapons and the US soldiers rounded everyone up. The US soldiers gave out cigarettes and candies. Vehicles took people to camps – with food! His group (in rags but with food) was put in a Lancaster bomber. It had no seats or weapons, just shells and gun towers in the middle and tail. They took turns to view the devastation. They flew over Essen and saw the damaged towns with white sheets hanging from the windows – surrender. They landed in Beaconsfield and were showered, given new underwear, a uniform and a meal. There was a show from the Folies Bergere and every chair had a copy of the Daily Express. Dad remembers black singer Josephine Baker stroking the hair on the back of the soldiers’ necks. He was given money and a railway pass, put onto a lorry to London and dropped off at Waterloo Station. He sent a telegram to his parents saying he was coming home. When he arrived at his parents’ home in Portsmouth his mother was crying with relief as his brother had arrived home from the Navy that same day. The telegram arrived three days later. Dad told us,”For me, the war was really over”. At the age of 80, in 1996, Dad went with his wartime pals Frank Tayler and Gibby back to Poland. They hired a car and visited the old buildings in Gdansk and looked for the farm they had been on. They found the house of Mr Klein, who had been the leading farm hand, and they found the house of Herr Johst. They remembered where the concentration camp they had been in was, and the striped uniforms of the Jews and dissidents. All they saw of the area they knew was run down, just grass and mature trees. They met a farmer who said that there had been a transformer and houses there, which were blown up by the Russians. The three old soldiers were given strawberries and a red rose each by the farmer’s wife, which Dad brought back to Mum. Wilfred Williams 16 July 1916 – 23 October 2009

Claire Williams



Pte. Jack Lionel Wallis Royal West Kent Regiment

My Father, Jack Lionel Wallis, was captured in Dunkirk in May 1940 and was POW in Stalag XXa and XXb from 1940 to 1944. He did not like to talk to us about it very much as it never left him like so many others I have read about on these pages. He learned to play the piano accordian while he was in the camp and he made a tapestry of a bowl of flowers which was very good. He did tell us how they had to march such a long way and how sometimes they only had cabbage water to keep going with. My Father eventually got TB and had to be repatriated in 1944 on a Swedish ship called the "Gripsholm" and was very lucky to survive. A few years after the war he went and found the doctor who treated him to thank him.

In the 1970's he went on a trip with the British Legion back there but he wished after he had not gone as it brought back so many memories and he went through a depressive time but recovered from it. Years went by and Dad was walking his dog along Eastbourne seafront when he stopped to speak to a stranger they got talking and the stranger said his uncle was also a prisoner of war in Poland his name is Jack Killick then Dad butted in and said "I remember him". Anyway, the nephew arranged for them both to meet which they did after 64 years. The local newspaper did a story on it which was nice.

Sadly my dad died 3 months after that. I have since been to the British Red Cross in London and found a picture of dad playing with a band in the POW journal which they allow you to search through. I have all the letters which his father wrote to him while he was in the camp.

Linda Fielder



Pte. Henry William John Lavender East Kent Regiment

My late father Henry Lavender served with the Buff's (East Kent Regiment) I'm trying to find out any information about his military back ground and whether he was awarded any campain medals whilst he served in his Regiment during his time in the Army. I have collated some brief information on line about his military career and also that he may have been a POW duering the Second World War and that he may have been in a POW camp in Poland (Stalag xxa and XXb). However, I have no information what happend after he was liberated and demobed from the Army at the end of the Second World War. I presume that he returned back to his parent's home in Wales. His last known address I have for him is where he settled down into civillan life is where I was born which is 68 Belasis Avenue, Haverton Hill, Billingham, Teeside. But sadly he passed away in 1960. I can only just briefly remember him as I was very young when he passed away and it would be nice to remember him by and to know that he served his country.

Mr P. Lavender



Pte. Ernest Arthur Elvin No.8 CRU Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers

My father, Ernie Elvin, was captured at Dunkirk and eventually found himself in Stalag XXB - after a terrible journey, mostly on foot. He spent 5 years in this camp being employed in a brickyard, a saw mill and a farm. He kept a small diary which he managed to bring home with him, and from that and the letters to my mother, my brother has produced a small booklet of his experiences. He never talked of them, but the experience never left him, as I recall he was always prone to make the most of every meal – licking his fingers after eating a cake to get all the crumbs up.

However, he speaks of times when he was able to be useful – as one of the older men, he became a ‘leader’ for the younger ones, and involved himself in the concert parties – being used to playing instruments and reading music. He speaks of the fun enjoyed at setting up the stage and the non stop variety concert, which was enjoyed by all. He also recalled the hardships of little food and how the Red Cross parcels kept them going. He spoke of Peter Lister, who was with him for part of his time in Stalag XXB.

The last letter home was written in November 44. From then on he was on the long march. Terrible suffering, frost bite and starving hungry. Falling out for a day or so to hide in a barn – being cared for by a kind farming family. Later joining the column again. Eventually he records: "14th April 1945 10am. The wonderful news – we are free. Thank God. 3pm meet the American column at Wittinghen and sleep in a house! Next day breakfast on raw eggs – thousands of them! From here it is homeward bound."

Should anyone remember my father, or have heard of any reference to him, I would love to hear from you.

Valerie Jones



L/Bdr. Jack "Nipper" Charlesworth Royal Artillery

My dad, Jack, joined up 1939 and one amusing tale was when the dinner gong went, he asked his Sergeant "whats the gong for?" - "It's dinner time Charlesworth" was the reply, to this my dad said ""e had dinner yesterday, Sunday" to be answered, "We have dinner everyday in the army, Charlesworth".

Jack was taken prisoner at Dunkirk, apparently dismantling some communication set up. He was sent to Stalag XXb at Marienburg where he worked on a farm as a shepherd. His nickname was Nipper as he was 5ft 5". He used to tell a tale that he learnt German from a boot polish tin and him and his mates would take the "mick" out of the guards.

Malcolm Charlesworth



Robert Woods 7th Btn. Royal Norfolk Regiment

My father, Robert Woods, was a prisoner of war in Stalag XXA and Stalag XXB. He was captured at St Valerie 12/6/1940 and arrived Stalag XXA (2A) 11/7/1940 He was transferred to Stalag XXB on 4/4/1943. I have several photos of him and colleagues in the camps including two which you have up on your website which must have been posted by someone else, it shows him in a band. I also have a photo with a few addresses and names on the back (difficult to make out but I am trying to research them) I am keen to find out more about his part in the Battle of St Valerie and his time in prisoner of war camps. He was on the death march back away from the advancing Russian and American forces and I believe he was liberated by the Russians. He was in the Royal Norfolk 7th Battalion. If you know of anybody who might be able to shed more light on his time during the war I would be grateful to hear from you.

Chris Woods



Pte. Thomas Sydney Down East Surrey Regiment

My father-in-law was Private Sydney Thomas Down, East Surrey Regiment POW number 12463. Sydney was captured and spent 1 year in Stalag XXA then was transferred to XXB for the duration of the war. Sydney died in 1947. Anyone who knew of him and could tell us anything about him we would love you to get in contact.

Peggy Down



Pte. John Martin Queen's Royal West Surrey Regiment

My father, John Martin, was a prisoner in Stalag XXB, POW No 6554. He was called up in September 1939 and captured in May 1940, near Amiens in France I believe. I am also in possession of a complete list of places marched to on the Great March, including the English interpretation of these names, very humorous. I believe he had a great sidekick called Tommy Rawson from Manchester. Any information would be gratefully received.

Sandra Linger



Dvr. Jack Symonds Royal Army Service Corps

My father, Jack Symonds, was a prisoner of war in Stalag XXB. Unfortunately, he passed away on 30th December last year aged 96 and it is only recently that I began to do some further research on his wartime experiences. I guess this was prompted by the recent release of detailed information on British Army Prisoners of War 1939-1945. From this information, which confirmed his prison camp as Stalag XXB, on the Wartime Memories website there is a photograph of Harry Daniels, in which I am as certain as I can be also has a picture of my father. He is second from the right as you look at the photograph. I sent an email to Patricia Daniels (daughter of Harry). Unfortunately, the email has been returned to me as 'undeliverable', if Patricia reads this I would love to hear from you

His prison number was 15626 and he had been captured at St. Valery in France when the whole of the 51st Highland Division was captured. Father was a driver in the Royal Army Service Corps. He always told us that they were relatively well looked after and was eternally grateful for the tremendous work of the Red Cross. He also told us that the reason for their reasonable treatment was that the Germans wished to have some 'model' prisons that could be inspected by the Red Cross and others in order to divert attention away from the extermination camps, which as you will know were not very far away. You can imagine how much I wish I had this information to hand when father was still alive and to be able to show him the photographs and to be able to expand what we already knew. Dad was born in Liverpool and lived there all his life.

David Symonds



Pte. Edward George Cooke Worcestershire Regiment

My dad, Edward George Cooke, was a private in the Second World War. He was taken prisoner at Dunkirk along with his brother, Ron, both in the Worcestershire Regiment. Dad was held at Marienburg Poland. POW 11183. Stalag XXB Marlbruck E Prussia. They both survived the Camps.

Anne Piff



Dvr. Robert Beck Royal Army Service Corps

My father, Robert Beck was held in POW camp Stalag XXB. He was a driver in the RASC and captured in the rearguard around Dunkirk. We know that he worked on surrounding farms. He was among those that escaped before the evacuation of the camp in 1945 and taken in by the Russians. My understanding is that he was not happy with his treatment by the Russians and he was actually only repatriated many months after his colleagues who were marched back into Germany and liberated by the Americans. He was from Glasgow and emigrated to Australia in 1958 only to drown unfortunately in 1962.

David Beck



Winston Massey Queens Royal Regiment

My father, Winston Massey of the Queens Royal Regiment was captured in 1940 and was held in the POW camp Stalag XXB until the end of the war.

Kathleen Lampard



Henry Yalden Royal Artillery

My father Harry Yalden was sent to France to fight the Germans who were moving in from Belguim in 1940. He was part of the Artillery Regiment. They fought on the beaches of Dunkirk until they ran out of ammo. They were captured and sent on a death march to Poland were he was a prisoner of war for 5 years at Stalag xxb his number was 14 on the records. He later escaped with others and was found by Americans hiding out in a barn. If anybody has any information a family mentioning him, records of him I would very much appreciate it. He died in 1986 and would never talk about his ordeal when he was alive. My Dad was a little guy 5ft 4in reddish blond hair blues eyes and stocky and a jokester who loved to draw.

Sandy Earlywine



Pte. John Quinn Highland Light Infantry

My father, John Quinn was a prisoner of war in the camp Stalag XXB in Malbork, Poland. Does anyone know or remember him?

Catherine



L/Cpl Thomas Dobbins "Tom" Russell 2 Bn Seaforth Highlanders

My father, Tom Russell, served in the Seaforth Highlanders from around 1933 and was based at Dover Castle before the war, where he met my mother.He was captured at St. Valery, France in 1940 and forced to march to Stalag XXB in Poland where he remained until 1945. He never spoke about his time there except that he used to drive the "Countess" in a pony and trap to the village for groceries.

Unfortunatly, my father passed away in 1990 but I am planning a visit to the POW site in June 2013 and would appreciate any info before I go.

I also served in his regiment but I am greatly saddened by the decimation of these famous Scottish regiments.

It would be nice if anyone remembered my father, but of course there has been a long period of time passed and a lot of these brave men have now passed on.

John Russell



Pte. George Arthur Wilson 9th Battalion Manchester Regiment

My grandfather George Arthur Wilson, who I believe would have gone just by Arthur, was in the 9th Battalion of the Manchester Regiment. Grandad Arthur was a machine gunner who was captured at Dunkirk and made to walk to his POW camp. My Dad thought it was Stalag XX-A however, I believe now that it is Stalag XX-B in Malbork/Marienburg. We know very little about him in general. He died in 1979 before I was born. Any information would be very much appreciated.

Erika Wilson



Pte. Frank Belgium Mercer Kings Royal Rifles Corps

My dad is in the top row far left.

Frank is bottom row far right

Frank Mercer my father died in 1995, sorting through his effects I found two photos. At first I thought they were from a training camp until I saw the address. His middle name was 'Belgium' as in the Country as his father (another Frank) was there in WW1 when he was born. His regiment was the Kings Royal Rifles, his P.O.W. number from the address side of card appears to be 7732. He did say the actor Sam Kydd was in the same camp. He spoke very little of his time as a P.O.W, but I do recall him saying he was captured at or near Dunkirk and was taken to Poland in a way that involved a lot of walking. In the late sixties when I was about 18, I went on a charity walk from Croydon to Brighton, overnight. I got back late next day and collapsed in a chair. I said "I made it dad, 49 miles!" He did not even look up from his paper but said "Huh, you want to try walking to Poland!". I also found his bank book, opened in June 1945, the first (and only) deposit was a cheque for £337, a large amount in those days. I realise this was his wartime back pay. It turns out he did not claim his medals, probably just glad it was all over and get back to normal life. I did contact the army medal unit and got them.

Frank Mercer



Walter Frost 2nd Dragoon Guards (Queen's Bays)

My granddad, Walter Frost, was captured in May 1940. He was in Thorn prison camp and then Marienburg. He was from Gateshead.

Kev Hedley



L/Cpl. James Walker McLaren Cameron Higlanders

My father, James McLaren was captured on 27/5/1940 at La Basse, France. He was sent to Stalag XXA (Thorn) from 9/6/1940 - 19/4/1941. He was then transferred to Stalag XXB from 19/4/1941 - 24/1/1945. During his time in the camps he worked at Marienwerder 23/4/1941 - 2/3/1943 (Farm), Rehof 16/3/1943 - 18/4/1944 (Farm) and Mierua 20/4/1944 - 24/1/1945 (Smithy Work). He was then forced to go on the long march. During his time working on the farms he became very friendly with a young Polish girl called Stefania Drews. Soon after the war he applied for permission to bring Stefania to Britain and he married her. They went on to have four children, three girls and one boy.

Stuart McLaren



Pte. Patrick Connell Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry

Paddy Connell joined the DCLI in 1932. He was taken prisoner in 1940 in Belgium. I think he was sent to Stalag XXb. Prior to this he was in India and boxed for the RE.

Peter Connell



Pte. Percy Frederick George King 1st Btn. Royal West Kent Regiment

My dad, Percy King, known as Fred King, was captured at Dunkirk. He was part of the rear guard holding up the German advance so more soldiers could get off back to Blighty. He was taken to Stalag 13. He made friends with a Polish man called Konrad Kowalski and wrote to each other after the war. He, like many of that time, did not want to speak of all the horrors that I imagine went on. When asked he just said "You don't want to know" but, he did say all he had to eat was one slice of dried bread a day a cup of watery soup a week to live on hence he came home bones wrapped in skin. He spent 5 years as a POW liberated in 1945. It was hard times in the POW camp was all he would say. He was six foot tall 'till he came home then he looked more like four foot tall. It must have been hell in those dark days. I'm only glad that I did not have to go through anything like that. I feel for all those POW's that spent time in that place and more so for the ones that died there. God rest their souls and all to those who came back as well.

If there are any relatives of Konrad Kowalski, a son or daughter or grandchild of Konrad's please get in touch, I would love to hear of anything you may have to offer i am trying to piece together my dad's life as he died in 1968 not leaving me much to go on you can get in touch on this site.

Raymond W. King



Fus. Alex McMullan Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers

Back of Another group Stalag XX B

Alex McMullen with a group at Stalag XXb

Postcard home from Stalag XXb

Alex McMullen with a group of POW's at Stalag XXb

Card from Stalag XXb with names

My uncle, Alex McMullan, was a member of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers with the BEF at the beginning of WW2. He was wounded and captured north of Dunkirk in 1940 and spent the remaining years of the war in a prison camp, either Stalag 3A or Stalag XX B.

Upon his release he returned to Northern Ireland but was killed in a shooting accident, at his home, in December 1946. He was 24 when he died. I have numerous photos and postcards at home and would like to share with others on this site. I doubt whether there will be anyone alive now who remembers him but any snippets would be welcome. I was only 2 years old when he died but have childhood memories of him and his bagpipes. He joined the Inniskillings with a friend of his, Freddie Wilkinson, as a piper when he was 17, Freddie was killed in the action where Alex was taken prisoner, or so I am led to believe.

David Gilbert



Pte. Thomas George Shipley Queens Own Cameron Highlanders

My late Uncle Thomas George Shipley served with The Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders. He was captured by the Germans and sent to Marienburg Stalag XXB His POW number 3960. He was originally from Glasgow. Does anyone have any information about him?

Dorothy



Gunner James Edward Jupp Royal Artillery

My father James Jupp was captured at Dunkirk. I have no details of what happened to him after that but he did end up in Stalag XX-B Malbork Poland. He said that he volunteered to go to a Horse Stud where they broke in the German Stallions. He claims to have escaped a couple of times but was recaptured. The last time he tells of escaping with fellow prisoner Harry Brough. They took 4 prized stallions and obtained passes and because my father could speak fluent German they kept moving along updating these passes. They rode from East Prussia to the River Elbe arriving at Wittenburg on the Western Front. At that point they met the Americans. Of course there was more to the story. This is a quick version of his escape but it made the newspapers in England on his arrival back home.

James Edward Jupp left England in 1959 on the Ship Fairsea as a ten pound pom to Australia with his wife and family. He passed away in 1987.I would love to contact anyone who might have heard of this story or might have further information.

Janine Petersen



Pte. Robert Alfred "Snowy " Wilson South Wales Borderers

My grandfather was Robert Alfred Wilson. He was a private in the South Wales Borderers, all I know is that he was caught at Dunkirk in June 1944 and was taken prisoner for the rest of the war. I do know that he was in Marienburg in Stalag xxb.

Alex Lewis



L/Cpl. Laurence Frank Brignall

I have a book written by my Grandad who was a prisoner of war in WWII which contains:

  • Arrival at Stalag XXA
  • Arriving at Dortmund - 10 days for registering
  • Life at Fort 12 the Balloon Hangar
  • A 40 man roadwork party

  • Life at fort 17 -
  • Time at POW hospital Fort 14 for a short time over winter
  • Roadwork party in an early summer
  • The mention of a man named Paddy Toner

  • Life at Fort 15 - winter 1941
  • Road job of spring 1942 working with rail lines and cutting in Steinfdorf. An amusing tale of 'green hat' and mentions Duggie Whitfiend from Dundee.
  • The time they were moved to Reisenberg Sugar Factory mentioning a Welshman called Roger Lewis whom he worked with til the end of '42

He was then moved a rest camp where he received parcels from a Mlle Legrand and became friends with Arther Waldren. An Iillness death in the camp is documented and how they played out a funeral how best they could. And also a play of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

He was then moved in in spring to Stalag XXB and did farmwork at Schlablau a lady called Alina took care of the soldiers very well. I have photographs of the farm party. Mentions a train line split the farm and Hitler's personal train passed through.

He was moved to an Altfelde sugar factory - and documents a story where a geordie man had his foot crushed. There is a photograph taken at Altfelde. Stories of making alcohol involving a man called 'Pudden' Walters and conceiling a prisoner called 'Kelly' for 4 months who was in hiding from the punishment camp. Marching back to Marienburg in 1945 arriving at Magdeberg, Annaberg and finaly being liberated by the Russians.

The entire book is too long to copy, however I'm happy to copy parts of it if the information is beneficial to people researching.

Suzi Rodrigues



Rfmn. Henry James Robinson King's Royal Rifle Corps

Harry Robinson is the tall one in the middle of the back row

My father, Henry James Robinson, known as Harry, was wounded with shrapnel in his leg and captured at Calais in 1939 . He was taken to Stalag 20B where, despite escaping at least once, he spent the rest of the war. He returned home to England in 1945 and emigrated to Australia around 1947. Very little has been heard of him since then which is why my story is fairly vague as he was not around to give me any details. If any one has any news of him, either in the camp or since I would dearly love to hear from them. I enclose a photo which I believe is from the camp. Harry is the tall one in the middle of the back row.

Patricia Burn



Pte. Denis Charles "Spud" Taylor Northamptonshire Regiment

Denis Charles Taylor served with the Northamptonshire Regiment during WW2 and was a POW in Stalag 20B Malbork Poland. His POW number was 12065. My father was a prisoner of war at stalag xxb (1940-45). He escaped on several occasions and was tortured by the Gestapo. They pierced his eardrums.




Alfred John Stevenson Royal East Kent Regiment

I never got the chance to meet my grandfather as he had passed away before I was born, but I was always told about him being captured as they headed to Dunkirk and then being marched to Poland, he lost several toes due to frostbite. While researching my family tree I discovered that he was a POW at Stalag 20b in Malbork, Poland. His name was Alfred John Stevenson of the Royal East Kent Regiment (the Buffs). He was in his late 30s when he was captured. Id love to find out more, where he was when he was captured, what he did when he was at the camp etc.

Claire Stevenson



L/Cpl. Walter Charles Blake Signals Regiment

Possibly like most fathers who endured the absolute horrors of war, my dad who was Wally Blake - POW No. 10196 at Stalag 20b, Marienburg maintained his silence and right up to his passing away in 1980, he said absolutely nothing of his experiences except that he flew home in a Lancaster Bomber. To this statement I assumed that at the end of the war he just hitched a ride home on whatever mode of transport was available but later learnt that he took part in the “Long March Home” and that after the war Churchill had instructed anything that could fly to be used to ferry the troops home.

The uncanny part of his detainment was that during the making of this excellent and for me highly informative programme concerning the dire plight of POWs, one scene showed a photo of happy free prisoners waiting transport home and perhaps somewhat spookily, out of this group I was immediately attracted to one particular individual who I am convinced was my dad. Thanks to modern technology this remarkable image was captured, framed and now takes pride of place in my house for, without the dogged determination of my dear Dad to return to his bride who he married only days before going off to war, I would not be writing this article.

Therefore, to him and the unwavering love and devotion of my mother during his incarceration and in particular to the Red Cross for eventually advising her that my Dad had been found alive and well as a POW in Poland, I am more than eternally grateful.

Deyrick Blake



Bmdr. George Henry Claw Royal Artillery

My Great Grandfather was called George Henry Claw and he was a prisoner of war at the Stalag XXb camp. He survived the war and died in 1972. I don't know much about his time there as he died before I was born but I am told that he refused his medals and became a pacifist. So if anyone has any information on him, I would be very grateful.

George



John Kendrick Royal Warwickshire Regiment

My Uncle John Kendrick was a prisoner of war at Stalag XXB. As far as we know he was captured at Dunkirk and spent the remainder of the war in the POW camp. He was in the Royal Warwickshires Regiment and their museum in Warwick (now called the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers museum) was very helpful in finding out information about where he was a POW and what his service (511823) and POW numbers (282) were. I would recommend them. I want to find out what battalion he was in and wonder if there is any quicker process than going via an army war records enquiry which I understand can take up to a year. I Would also love to know if anyone else has any information relating to him

Jacky Walters



Pte John Henry Handley Gloucestershire Regiment

My Grandfather was Jack Handley. From his service record and recent geneology studies I know that he was held in Stalag XXb. From family history passed down I know he may have been on the long march which took place from Jan-April 1945 when he may have been injured. My Mom said that he didn't talk much about the war but one friend said that he may have had in the camp emigrated to Australia after the end of the war.

I would love to find out more about my Grandfather as he sadly died of stomach cancer on 22nd November, 1966 5 years before I was born. After the war he was a postman in Dudley, West Midlands, he was survived by his wife Gladys and daughter Valerie, who piecing together fragments may have been named after the place where he was captured Saint Valery in France.

I would appreciate any help that anyone can give me or perhaps where to research further as i would like my children and grand children not to forget the sacrifices that these brave men gave to secure their future.

Yvonne Forrest



Sydney Bonner Royal Artillery

My father, Sydney Bonner, was taken prisoner in France at about the time of the Dunkirk evacuation and was a prisoner at Stalag XXb. His prison tattoo number was 7179. Early in 1945 he, together with thousands of others, set off on the Death March across Poland and Germany. He and the survivors of his party were met by Americans in April 1945 and was placed in what was, by then, a liberated concentration camp whilst awaiting repatriation to the U.K.

I am trying to trace his journey and specifically the exact position and name of the concentration camp that had been liberated by the U.S. Given that he had met Americans, I am assuming that he was liberated in central Germany rather than in the north. With the help of my mother, I am putting together an account of my father's experiences and would be grateful if anyone could shed some light on on the last few weeks/months of his time as POW.

If anyone can put any detail to the route taken by POWs from Stalag XXb to a camp newly liberated by American troups I would be most grateful. Once I have all the details to complete the account of my father's experiences, I can post it on the XXb section of the Wartime Memories Project.

Valerie Gorman



Pte. Ernest Arthur Elvin R.E.M.E.

I have in my possession over 100 letters my father, Ernest Elvin, sent home to his wife and son during his time as a POW in Stalag XXB. These have given us a marvellous insight into the happenings and life experience as a POW. Some of the stories he recalls about the way they entertained themselves really were quite ingenious. Lots of fun, dressing up and acting, singing and sharing in Church Services together. He spoke of the way they were so very grateful for the Red Cross parcels they received, and that they kept them going foodwise. Clearly they were very hungry at times, although he never actually voiced this, but spoke of looking forward to roast dinners and mum's cakes again. He also spoke of the good comradeship experienced between the men, how they would share their letters from home, just to help each other feel nearer to Blighty. He also spoke of the beautiful countryside around the camp, the spring flowers and the joy of laying on the grass in the summer and even being allowed to swim in a nearby river.

Last year I was privileged to visit the memorial to the Prisoners of Stalag XXB in Marlbork Municipal Cemetery. It was a tremendous experience, and one I was so very glad to have had.

Valerie Jones



Pte. Leslie Lee

My father Leslie Lee, spent 5 years as a POW in Poland - 1940 to 1945. Pictures that were sent to him by my mother were stamped Stalag XXB on the back. He was captured as part of the rear guard during the Dunkirk evacuation. Was part of the forced march in the winter of 1945. Few details are known as, like many others, he was reluctant to speak of his time in Poland. He did speak a little about the march and the terrible conditions, the lack of food and the cold. He also remembered that they slept in snowy fields and on the last day woke up in a barn to find that the German guards had all left and that the Americans were close by. They were liberated by the Americans later and he remembered being given food that he was unable to eat due to his being so malnourished. He was repatriated and hospitalized then returned to Hull to marry my mother in June 1946. Unfortunately he passed away at the age of 95 in December 2012 without ever opening up about this time of his life. I would love to find out more and am searching for more information about him.

Lynda Milter



Sgt. Charles Edward Turner East Yorkshire Yeomanry 5th Dragoon Guards

My father, Charles Turner was a Tank Commander from the East Yorkshire Regiment. he was captured 23 May 1940 in St Omer, and sent to Stalag XX/A 6 June 1940 prisoner number 776 in Oflag III/C. He was transferred to Stalag XX/B on 10 October 1941. He was transferred from XX/A on 16 September 1942 and held in Oflag III/C we have no records of his of his release etc, he attested into the TA in 1947 In Kingston upon Hull.

My Father would never talk about his time in the camps as he thought it was better to look to the future. We have a photo of him in the camp, but we don't know which one is him. My father died in May 1973 and I am trying to compose a life book for my children before I die. I would like any help of advice from anyone and will pass on any info I have.

James Turner



Pte. Anthony John McMahon Gloucestershire Regiment

My Uncle Tony McMahon is the chap on the left of the front row in the photo which Leonard Price is on the right of the front row. He was captured not far from Dunkirk where the Glosters and the Wiltshires were defending the line. He was in Stalag XXB and worked on a farm, the family wanted him to stay but he wanted to go home. He was on the death march and survived mainly because his Mother had sent him a pair of boots. He died when he was in his eighties, a bachelor.

Vanessa Killops



Fus. Robert Andrew Jamieson Northumberland Fusiliers

Robert Andrew Jamieson was a prisoner of war in Stalag 20b Marienburg Poland. His POW number was 5815 and his service number was 4268101. A Northumberland Fusilier, he originated from Alnwick Northumberland, where he died aged 38 while playing football.

We know very little about him, as he died so young. His children were too young to remember him and have never seen a photograph of him. If anyone can recall anything about him or happens to have a photo with him we would love to hear from you.




Pte. Philip Spall Leicestershire Regiment

When searching through my Mothers effects following her death, my sister found the enclosed photos of Private Philip Spall to whom we believe she was engaged in 1939. It appears he was captured, possibly at Dunkirk, and was POW. I have attached a portrait dated 1939, a POW group photo dated 1942 and a further group of 4 undated. My mother did not marry Philip so I do not know what became of him. Any information will be of great interest.

Tony Bailey



L/Sgt. William Albert Charles Matterface MID Royal Artillery

My dad, Bill Matterface was a soldier through and through, he was captured at Dunkirk and was on the long march to the concentration camp. He, from what he told us, was involved in the sport, getting the men involved in all sports and inter camp contests. He was MID for distinguished service, he never wanted the laurel leaf or his medals as he believed he was fighting to save the country and should not be rewarded for it. He was in Stalag XXA BAB 20 and captured for a good amount if the war, he never really spoke about the time before he was captured but told us stories of life inside the camp, how they entertained themselves with stage plays, baking cakes, making clothes, sport and much much more, he never did say where anything came from that was used in the making of the items they used. They suffered severe winters and many froze to death, they had rags on their feet when their boots fell apart and had to scrounge around for food and wood for a fire. He died on 11.11.1995 a very appropriate day.

Margaret Cheeseman



Pte. Vic Thurgood

I have just come across an old picture of my Uncle Vic Thurgood in a group photo in some woods, where he and the other prisoners had to work. The back of the picture, which is reproduced as a postcard, is marked Stalag XXB 324 Germany. I don't know very much at all about his life or conditions in this camp. They all look quite healthy in the photo, but I was told when I was a child that when he came home, he had serious problems - nightmares etcetera. The only thing I remember him saying was that one day two SS women paid a visit to the camp and one of the prisoners wolf-whistled them. The SS women pulled out their pistols and shot the man dead. If this was true, and I have no reason to doubt otherwise, no wonder he had mental health problems when he returned. I have enhanced the picture, taken out scratches and added the close up my uncle Vic at the top. Does anyone know him or where this camp was?

Peter Thurgood



Pte. Fred C. S. Vowles MID. 1st (Buckinghamshire) Battalion Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry

Fred Vowles was adopted by Greys WI, near Henley on Thames. He appears in the WI archives of Greys as "Fred" or "our prisoner of war". From 1943 until 1945 letters to and from Fred were documented, gift were sent, mainly hand knitted garments such as gloves and socks, but also cigarettes and a book on combustion engines. In July 1945 he visited Greys and was presented with a wallet and £11-5s. We know nothing more, except I have discovered that Fred was held in Stalag XXB for 5 years. If anyone knows anything about Fred Vowles, we would be very grateful.

Merryl Roberts



Gnr. Roy Herbert Godfrey Royal Artillery

My late dad Roy Herbert Godfrey kept a diary during the war and in it he wrote:- On the 10th may 1940 Germany broke through Belgium and Holland, we were told to evacuate Arleux on thursday 16th may which we did, but we went the wrong way into trouble instead of out of it. We met the enemy for the first time on Monday 20th May, tanks etc, made a break for it with 3 others but it was no use, we were captured on Thursday 23rd May. Then for 17 days we had to march on average 30 kilometres a day without food, arriving at a place called Thorn in Poland on Saturday 9th June. The last 2 1/2 days spent in a railway truck, not being let out at all, our conditions by this time were very bad, we were so weak that climbing upstairs was hard work. Now we were fed reasonably well, but of course we didn't get enough 1/5th of a loaf of bread and a bowl of soup. Once we got out during the day we got a certain amount of bread etc. from the Poles. Of course our health picked up a bit, then on the 22nd August 1940 we went to Berlin as printers (my dad's job before the war) and stayed there for 24 days, arriving back at Thorn on Tuesday 27th September without doing any printing. Berlin was bombed every night we were there. Then on Friday 4th October we left Thorn again on a working party arriving at a place called Guttowitz to find it was a camp that was just being built. October 29th, been at Guttowitz over 3 weeks, the food is improving a little, any way it's better than Stalag, we have 2 tier beds to sleep in and are fairly comfortable in our quarters. Haven't had a Red Cross parcel for 5 weeks now, keep expecting it every day. We haven't started regular work yet,the camp is nearly finished being built yet.

Sunday 3rd November 1940, the bad weather seems to have started, anyway it's pouring with rain at present, it's been cold for a week (very cold). We got a Red Cross issue last Wednesday, 1 individual parcel between 9 men.

Friday 3rd January 1941 terrible cold over 30 below zero.

Monday 13th January we had to do 2 hours punishment drill because someone threw a snowball and hit the Commandant.

Tuesday 3rd June 1941 spent a day travelling to a place called Marienwerder, billeted in a barracks, 25 of us and 25 French.

Sunday 15th June been here nearly 2 weeks,the French have gone and 25 more men from Guttowitz have arrived. Tuesday 1st July 20 more men from Guttowitz arrive making 90 in total.

1942 Monday 19th October sent to work at Reisenburg sugar facgtory.

1943 Tuesday 5th January went to Stalag Willenburg.

Monday 11th january 14 of us went to work on a farm near Reisenburg.

As far as I know my dad spent the rest of the war working on the farm.

Bridget Briggs



L/Cpl. Duncan Macfarlane Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) (d.13th Oct 1943)

My great uncle, Duncan Macfarlane was captured near St Valery en Caux and was held prisoner in Stalag XXB, Poland. He sent home two letters which I have copies of. He died in the camp in October 1943. If anyone has any information or photographs of him I would love to hear from you. He is buried in Malbork Commonwealth War Cemetery, Malbork, Poland.

Anne Brown



Pte. Joseph Knight Bedfordshire & Hertfordshire Regiment

My Uncle Joe was imprisoned at Stalag XXB 206 and ran an orchestra: Joseph Knight and his Orchestra. In June 1942 the '206 Players' put on two one act plays. The orchestra was involved. I'd be interested to know if anybody has more information.

Geoff Clack



Sgt. Andrew Hall Smith 13th Field Hygene Section Royal Army Medical Corps

On 12th of Jun 1940 Sgt Andrew Hall Smith was at St Valerie and was taken POW, (POW No. 18007). He arrived at Stalag XXA, Thorn, Germany on 10th of July 1940. He was sent to Stalag XXB Marienburg on 9th of October 1941 and back to Stalag XXA on 13th of October 1943. He was repatriated on 13th of October 1944

James Smith



Tpr. Ronald Victor Page East Riding Yeomanry

My father, Ronald Victor Page, lives with us in North Bay, Ontario. He wrote a book about his wartime experiences, "European Tour, 1939-1945". It was printed in a very limited edition (12 copies; one for each family member). There is a lot more to his story than he has revealed in his book. He has told us many humorous stories and some very sad one's since he finished the book in 1997. We are trying to encourage him to document more of his experiences and have the book re-written with our help.

Ron, a member of the East Riding Yeomanry, was taken prisoner near Watou, Belgium on 30th of May 1940. After six weeks of being marched around France and then following a long train ride, he ended up at Stalag XXA, Thorn. About a month later his group was split up and he was transferred to Stalag XXB farm / labour camps, where he stayed for the next few years. On 14th Jan 1945, his group left Deutsch Eylau on foot on a journey through Poland and Germany. The estimated 800 mile march ended near Bitterfeld, Germany, on 25th of April 1945, when they met up with US forces. Ron sketched out the general route they took. Ron would enjoy hearing from any old comrades who may have taken "the tour' with him.

Gerry Page



Gnr. Hugh Cameron Royal Artillery

My father Hugh Cameron enlisted in the Royal Artillery on 3rd February 1939. He was posted to France with the British forces and was captured at Dunkirk. He was transferred to Poland and ended up in Stalag XXB. I have a number of photographs taken during his time there.




Gnr. George Charles Bates 2nd Search Light Regiment Royal Artillery

Farm which was Workcamp 299/34 at  Wesseln

Lancaster M NG168

Signatures of Lancaster Crew

My father George Bates was captured near Frevent on 20th May 1940 as the German spearhead advanced towards the coast. He arrived at Stalag XXB via XXIA, XXIB and XXIC on 14th June 1941. Dad spent much of his time working on a farm at Workcamp 299 (later re-numbered Workcamp 34) at Wesseln, which I understand is now known as Lelkowo. I have a photo of dad with his fellow prisoners on the farm and another of the farm itself which was taken by a local Polish man.

Dad took part in the long march in the winter of 1945 and was eventually liberated by the Americans and flown home to England from Reims to Ford Aerodrome by Lancaster flown by a mixed English and Canadian aircrew on 10th May 1945. There is a photo of the Lancaster given to my dad by the crew and signed on the back. If anyone recognises any of the men in the photo and would like a copy or has any information about the farm please let me know.

David Bates



L/Cpl. John Victor Jones Royal Aemy Service Cpros

My father John Victor Jones was a driver in the RASC. He was captured in 1940 and marched etc to pow camp Stalag xxb. He was there until the longest march. My father like many other pow's never spoke of the times he spent here. I would like to get in touch with a friend of his that could tell me anything about the days they spent there. It's always been on my mind since my late father past away in 1988. My father is on bottom row, 7th from the left.

David Jones



Thomas Winship 5th Btn. East Yorkshire Regiment

My grandfather, Thomas Winship, sadly deceased before I was born, was captured pre-Dunkirk and marched to Stalag XXB. He was a member of the East Yorkshire Regiment, possibly 5th and was born in Hull.

I'm trying to gather as much information as I can, any information would be greatly welcomed.

Mark Derbyshire



George Henry Bowman Durham Light Infantry

My father, George Henry Bowman, was a POW at Stalag XXB (he was part of the British Expeditionary Force captured at Dunkirk). He was a regular soldier in the Durham Light Infantry. In the photograph of him in Stalag XXB, he is 4th from the right in the middle row. I would be delighted if anyone recognised him. He was also one of those who survived the long march, but didn't talk much about any of his wartime experiences, which I gather is a common trait.

Tony Bowman



L/Cpl. Winston "Ray" Massey Queens Royal Surrey Regiment

My grandfather, L/Cpl Winston Massey (a.k.a. Ray), 6084900 , POW No. 3036 was with the Queens Royal Regiment (West Surrey) serving in Shanghai [Jan 1934 - Nov 1934], Hindustan and Afghanistan. He had 14 years service abroad, and returned to England with two weeks R&R before engaging in WWII.

My Grandfather was captured in France performing rear guard action for the evacuation of the 1st BEF, and was a very early POW from 1940-1945, reported missing on the 20th May 1940, and reported as POW 31st May 1940.

Ray served on the Maginot line. As a Prisoner of the Germans, he faced his most trying time and survived through his resourcefulness. "We were taken to Danzig in Poland and a German SS man asked me what my trade was and I said I was a farmer, even though I had never been on a farm in my life" Ray said.

In the final days of the war Ray was rounded up with other prisoners of war and forced to face the tough march from Poland back to Germany. "I lost a lot of my friends on that march. We didn't have any food," he said.

One of the brightest moments in Ray's military history was when American planes flew over Berlin at the end of the war, signalling to prisoners their imminent release from the camp. The light soon faded for Ray though, as he was so ill he blacked out and could remember no more until he awoke in a military hospital in England" [Blacktown Advocate Extracts]. In later recollections he mentioned that upon liberation by the Americans, they had nothing to feed the prisoners, except rotten potato peelings. Which was possibly why he was so sick.

I have managed to locate war crime documents (from Kew) relating to the forced march from Poland to Germany, which I will endeavour to transcribe and make available. Kew WO0309-34 which I have transcribed, for anyone who is interested.

I also have copies of the following red cross reports on Stalag XXB

  • WO 224/226 23 March 1945 No. 26
  • WO 224/226 27 April 1945 No. 54
  • WO 224/226 10 May 1945 No. 63
  • WO 224/49 10 May 1945 p.4,44,46,50,52-59,61-62

I have only one photo of Winston Massey that is at Stalag XX1C (but I know he spent his time at Stalag XXB) - does anyone know anything about this Stalag XX1C, and why a woman would be in the photo, possibly a Red Cross Nurse? I have provided details of the reverse of the photo that may give some clue as to its origin.

Other than Stalag XXB, I have spent time in Shanghai and Luxor in India trying to discover the operations of the Queen's Royal Regiment but from the 1920's through to 1939 there is scant information. If anyone can help in this regard I would appreciate it. I only have uncovered blue prints of the mortar lines in Shanghai and their rules of engagement, and mention of the relief at the Quetta earthquake. Any help appreciated.

Ian Finlay



Alfred John Stevenson East Kent Regiment

My grandfather was Alfred Stevenson, serving in the East Kent Regiment. He was a POW at Malbork Stalag XXb, POW number 15353. Captured whilst retreating to Dunkirk, he was then force-marched across Europe, losing several toes to frost-bite along the way.

I don't have much more information about my grandfather as I was born after he passed away and he apparently didn't talk much about his life during the war. If anyone has any knowledge of him I would love to hear from you. Reading everyone else's accounts is humbling.

Claire Stevenson



Henry Albert Samuel Humphries Royal Artillery

My dad Harry Humphries was in Stalag 20a or b, in Poland. I would like to find anyone who would have known him.

Patricia Hayllar



Signalman Alexander "Sandy" Gault

I knew my Uncle Sandy was taken at Dunkirk but it was something he never talked about. Today, I was sorting through some family photos and found a picture of two of sisters and a brother and on the back it says 'Sig. Alexander Gault, 16510. Stalag XXB (81)'. I'm not sure if it was a photo sent to him or he already had it with him. I would love to know more about his experiences. He was a very lovely but introverted man, my father said he just wasn't the same man when he came back. My uncle died in 2002, he had no children and I would dearly love to honour his memory.

Rosemary Saunders



Pte. James Cunningham Cameron Highlanders

Jimmy is back row second from the left

Names of Cameron Highlanders in XXA

Jimmy Cunningham was my father's uncle, served in the Cameron Highlanders, 51st Division. He was captured on the 12th of June 1940 St Valery en Caux, marched to XXA, later transferred to XXB. His is POW number was 364. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Karen Hillas



Pte James McQuillan "Sandy" Saunders Durham Light Infantry

James Saunders is my father, who died when I was 15, that was 44yrs ago now, and I never got to know many details, and I only know now because of research. He was in Stalag XXB, Marienburg camp between 1939-1945. He was quite an intelligent young man, and I remember he could speak 12 languages, German being one of them, he told me of the time he would listen to the German soldiers chatting and unaware that he understood every word they were saying, he said he had a few laughs at their expense.

Desmond Saunders



L/Cpl. Alexander Spiers 2nd Btn. Seaforth Highlanders

The memories are very few. My father Alexander Spiers enlisted as a suplementary reservist in 1936, and was captured while digging for potatoes together with two other soldiers, during the last days of St Valery. He was held as a POW in Stalag 20b. While working with horses and helping out as a "Blacksmith" of which he had no experience at all, he got kicked and a dislodged a kneecap. He was reunited with Seaforth Highlanders in 1946/7 when he was stationed in Hamburg, Melle and Buxtehude in Germany. He died in 1982




Pte. Norman Henry "Benny" Goodman Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment

Norman Goodman joined up in October 1939 at 20 years of age and was captured on his birthday, 21st of May 1940 at Albert in Belgium. He was incarcerated in Stalag 20b at Marienburg in East Prussia until the death march as the Russians approached. He survived and weighed just 7 stones when he was released by the Americans in a Hamburg railway siding after the German guards quietly undid the trucks in the night. It was 21st May, his birthday, 1945. Norman died at the age of 72 in 1990.

Ron Goodman



Sgt. Sydney Clare Royal Armoured Corps

Sgt. Sydney Clare was a member of the Royal Armoured Corps and the Reconnaissance Corps. His POW number was 11228 and he was held at Stalag XXB which was at Malbork, Poland. He died in the 1980's.

Gill



Gnr. Ronald Frank Lancaster Royal Artillery

I am researching my grand father who was captured defending Dunkirk on the 26th of May 1940. He was then marched to Poland and was a P.O.W until 9th of May 1945. He was a Gnr with A coy Royal Artillery and was a prisoner at camp Stalag XXB in Poland. My grand father's name was Ronald Frank Lancaster. He was welsh and was born 15 Jan '39. He was a short (5ft 4") stocky man with blue eyes and fair hair. I think he may have worked as a blacksmith in nearby farms as a POW. He didn't talk much about the war but when I asked him how he got a 9" scar on his back, he told me that he and a mate escaped at some point when they had stopped next to a a tree to get some rest. On awakening he tried to rouse his mate but he had been shot. He tried to get away and that was when he was stabbed with a bayonet by the guards.

Ron was discharged on 15th of Feb 1946 at the Savoy Hotel in Bournemouth. He sadly passed away from cancer in 1990 just before I passed out from the Navy, something I wished he could have seen. I would be grateful if any one remembers my grandfather or if this jogs anyone's memory would they get in touch.

Grant Lancaster



Pte. Leonard George Price Northamptonshire Regiment

The Germans took us prisoner on the 28th of May 1940 at Ypres. One of our number was badly wounded and we had to carry him on a door which was the best stretcher we could find as the Germans had no medical equipment with them. We carried him for three miles through no-man's land past the German front line into their HQ where he was given medical attention. The Germans who captured us told us they had received no food for two days, and took our haversack rations, a tin of corned beef and biscuits.

After spending the night on a stone floor at the German HQ, we were taken with some other prisoners and marched for 10 to 20 miles per day through Belgium. The Belgians tried to bring us food and water but the German guards prevented us from receiving it. We had to live on the small ration the Germans provided - watery soup and one small loaf of bread among five men.

We were marched from dawn to dark, given our ration, and then we were locked in stables, pig sties or barns for the night. On reaching Holland we were packed into cattle trucks, 70 men in each truck, for a four-hour journey, then onto barges for the trip to Germany. A Red Cross boat came alongside, and a woman gave us food, and took names and addresses to notify our families back home (I was shown that same piece of paper when I arrived home five years later.) That meal was my last food for three days.

When we reached Mannheim in Germany we were given a small portion of black bread and a bit of sausage. After four hours we were piled into cattle trucks, with about 70 men crammed like sardines in each truck, and the doors bolted. The only daylight we saw for three days was what came through the ventilator. All our personal belongings had been taken from us, watches, rings, soap, towel and shaving kit. We were tired and dirty and worn out through travelling, marching and lack of food.

After a very trying journey we reached Thorn in Poland at about 3 am, all in a very bad condition and run down. We were issued with two blankets each, and told we would get "coffee" at 6.30 am - it turned out to be made with burnt barley and no milk. Our heads were shaved and our photos were taken, and we were given a number disc to keep with us at all times and show on demand.
I was sent on a small work party to labour on roads for about three weeks, then we were billeted on a farm. We worked for six days per week with Sunday off to wash and mend our clothes. We held our own Church service on the Sunday evening to pray for our loved ones at home.

Christmas 1940 I was sent back to the main camp at Marienburg, and I received my first letter from home, and my first Red Cross parcel. Life was pretty dull in the camp, rise at 6.30 am, get washed and clean our quarters, get our "coffee", and then wait until dinner-time dragged round. We considered ourselves lucky if we could get on a working party away from the camp, as civilians would give us a little extra food if and when the guards weren't watching too closely.

On the 25th of April 1941 I was moved from the big camp with a party of twelve men to work at a dairy. We were worked for 12 hours per day during the week and 18 hours at the weekend. The German guards searched our huts weekly for wireless sets, maps or anything else that might come in useful for escaping. They would pile everything in the middle of the room, pulling all the straw from our palliasses, but we managed to keep our wireless set well hidden under the floor-boards. It took us most of the night to tidy our quarters after these searches.
The Death March 1945

On the 23rd of January 1945 we were told to pack our kits as we were leaving for some unknown destination. I remember the morning very well as it was bitterly cold with about 30° of frost. Our breath froze on the lapels of our coats as we left the town of Marienburg. It was about 3 am and we were marched until dark with only a short break at midday. The only food we had was whatever we had managed to scrounge at the camp and bring with us.

That night we spent in an open field in the snow, with some of the fellows laying their coats on the ground and tried to sleep. In the morning one of the fellows was stiff with cold and frost bitten. We couldn't stir him at first, and had to warm him by rubbing him in the snow, and then running him around the field to get some circulation back into him. It was so bitterly cold that night one of the German guards died.

At daybreak we started marching again, carrying all our belongings with us. I started out with two suit-cases and two blankets. The most trying experience I ever had was the day we marched across an open and unprotected German air-field during a fierce blizzard. It was the middle of this winter, and we had about five miles of open ground to cross. I was wearing army battle-dress, two balaclavas, and had my two blankets wrapped around me. My legs were chapped for a week from the freezing wind.

Another day, during our midday rest after marching all morning, some were having a bite to eat if they had saved any food from the previous day. One of our fellows was a bit slow on getting back in the ranks ready to start marching again, so one of the German guards drew his pistol and shot him. We lost more fellows who died on the way or fell ill and were left behind.

After a time the weather improved, and I began to get fed up with marching with the column, and managed to hang back without being noticed until they were ahead of me. It was about four o'clock in the afternoon so I called at a house and asked for some hot water to make tea. The people there asked me to come in and gave me the best meal I had tasted for a very long while. I continued at my own pace, walking about 15 miles each day, knocking on doors for hot water for tea and a bit of food, staying in whatever shelter I could find for the night.

One night as it was getting dark, I came to a small house, where I asked for hot water to make tea. I was asked to come into the kitchen, where I was given a good meal. They also gave me hot water to wash my feet and legs which by that stage were rather dirty. They also darned my socks and made me stay there for the night. They told me they were evacuees from Hamburg and had lost their home in the bombing. I spent the night on their couch with two blankets and had my first good night's sleep for weeks. These good people also gave me breakfast next morning and I was very sorry to leave them, reluctantly resuming my journey at about ten o'clock.

At the next village I was directed to the school and told to ask for the Burgermeister.

Private Leonard George Price who served in the Northamptonshire Regiment

(Here my father's notes end, with his story incomplete. However, unlike many of his comrades he survived his ordeal was repatriated to England at the end of the war. He met my mother and they married in 1948. In 1951 they emigrated to Australia.)

Paul Price



TSM. Ivor Coles

My Father TSM Ivor Coles was captured at St Valery and held at Stalag XXb, Marionberg and outstations. I do have some letters and photos and list of men I believe transported with him.

Tony Coles



George Bailey 23rd Field Regiment Royal Artillery

My late father, George Bailey, Royal Artillery, 23rd Field Regiment, was captured at St Valerie, whilst performing the rear guard action. He was a prisoner of war for 5 years 1940 to 1945 at Stalag XXB, He and a few others escaped at the near end of the war, and was helped by the Russian troops.

Peter Bailey



Pte. Charles Edward Fryer 13th Btn. Queens Royal Regiment

I'm just starting to research my late fathers war record and so far I have discovered the following:

His name was Charles Edward Fryer and he enlisted on 18/10/39 and was in the 13th Queens Royal Regiment. That he was recorded as being held in camp 20B in 1945 as POW number 7929. The low number suggests to me that he was captured early in the war and from what he told me when I was young he was in the BEF and captured falling back to Dunkirk and this number would appear to bear that out. I also gained the impression that he did not think he had a bad war and he always had respect for the way the Germans treated them, especially near the end of the war when the Germans had nothing but the prisoners still got their Red Cross parcels.

I also remember that my father hated American TV programs apart from Hogans Hero's (anyone remember it) this he said was near the truth. I know for a fact that my father could take a lock apart and cut a key to fit it a skill he said he gained as a POW.

I am applying to get his war record but this will take up to 9 months and I presume this will only cover his time as a soldier not a POW, if anyone has already done this can you let me know what information I will get. I also understand that the Red Cross in Geneva can supply records of POW's, can anyone enlighten me as to what this will contain and at what cost as at present I have been told a price per hour but not how many hours it will take.

The information I have so far was obtained from the Imperial War Museum and they have also given me a list of books which contain references to camp 20B. As I only got the list today I have not as yet read any of them and so can not vouch that they are totally about 20B or only passing references.

The list is as follows with the number at the end being the ISBN code:

(Buying books via these links helps to fund this website)

Finally if anyone wants to contact me as regards my comments above or with information which may assist me please feel free.

Peter Fryer



Bmdr. John Reginald George Royal Horse Artillery

My father John George, was known by his middle name, Reg. He was a Bombadier in the R H A, 'B' Troop. He was captured at St Valery on 12th of June 1940. He spent 5 years as a prisoner of war and was at Stalag xxb. Although I seem to remember him telling me that he was billeted in the village and he worked for a haulage company. Unfortunately he died in 2000 before I began my research. Hope someone can help me find more information.

Anita Wells



Pte. Owen David "Dafydd" Thomas Welsh Guards

My father Owen Thomas, was taken prisoner at XXB Malbork. He didn't tell us anything about his time there and I would be interested if anyone has any details or photos of him. He died in 1985, he is missed.

Diane



Gnr. Donald Trevelyn Joseph "Smudger" Smith 99 Field Regiment Royal Artillery

My father is middle row, centre

My late father Donald Smith was captured at Dunkirk and was reported missing on 20th of July 1940. On 18th of September 1940 he was reported as being a POW residing in Stalag 20B, Marienburg, Poland, POW number 9352. I believe he made a good friend with a fellow prisoner, George Sutherland from Dagenham, Essex. My father was very reluctant to speak of his wartime experiences but I believe that along with George Sutherland, he escaped and eventually made his way back to England via Odessa. If anyone has any further information, I would love to hear from them.

Alan Smith



Gunner Les Hayes Royal Artillery

I would like to contact anyone who knew my late father, Gunner Les Hayes, Royal Artillery when he was a POW in Stalags XXA and XXB from 1940 to 1945. Any information or photographs would be appreciated.

Ann Hayes



Pte. Sidney Grindy East Kent Regiment

My father was a POW from 1940 to 1945. He was taken prisoner at Le Milliard on 24th May 1940 and confined at:
  • Stalag XXA at Thorn (9th June 1940 to 16th April 1941)
  • Stalag XXb at Marienberg (18th April 1941 to 17th May 1943)
  • Stalag XXA at Thorn (27th November 1943 to 23rd January 1945)

    He was also posted to the following work camps:

  • Elbing Camp (20th May 1941 to 17th February 1942)
  • Konitz Camp (11th April 1944 to 23rd January 1945).

    Does anyone have any information about members of the regiment who were confined with my father?

  • Ian Grindy



    Donald James Shaw Royal Army Ordnance Corps

    I am trying to help a family friend get in touch with the following individuals or relatives. Donald James Shaw RAOC, held at Stalag VIIIB. S/Sgt D. Grant, held at Stalag IVB. John Anderson, held at Stalag XXB. Can anyone help?

    Rod Davies



    W. A.M. "Alec" Murrell Northumberland Fusiliers

    My father served in the Northumberland Fusiliers and was a POW for all the war. He was in Stalag XXB. Like everyone else he never spoke about it. Any information or photos would be welcome.

    Linda E.



    James Richardson

    Unfortunately, I never met my grandfather, James Richardson, from Glasgow but I understand he was captured in St Valerie in France, which I visited recently, and was a prisoner of war for 5 years in Stalag XXB. This is the only information I have for him. My mum, died recently, and whilst visiting my aunt she began to talk about her dad. Any information, as a starting point would be gratefully welcomed.

    Linda Lynch



    Charles Hunter Taylor

    Charles Taylor served with the 51st Highlanders Division and was held at Stalag XXB

    Anne Moir



    Leonard John Waterhouse 6th Btn. Queen's Own Royal West Kent

    I am trying to find information about my father, Leonard John Waterhouse, and also Eddie Bauldy and Danny O'Leary, of the 6th Btn. Queen's Own Royal West Kents. Dad was a POW in Stalag XXA and XXB in Poland.

    Eric J Waterhouse



    Albert Derbyshire 1 Air Form Sigs Royal Corps of Signals (d.19th January 1945)

    My great uncle, Albert Derbyshire, was wounded and captured at Dunkrik. He was admitted to Stalag XXa in 1940, Stalag XXb in 1941, then moved around till he died on 19th January 1945. His fate is unknown and there is no known grave for him. He may have been executed on the forced march from the Russians. I would be interested in hearing from anyone who knew him.

    Paul Clive Rowley



    Girardot

    My father was a POW in Stalag 20B at Marienburg during WWII.

    Bob Girardot



    Ernest John Hartley Worcester Regiment

    My father, Jack Hartley of the Worcester Regiment, was a POW (No. 19227) in Stalag XXb from April 1940 until April 1945.

    Jacquie Lowes



    Brinsmead

    My father was a POW in Stalag XXB having been captured at Dunkirk. He also served in WWI.

    John Brinsmead



    James Horatio Wills Royal Engineers

    James Wills was 26 years old when he joined the Army in 1939. He was sent to France and was present during the retreat by the BEF to Dunkirk in 1940. He had a hard time fighting the Germans as the Royal Engineers had to rebuild blown up bridges etc for the rest of the army to follow. The fighting did not go well and he was shot in the leg. He and the rest of his company were surrounded by the Germans at St Valery in Northern France. This was at the time that thousands of men were rescued by the "little ships" and taken off the beaches.

    After he had been captured, back in Britain he had been listed as missing, so no one knew if he was dead or missing. The Germans made all the prisoners walk to their POW camps. Eventually, they made it to Stalag XXB which was near Kisonburg. In 1945 the Russians advanced into Germany and they started getting very close to the POW camp, so the German soldiers all fled in fear of being captured. James and the rest of the POWs made their escape, not wanting to fall into Russian hands. They got on some cattle trucks and went all the way by rail through eastern Europe to Odessa, a port on the Black Sea, where they found a ship bound for England. James Horatio Wills got home in April 1945. He lived until the age of 53, dying in 1967. During his life after the war he travelled all around the world several times. There are not many places he didn't go to. I hope you have found this information interesting. This information is from my nan, Phyliss Wilmot.

    Greg Wilmot



    Martin "Marky" Collins Northumberland Fusiliers

    Does anyone have information regarding my dad, Martin `Marky' Collins from East London, who served with the Northumberland Fusiliers/Durham Light Infantry during WWII? My dad was captured at Arras in 1940 during the fall of Dunkrik and was imprisoned in (I think() Stalag XXB in East Prussia. Sadly, my dad is no longer alive, but I would be grateful for any information about him and life in the camp.

    Tracy Sturgess



    Harry Dalby 1st Btn. Black Watch

    My late grandfather, Harry Dalby, was a POW in Stalag XXA. His POW records have been translated and they give 2.K Batlingen, Batlingen 20 and Reigersfeld as work camps. My grandfather, while in one of the camps, had what can only be described as a large hankie or part of a sheet with his battalion's badge and two soldiers in Highland dress on either side of it. This was drawn (possibly in ink). It also has HEYDEBRECK written on the top, which I believe is Batlingen. We do not know who made this for him, so if anyone knows who did or has information about it, I would like to hear from them. He was in the 1st Battalion The Black Watch (51st Highland Division) and was captured at St Valery on 16th June 1940.

    Michele Guest



    Corporal Walter Bloxham Auxiliary Military Pioneer Corps

    My grandfather, Walter Bloxham, from Rugby, was a corporal in the AMPC and was taken prisoner in May 1940, aged 43. He spent time in Stalag XXA(3A), though my mother believes she received a letter from Stalag XXB. After repatriation, Walter refused to speak about the war. He remained in poor health until he died in 1964. If anybody has documents, photos or knowledge of Walter Bloxham, please contact me.

    Teresa Wormald



    Pte. Percy Frederick George "Fred" King A Battalion Queens Own Royal West Kent

    My father was captured in the retreat of Dunkirk being part of the rearguard action defending Dunkirk he was marched up to Marienberg from Dunkirk and put into P.O.W. Camp Stalag XXb. He was there from 1941 to 1945. His no in the camp was 7543. He, along with others, was liberated in 1945.

    If anyone knew of him or heard of him from any relatives who served in that camp, I would love to hear from you. He was in the Queen's Own Royal West Kent Regiment

    Raymond William King



    James Anthony Emery Moore Mitchell Seaforth Highlanders

    My great uncle, James Anthony Emery Moore Mitchell (known as Tony or Anthony, was born in 1906 and served with the Seaforths. He came from Saltburn, near Invergordon. He was a POW in Stalag XXB in Poland. The family has told me that he was captured at St Valery in June 1940 and marched 2,000 miles to coal barges(?) to the Polish/German border. Can anyone help me with information?

    Hilary



    Pte. Walter Grant Royal Army Ordnance Corps

    My father and stepfather were both in Stalag XXA and XXB. Their names are Walter Grant from Sheffield, a Private in the RAOC, and Eric Tuckerman from Stanley in County Durham - I have forgotten his rank and regiment. I have many photos of XXA and XXB. My father used to have terrible nightmares. Anyone with information please get in touch.

    James Grant



    Les Hayes 60th Anti-Tank Regiment Royal Artillery

    I am trying to contact anyone who knew my late father, Les Hayes, a gunner in the 60th Antitank Rgt. He was captured in France on 31st July 1940 and released on 11th May 1945. He was held at Stalags XXA and XXB. I have three photos from the camps. Dad did not talk about his experiences.

    Ann Hayes



    Jim Meadowcroft 1st Btn. Ox & Bucks Light Infantry

    My father was at Stalag XXB and I have some group photos of Scots, Yorks, Midlands and Serbs at the camp. My father was billeted at Wagaries, Northern France and captured at Hazbrooke.

    Ron Meadowcroft



    Gunner Alf Somerfield 23rd Field Rgt. Royal Artillery

    My dad was a POW at Stalag XXB. I believe he was taken prisoner at St Valery on the retreat to Dunkirk on 12th June 1940.

    Brian Somerfield



    James Gavin Clark Tyneside Scottish Btn Black Watch

    My dad, James Gavin Clark of Durham, served in the Tyneside Scottish Rgt. He was in Stalags XXA and XXB, having been captured in 1940. Does anyone remember him?

    Malcolm Clark



    Gunner G. Bates Royal Artillery

    My father, Gunner G. Bates, Royal Artillery, was a POW in one of the numerous work camps attached to Stalag XXB. I know they used to call the head German `Robin Hood' and it was on a farm, but much of their work was of a forestry nature. I would like to know the whereabouts of the farm and any information anyone may have on it.

    David Bates



    Kenneth Herbert Warner

    My father, Kenneth Herbert Warner, was held at Stalag XXB, which I believe was in Marienburg. I have two group photos and a postcard that he sent home during his stay which I am willing to share. I am interested in information about this camp.

    R. Warner



    Pte Leonard Dale Green Howards (Yorkshire Rgt)

    My grandfather was a POW in Stalag 20B from 1941. His POW number was 13346.

    Ben Carney



    Cpl. Charles H. Cox Royal East Kent Rgt (The Buffs)

    Cpl Cox was a POW in Stalag 20b. His POW Number was 13358.




    Sandy Baillie 51st Highland Div.

    My father-in-law, Sandy Baillie, was captured at St Valery en Caux in June 1940 (part of the 51st Highland Division). After being marched across Europe, he spent the remainder of the war in Poland (Stalag XXA and Stalag XXB). He has never talked about the conditions he endured.

    Ian Forbes



    Pte. William Herbert "Ginger" Evans

    My father, William (Bill or Ginger) Evans was captured fighting rear guard at Dunkirk and ended up a POW in Poland. I have his dog tag stamped KR.GEF.LAGERTHORN NR 8918. I also have an home made key which purports to have opened one of the gates. The story goes that the youngest of the three, Graham Dudding, a Kiwi, would squeeze through the gates and unlock them so that my Dad and his other friend, Charley Redrup, could go into the local village to meet their girlfriends. I would love to hear from anyone who knew them although I realise the likelihood of them being alive is remote. My dad passed away 17 years ago.

    Jim Evans



    James Edward Thorpe

    My father was a POW, captured in Lille, France and marched to Poland to Stalag 20b. He was just 18 and in the territorial army when he was sent to war.

    Jayne Taylor



    Jack Hartley Worcester Rgt.

    My father, Jack Harley, Worcester Rgt was wounded in the leg at Dunkirk, aged 20. His POW No was 19227 and he was in Stalag XXB from April 1940 to April 1945. During his time there he worked in a cheese factory. He was liberated by the American 9th Army. He was a good singer and a good football player.

    Jacquie Lowes



    Pte. Denis Charles "Spud" Taylor 2nd Battalion Northampton Regiment

    My father was captured on the retreat to Dunkirk. He was sent to Stalag XXb.




    Pte. John Frederick Jones Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment

    Fred Jones was my uncle. He was called up in February 1940 age 23, and fought with the BEF being wounded and taken prisoner on May 20 1940. He spent the rest of the War in various POW camps including Stalag 11B and XXB. He was very badly treated and suffered badly on the 1000km Death March. He was to suffer digestive problems for the rest off his like as a result of eating dried pearl barley, the only food that they could find. After he was picked up by the Americans, he was taken to Belsen Concentration Camp to try and identify SS troops who were disguising themselves as inmates. He was able to scrounge a camera and took number of photos of Belsen which, as he had no children of his own, were handed down to me.

    Fred was the son of a docker and had no education but but was very intelligent (He qualified as a Chartered Accountant after the War) He became fluent in both German and Polish and these language skills were used in the identification of SS troops.

    If anybody has any old photos with a JF Jones on, or if there is anybody still alive who members him, please contact me

    D Pearse



    Gunner George Bates 2nd Searchlight Royal Artillery

    POWs at 299-XXB

    Lancaster NG168-115 Sqdn

    Signatures of crew

    My father, Gunner G C Bates, was captured near Frevent on 20th May 1940 as the German spearhead advanced towards the coast. He arrived at Stalag XXB via XXIA, XXIB AND XXIC on 14 June 1941.

    Dad spent much of his time working on a farm at Workcamp 299/34(Old No/New No)at Wesseln, which I understand is in two possible locations, one near Elbing and the other near what is now Lelkowo. I have a photo of dad with his fellow prisoners on the farm and another of the farm itself which was taken by a local Polish man.

    Dad took part in the Long March in the winter of 1945 and was eventually liberated by the Americans and flown home to England from Reims to Ford Aerodrome by Lancaster flown by a mixed English/Canadian aircrew on 10th May 1945. There is a photo of the Lancaster given to my dad by the crew and signed on the back. If anyone recognises any of the men in the photo and would like a copy or has any information about the farm please feel free to email me.

    David Bates



    Pte. Ernest Brearley Royal Artillery

    Ernest Brearley in doorway. xxv Marienburg prison camp

    Ernest Brearley was my father. His POW number was 1981 and he was at Stalag XXb Marienburg for a time during WW2. I have a couple of photographs of him in a prison camp and XXb is written on one of them. I know he was at various camps throughout his life as a prisoner of war which was six years, he was taken at the beginning of the war. He told me how he was marched to different camps, one of which was a sugar beet factory. I don't know which camp this was, but the local Germans would trade with the prisoners for sugar. Even some of the guards would escort them to the local cinema in exchange for stuff from the red cross parcels.

    I think XXb Marienburg must have been his last camp. He used to tell me how the prisoners where led out of camp and marched for miles. Anyone falling behind etc, would be shot. Passing through a bombed out village one day he and his pal spotted a jar of dried peas in the window. At night they decided to try and sneak back to get it. While doing this they heard a noise like bees buzzing. This was getting ever louder. Eventually it became clear that it was the noise of the prisoners whispering. They were asking where the guards were going. The guards were running away. Shortly afterwards the Americans came along the road telling the prisoners to make their way in the direction the Americans had come and to find refuge somewhere as everything in that direction is now yours!

    The Russian Army was heading toward Marienburg and the Germans were terrified of them. Prisoners were being begged to take residence in German households as the German civilians thought they would be safe from the Russian Army if they had a British or American soldier as a lodger.

    My father had to walk for days before he found a farm that wasn't already full. He was there quite a while before he transported to Brussels. In Brussels the prisoners were housed, given money and an escort until they could be sent home.

    Stu



    Pte. Eric Earl Flisher 4th Btn. East Kent Regiment

    I am trying to find more information about my granddad's time as a POW. According to the information I have from the ICRC, he was captured at Fecamp on 11th June 1940 and arrived at Stalag XXA on 9th July 1940 having come from a Dulag. He was then transferred to Stalag XXB on 1st March 1941 for the remainder of the war. His unit was 4th Battalion, East Kent (Buffs). His POW number was 13947.

    Matt



    Ron F. Lancaster Royal Artillery

    My grandfather, Ron F Lancaster 1520782 Royal Artillery, was captured on 26th May 1940 at Dunkirk. He was marched to Stalag XXB in Poland where he remained a POW until 9th May 1945, a short stocky Welshman who may have worked as a blacksmith in nearby farms whist at the camp. Escaped at some point and received 9 inch bayonet wound on his back when recaptured, this only healed by guards giving him salt to clean the wound. He was discharged on 15th February 1946 at the Savoy hotel in Bournemouth. If this jogs any memories I would be very grateful to hear from you.

    Lancaster



    Frank Tailford

    I am looking for any information I can find on Frank Tailford. I was told that he was a prisoner of war and was held at Stalag XXb. Does anyone know him?

    Nicola



    Ronald Scott

    My uncle, Ronald Scott, was taken prisoner at Dunkirk and eventually ended up at Stalag XXB 127. He wouldn't talk about his experiences in the war. The only thing he would say about it was that he worked on a farm keeping the generators going. He had worked on the railway and so knew a bit about engines. Anyone with any knowledge of him or what he might have done I would welcome any news of his escapades.

    Royce Longden



    Drvr. William Alexander Gibbs

    My father was a POW in Stalag XXb from 1940 to 1945. His POW Number was 9628. If anyone has any information available I would be more than happy.




    Pte. Sydney Grindy Royal East Kent Regiment

    Can anyone help me trace fellow members of the Royal East Kent (The Buffs) Regiment who were confined with my father as a POW in 1940-45? My father - Private 6286696 Sydney Grindy was taken prisoner at Le Milliard on 24th May 1940. He was confined in the following camps:
  • Stalag XXA at Thorn (9th June 1940 - 16th April 1941)
  • Stalag XXB at Marienberg (18th April 1941 - 17th May 1943)
  • Stalag XXA at Thorn (27th November 1943 - 23rd January 1945).

    He was also posted to the following work camps:

  • Elbing Camp from 20th May 1941 - 17th February 1942
  • Konitz Camp from 11th April 1944 - 23rd January 1945.

    I am partculary keen to trace any members of the regiment who may have been confined with my father during this period.

  • Susan Grindy



    James Bryden

    My uncle, James Bryden from Glasgow, was held at Marienburg, Stalag 20B. Does anyone have any recollection of him?

    Joan Brown



    Spr. Ronald Easton Royal Engineers

    I am trying to find out about my granda who served in WWII. He was Roland Easton (Sapper) Royal Engineers (Northumberland). Reg No 1503522, POW No 13200, Camp 20B (Marienburg).

    Rolande Unwin



    Leonard George Price Northamptonshire Regiment

    My father, Leonard George Price of the Northamptonshire Regiment, was in Stalag XXB from 1941-45. I have found some group photos in his personal effects (he died in 1989).

    Paul Price



    Ron Page 1st Btn. East Riding Yeomanry 1st Arm. Recon Bgde.

    My father, Ron Page, was with the 1st Btn East Riding Yeomanry, and was taken prisoner near Watou, Belgium on 30th May 1940. He was at XXA Thorn, and XXB Marienburg, Elbing, Paulsdorf, Garnsee and Deutsch Eylau. He has a couple of POW group photos from XXB Deutsch Eylau taken in 1943 and 1944. There are names and home towns for 16 of the men in the 1944 photo. He says that the men in the photos are from a variety of regiments.

    Gerry Page



    Ken Short

    I am trying to find out more about my late father Ken Short who was, according to his POW war record cards, in Stalag XXa and XXb. The only bit of information I ever had from him about his POW years, was about the long forced march he did with all other prisoners from Poland into Germany in January, February and March 1945. Sadly, he is not in any of the photos on this site.

    Colin Short



    Stanley Howes Warwickshire Rgt.

    My uncle Stan was a POW (1940-1945) in Stalag XXB. I know this as I have all the letters he sent home from the POW camp to his sister (my grandmother). The letters are very sad as you can imagine, but in the same way uplifting. His name was Stanley Howes of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. He was part of the first BEF that was left stranded at Dunkirk.

    Mark Jones



    Joseph William Brunskill

    I am trying to find information about Joseph William Brunskill who was a POW in Stalag 20B. POW Number 7744.

    David Sams



    Gnr. Robert Stainze Royal Artillery

    I am trying to find any information concerning my father and his experiences at Stalag XXb as a POW. His name was Robert (Bob) Stainze, POW number 19132. He was a gunner/driver in the Royal Artillery. He worked on farms in the area and we have a few photos of him with a couple of the other POWs. One photo has on the back the name Jack Mc'arthur, 81 Garscube Road, Glasgow C4, Scotland, who we assume was a close comrade. I would appreciate to hear from anybody who might have known my father from XXB or the dark days of the long march.

    Brenda Egerton



    Pte. Walter Grant Royal Army Ordnance Corps

    My father, Pte. Walter Grant, served in the RAOC and was in Stalag XXA and XXB. He came from Sheffield.

    Pte. Eric Tuckerman, who was in RASC, was also in Stalag XXB and became very goods pals with my father. When my father married my mother, Stella Arber from Sheffield on 29th December, 1945, Eric was my father's best man. Later, when my father died in 1975, Eric courted my mother and they were married in May 1977. Sadly, Eric died in 1996 and my mother died on Christmas morning 2002. I have put on my webpage a group photograph of Walter, fifth from the right on the top row and Eric fourth from the right on the middle row, when they were in Stalag XXB. There is also a group photograph of Walter second from right middle row when he was in Stalag XXA as well. webpage: http://web.onetel.net.uk/~tuppencechange

    James Grant



    Pte. Eric Tuckerman Royal Army Service Corps

    Pte. Eric Tuckerman, served in the RASC and was in Stalag XXB and became very goods pals with my father Pte Walter Grant, RAOC. When my father married my mother, Stella Arber from Sheffield on 29th December, 1945, Eric was my father's best man. Later, when my father died in 1975, Eric courted my mother and they were married in May 1977. Sadly, Eric died in 1996 and my mother died on Christmas morning 2002. I have put on my webpage a group photograph of Walter, fifth from the right on the top row and Eric fourth from the right on the middle row, when they were in Stalag XXB. There is also a group photograph of Walter second from right middle row when he was in Stalag XXA as well. webpage: http://web.onetel.net.uk/~tuppencechange

    James Grant



    Capt. William Cyril Clarke

    My grandfather was a POW in Stalag xxb from about 1942 until the end of the war. He was on the long march (death march). I have a photo copy of a photo taken in 1942, on the back it reads: "from Cpt. W.C. Clarke (William Cyril) 13363 Stalag XXb dated 28/6/1942". Does anyone remember him?

    Kelvin Brooker



    Ralph Amato Cameronian Highlanders

    My uncle, Ralph Amato, was a POW in Stalag XXB. His POW number was 18035. He served with the Cameron Highlanders (51st Division) and was captured at St Valery. After he was liberated he was shipped back to England and stationed at a YMCA in Chelsea until his discharge. I know (from some things that my family have said about him) that he was a great artist and played the classical guitar. I'm hoping to hear from anybody who knew him or heard of him. Sadly, he is now dead. He never spoke much to his family and friends about his experiences in the war. I'm looking for any information.

    Sam Gillan



    Stanley B. Hudaly Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders

    My father was Stanley B Hudaly. He was in Stalag XXB and was captured at Dunkirk. He was in the 51st Division with the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders and I remember him saying he was captured at St Valery. I have some photos from the camp days. I have been trying to trace his army records as he returned all his medals when he received them and I would like to try and find them again.

    Nadia Goodman



    Edward G. Burn

    My wife's uncle was a POW No. 14658 and was interned in Stalag XXB, XXA and VIIB. Sadly, he is now deceased, his name was Edward G Burn. He was captured in or near Dunkirk. Does anyone have information on him, photos of the camps, how they got to these camps, how they were liberated, or information on anyone who might have known him?

    Andy Merrett



    Samuel Harold Renney

    My grandfather, Samuel Harold Renney, was from Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria. I believe he went to France with the BEF and was captured in the early part of the war. I think he may have been at two camps, but I do know he was at Stalag XXB, in Poland. If anyone knew him or could give me more information on Stalag XXB, I would be very grateful.

    Chris Johnson







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