Work Camp 10030 GW, Lavamund & Schwabeck
The following pictures of the dam at Lavamund were taken by Peter Linowitz in 2001.
|Dave||Abel||Pte||745||Hunterville, NZ; cook|
|Adam Lancelot||Adamson||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div.||534||Australia|
|C.C.||Allardice||Pte||1 Aust. Cp. HQ||3972||Australia|
|Edwin||Atkinson||Sgt||RA||144||London; Camp Leader|
|Victor William||Balls||Sgmn||R Sigs||455|
|J.L. (Jack)||Bamford||Sgmn||166||New Zealand|
|Wally||Barber||Pte||139||Christchurch, New Zealand|
|Leslie||Barnett||Gnr||RA||5021||Ilford; Hut 1/6|
|Arthur Arnold||Bastable||Gnr||RA||761||Derbyshire, England|
|Leo Charles||Bevis||Pte||2/12 Inf. Bn.||3459||Tasmania|
|A.L.||Birchmore||Sgmn||R Sigs||279||Hut 1/6|
|A.V. (Vern)||Blakeway||Spr||185||New Zealand|
|E. (Fred)||Boardman||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||433||Sydney, Australia|
|Colin Cameron||Brodie||Sgmn||R Sigs||London; died 18.5.43|
|John Edward Laws||Burns||Gnr||RA||360|
|R.E.||Butler||Gnr||119||Auckland, New Zealand|
|R.L.||Campbell||Gnr||RA||425||Bishop Auckland, UK|
|Jack||Carr-Lord||T/Sgt||18 Inf. Tng.||281||Australia|
|W.H. (Wally)||Cartmill||Gnr||NZ Art.||391||New Zealand; musician|
|G.P. (Gerry)||Cavanagh||Spr||223||New Zealand; also 107/L|
|F.P.||Chitty||Spr||6 Fld. Coy.||244||Gisborne, NZ; transf'd to Stalag 18C|
|Louis Paul Davidson||Churton||Pte||765||New Zealand|
|R.E.||Close||Sgmn||R Sigs||74||Wellingborough, UK|
|Herbert Thomas||Codling||Pte||24 Bn.||354||New Zealand; also 1042/GW|
|Ken C.||Cowan||Pte||22 Bn.||5915||Apiti, New Zealand|
|A.S.||Cox||Dvr||R Sigs||104||Cambridge, UK|
|R.C. (Sam)||Crone||Pte||572||Taranaki, NZ|
|R.M.||Crowe||Pte||5822||Auckland, New Zealand|
|Winston F.||Daniell||T/L/Cpl||4205||Te Awamatu, New Zealand|
|Thomas Edmund||Davies||Pte||19 Bn.||275||Taihape, NZ; Hut 1/6|
|H.J.R.||Dixon||Sgt||R Sigs||668||Hut 1/6|
|Ralph John William||Dolphin||Dvr||73||NZ; repat'd?|
|Percy Alexander||Dorothy||Cpl||RAVC||387||Liverpool; also 565/L, 576/L|
|Robert Dickson||Douglas||Gnr||RA||787||Barnsley; also 10029/GW|
|F.A (Andy)||Dunlop||Pte||431||New Plymouth, NZ|
|Max S.||Elliott||Tpr||Div. Cav.||303||New Zealand; Musician|
|Peter J.J. (Pat)||Eruera||Pte||685||N. Auckland, NZ|
|Charley E.J.||Fairman||Sgmn||R Sigs||379|
|Stan R.||Fairweather||Pte||129||Wanganui, New Zealand|
|James||Fall||L/Cpl||R Sigs||444||Hut 1/6|
|J.E. (Ted)||Fearon||Tpr||Div. Cav.||194||Taranaki, NZ|
|F.T. (Tennant)||Fenton||Sgt||84||New Zealand; transf'd to Stalag 383|
|K.R.||Fergusson||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||797||Melbourne, Australia|
|James Carson||Fletcher||Pte||825||Dunedin, NZ|
|Hec L.||Forbes||Pte||392||Taranaki, NZ|
|Nelson||French||Rfmn||191||Te Kuiti, NZ|
|D.R.||Galbraith||L/Cpl||161||Rotorua, New Zealand|
|R. S.||Galbraith||Pte||254||Wellington, NZ|
|T.H.de F.||Garland||Gnr||227||New Zealand|
|Doug A||Gayton||Pte||501||New Plymouth, NZ|
|Desmond Joseph (Jock)||Goodley||Pte||89||Gisbourne, NZ|
|George Kenneth||Gray||Sgt||R Sigs||351|
|M.||Gray||A/Cpl||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||405||Australia|
|R.H.||Gredig||Pte||772||New Plymouth, NZ|
|Charles Thomas||Green||Pte||249||NZ; died 9.12.41 (accident)|
|Jack||Gregory||Sgt||19 Bn.||202||Taihape, NZ; transf'd to Stalag 383|
|Colin Henry||Greiner||Pte||450||NZ; also 200/GW, 91/GW|
|Albert D.||Griffiths||Dvr||RASC||1740||Cardiff, Wales|
|John Kenneth||Grimley||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC.||337||Australia|
|Jack A.||Guillard||Pte||203||New Cross, NZ; also 13048/L|
|T.H.||Gunn||Dvr||R Sigs||298||Stoke, UK|
|Peter J.J.||Hakaraia||Pte||322||Otaki, NZ; Hut 1/6|
|A.E. (Ted)||Hardy||Gnr||4 Fld. Rgt.||57||New Zealand|
|Allan Hilton||Harvey||Gnr||2/3 Fd. Rg.||3463||Australia|
|G.W.||Hearn||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||295||Innisfail, Australia|
|Alf||Hedges||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||344||Australia; killed 14.3.45|
|Michael||Hennessy||Pte||2/4 Inf. Bn.||782||Australia; Hut 1/6|
|R.||Hewings||Sgmn||R Sigs||646||Cardiff, Wales|
|Lin F.||Homes||Pte||183||Hut 1/6|
|James Henry Edward||Johnston||Pte||1 A.C. H.Q.||3996||Australia|
|P.D.||Jones||Pte||343||Southland, New Zealand|
|A.J.||Keenan||Pte||842||Te Awamutu, NZ; transf'd to Stalag 18C|
|S.C.||Kerr||Pte||2/7 Inf. Bn.||406||Melbourne, Australia|
|Basil A. (Silver)||Lacy||L/Cpl||19 Bn.||222||New Zraland; also 956/GW, 11022/GW|
|William Henry (Billy)||Lakin||Gnr||RA||562||Clitheroe|
|W.R.||Lay||Pte||2/6 Inf. Bn.||877||Australia|
|Perce E.||Leary||Pte||325||New Zealand|
|Gordon W.||Leigh||Sgt||893||Whangarei, NZ; also Flachau|
|Reginald James||Lilly||Pte||DCLI||6659||Capt'd N. Africa; Italy POW|
|Norman R.||Lydster||L/Sgt||71||New Zealand; transf'd to Stalag 383|
|E.||Malinowski||Pte||274||Hamaki Plains, New Zealand|
|J.P.||Manson||Dvr||R Sigs||982||Hut 1/6|
|V.F.||Marks||Gnr||335||Masterton, New Zealand|
|G.F.||Marshall||Gnr||RA||443||London; transf'd to Stalag 17A|
|Paul T.||Maurirere||Pte||28 Bn.||503||Talaga Bay, NZ; Hut 1/6|
|C.J. (Charlie)||McHardy||Pte||324||Taihape, NZ; Hut 1/6|
|Andrew D.||McIntosh||Sgmn||R Sigs||706||Leith, Scotland|
|W.E.||McMahon||Gnr||148||Taihape, New Zealand|
|K.K.||Miller||Gnr||RA||388||could be 338|
|Garnett William||Moir||Pte||20 Bn.||560||Invercargill, NZ|
|E. (Ted)||Morgan||Sgmn||R Sigs||468||Wales|
|Frank Henry Charles||Morris||Sgmn||R Sigs||551||Northampton; Frantschach (possible)|
|Edward Leslie (Bill)||Mulhall||Spr||2/1 Fd. Co.||5918||Queensland, Australia; Melody Makers|
|A.D.||Munro||Pte||2/6 Inf. Bn.||3363||Victoria, Australia|
|J.||Nathan||Pte||85||Hokianga, NZ; transf'd to Stalag 18C|
|Harry||Nield||Pte||898||New Zealand; transf'd to Stalag 18C|
|A.W.||Nutting||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||174||Meanden, Tasmania|
|F. (Jock)||Oates||Pte||RAVC||105||Fife, Scotland; cook|
|K.P. (Pete)||Oliver||L/Cpl||301||Marton, NZ|
|Tutu (Thomas)||Paraone||Pte||462||Ruatoria, NZ; Hut 1/6|
|Lesley Albert||Pearce||Sgmn||R Sigs||64||Woodhouse, UK|
|Stan Albert||Peters||Pte||60||Wyndham, NZ; capt'd Corinth; dental unit,18A|
|Frank||Purdey||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||608||Australia|
|Norman Edward||Rackham||Pte||331||Paeroa, NZ|
|A.||Racklow||King Country, NZ|
|Robert M. (Bob)||Rae||Pte||224||Taihape, NZ|
|Robert Leslie||Raw||Sgmn||R Sigs||293|
|Simon E.||Reuben||T/L/Cpl||813||N. Auckland, New Zealand|
|Melita Joseph (Joe)||Riddell||Sgmn||NZ Sigs||Te Aroha, NZ; died 12.12.44|
|Gordon G||Rigby||Pte||258||New Zealand; transf'd to Stalag 317|
|Derek H.||Riggir||Pte||477||Tauranga, NZ|
|D.C.||Roberton||Pte||66||Kaukapakapa, New Zealand|
|William||Samson||Pte||862||N. Auckland, New Zealand|
|J.||Sergeant||789||Opotiki, NZ; could be 189|
|Jack W.||Sidaway||Pte||536||Marlborough, NZ|
|J.H.||Smithwick||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||502||Sydney, Australia|
|Stuart Barnard||Spooner||Pte||152||New Zealand; also 10029/GW|
|R.H.||Stevenson||Pte||7182||Hamilton, New Zealand|
|G.||Stoney||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||330||Geelong, Australia|
|John (Jack)||Swinnerton||Bdr||RA||508||Liverpool; also 942/GW|
|Jim||Tapping||Pte||2/11 Inf. Bn.||5340||Perth, Australia|
|Jim||Te Namu||T/L/Cpl||838||N. Auckland, New Zealand|
|David R||Thurlow||Cpl||860||New Zealand|
|R.S.||Todd||Pte||283||Raetihi, NZ; transf'd to Stalag 18C|
|William||Toner||Spr||233||NZ; transf'd to Stalag 18C|
|Leonard Raymond||Verrall||Pte||263||Auckland, NZ; also 955/GW|
|Denys Henry||Vette||Dvr||4 RMT||723||Te Awamatu, NZ|
|Jack R.||Webb||Spr||184||Auckland, NZ; also 1203/L|
|R.S.||Whale||Cpl||315||New Zealand; transf'd to Stal 383|
|J.R.||White||Pte||HQ 6 Div. AASC||96||Australia|
|George Steven||White||Spr||865||Nelson, NZ|
|J.R.||White||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||96||Sydney, Australia|
|H.G. (Darkie?)||Williams||Dvr||210||NZ; also 11096/GW|
|David Frew||Wood||Capt||RAMC||Glasgow, Scotland; killed in air-raid 18.12.44|
|S.||Wood||Hawkes Bay, NZ|
|J.S. (Jack)||Wooster||Pte||347||Christchurch, New Zealand|
The following people have kindly donated pictures and information relating to the Work Camp at Lavamund:
Dave Dolphin, son of Dvr Bill Dolphin,
Tony Barratt, son-in-law of Dvr Albert Griffiths, RASC.
Steve Currie, grandson of Spr George White, 2NZEF.
Brent Robinson, son of Gnr William Robinson, RA.
Anne Moir, daughter of Pte Garnet Moir, 20th Bn., 2NZEF.
Ian Raw, son of Sgmn Robert Raw, R Sigs.
Linda Winter, daughter of Sgmn Frank Morris, R Sigs,
Pauline van Kampen, daughter of Pte Len Verrall, 2NZEF,
Mike De Vere, son of Sgmn Arthur De Vere, R Sigs.
David Fall, son of L/Cpl James Fall, R Sigs
Sue Courtney, daughter of Pte Paul Churton, 18th Bn., 2NZEF
Wendy Gouveia, grand-daughter of Pte Dick Horan, NZMC
Peter Burborough, grandson of Dvr Cyril Burborough, RASC.
Janet Tyne, daughter of Billy Lakin, RA.
Strictly speaking, the 'dam' at Lavamund is a Hydroelectric Power Station. The photographs that I have collected showing wartime construction seem to indicate that the POWs worked on two separate Power Stations: one at Schwabeck (sometimes called Schwabegg) and the other a few kilometres downstream at Lavamund. These two Power Stations still exist. The pictures at the top of this page are of Lavamund.
Photos from Anne Moir and Robin Elliott.
The 'Lavamund' Camp was, in fact, two separate camps. The camp close to the Lavamund project was located at Pudlach on the south side of the river. The camp near to Schwabeck was at Wunderstatten, on the north side of the river. The two POW camps appear to have been independent but there seems to have been some movement of POWs from one to the other. The Schwabeck dam was completed in 1942 and the whole camp was moved to Lavamund. It is impossible as yet to determine which of the photos below were taken at which camp. However, the first two Camp views were most likely taken at Wunderstatten.
I am indebted to Sue Courtney, daughter of Pte Paul Churton, 2NZEF, for the information relating to the location of the two camps.
|Wunderstatten Camp view||Wunderstatten Camp view||Pudlach Camp view||Pudlach Camp view|
|Wunderstatten Camp view||Wunderstatten Camp view|
|Large group||Large group (No3)||Large group (No4)||Large group (No5)|
|Large group (No6)||Large group (No8)||Large group (No9)||Large group|
|Large group||Small group||Large group||Australian group|
|Frank Morris group||Len Verrall group||Verrall & Williams group||Garnet Moir group|
|Paul Churton group||Alf Hedges group||James Fall group||Robert Dickson group|
|Adam Adamson group||Billy Lakin group||Large group||Jack Swinnerton group 1|
|Jack Swinnerton group 2||Max Elliott group||Stan Peters group 1||Stan Peters group 2|
|Ted Hardy group|
|Hut group 1||Hut group 2||Hut group 3||Hut group 4|
|Hut group 5||Hut group 6||Hut group 7||Max Elliott group|
|Stanley Peters group||Cyril Burborough group||Small group at work||Mechanical shovel at work|
|Stanley Peters group||Stanley Peters group||Thomas McGreevy on left|
|Christmas group||Paul Churton group||"The Old Gang Line-up"||Williams, Robertson, Raw|
|Snowball fight||Group in snow||Group in snow||Camp Notice Board|
|Wally Cartmill||Max Elliott||Magazine Party, July 1942|
Photos provided by Brent Robinson and Robin Elliott
|Christmas Carols||Choir names||Choir names||Melody Makers|
|Melody Makers Set||Melody Makers||Melody Makers||Bill Robinson|
|Johnny Miles||Lefty Hills||Ronnie & Nigel||Bill Mulhall|
|Maori Pacific Island Band||Max, Jimmy & Sid|
Brent Robinson has sent most of the following pictures, brought back by his father, Gnr William Robinson, RA, who survived Dunkirk only to be captured in Greece. The Christmas Carols Programme is certainly from Lavamund. The other pictures are most likely from there. The last two pictures, of the rugby teams were provided by Anne Moir.
|Christmas Carols||Choir names||Choir names||Melody Makers|
|English 7-a-side||Scottish Soccer Team||Scottish 7-a-side||Thomas McGreevy Team|
|Soccer team, 1943||Soccer team||Group, 1943||Boxers|
|Rugby team||Rugby team||Soccer team||Rugby team|
|Rugby team||Rugby match||Soccer match||Musicians|
Anne Moir has sent the following set of pictures of Football and Rugby teams taken at Lavamund. Most of the photos have the names of the players underneath.
|Winners, March 1943||Runners-up, Spring 1943||Third Team||Fourth Team|
|Lavamund Camp Soccer XI||Lavamund Camp Rugby XI||Newspaper cutting||Newspaper cutting|
|Rugby at Whit, 1943||Camp Cooks|
Marilyn Wreakes has transcribed the dairy that Gnr Arthur Reasebeck, RA, kept during his captivity. From 1941 until 1945 he worked on the dams, mainly at Schwabeck. His account gives a great insight into the day-to-day activities of a POW working on these projects. I have extracted the entries beginning with his arrival at 10030/GW in June 1941. At first, he made the effort to detail his activities but by early 1943, his entries had reduced to a list of letters and parcels received and their contents.
The following are the entries for the month of September 1941. At that time, Arthur was working on the Schwabeck site.
Day shift again this week. Started day on same job as Friday night & finished same about 1500 hrs of which time we went onto clearing timber still knocked off at 1900 hrs. During the latter period we succeeded in getting quite a number of apples from the many fruit trees round the job. Breakfast coffee, Dinner pototes, barley soup, vegetable stew, Tea potatoes, porridge, bread
Nothing much doing again at the dam today. We went onto digging & had a very easy day. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potato, soup, vegetable stew, cucumber & potato salad, Tea potatoes, barley & potato, bread
Gherkins in canteen today at 50 pfennings per ½ kilo
mit stafal (?) again today on and this rather cushy job. Jam and margarine in canteen today at 70 pfenning the two issues. Received and wrote weekly card home. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, soup, sauerkraut, Tea potatoes, macaroni, bread
On small but very deep hole today the chute of which is exceptionally dirty to work under owing to its great length. The two pumps in this hole broke down about 11.15 and the hole filled with water thus stopping work there. After dinner we went on digging a very tedious job which we were very glad to leave. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, barley soup, vegetable stew, Tea potatoes, potato soup flavoured tomato, bread
Working round turbines today a great job with a fairly easy throw from each chute in bit of heavy reinforcement round about. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, soup, potato stew, Tea potatoes, maize, coffee, bread
Working round turbines again today. Still a steady easy job as we have to use the vibranators nearly all the time owing to not being able to shovel much. Finished at 1600 hrs as usual on Saturdays now. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, tomato & vege soup, cucumber & potato salad, Tea potatoes
Once again the usual barrack and Commandant inspection this morning. The afternoon was a couple of football matches (one soccer & one rugger). After these was held a trial of a couple of chaps charged with stealing a rather depressing affair but necessary I am afraid. In evening was usual church service followed by concert. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, meat & vegetable stew, soup, Tea beetroot, white bread, bread
Nights again this week so that we had a long weekend once more. The day passes very slowly for us on Mondays as we have not to make up for lost sleep like on other days on this shift. Had a rather monotonous job also tonight clearing up ready for concreting tower in centre. After this went on tipping for a couple of hours till 6.30. There was a spot of bother tonight owing to quite a number being found asleep and missing from jobs.
Mondays breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, barley soup, vegetable stew, Tea potatoes, porridge, bread
Tuesday Pay parade this afternoon received 7.70 marks. Went on digging tonight as not enough concreting for us all. This turned out a very slow job so that time rather dragged. Tonight turned out coldest yet there being a temperature of 5 below zero roundabout 5.0 hrs. Breakfast coffee, Dinner thin white soup, sauerkraut, beetroot, Tea potatoes (2), beetroot, maize, bread
Breakfast coffee, Dinner tomato soup, sauerkraut, beetroot, Tea barley soup, coffee, bread. Had an exceptionally good & easy job tonight six of us were tipping a couple of trucks of ballast on side of river those going up at short 10 minute intervals. We split ourselves into groups of 2 each & so we all managed a spot of sleep by the side of a really good fire we made good work.
Butter, margarine, cigarette papers & lighter, toothpaste & brushes, boot polish, knives, drinks,(5) in canteen today usual mush to get these things & all was sold out by teatime. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, barley soup, tomato & vege stew, Tea potatoes, ground rice & potato, bread. Were told supper time were clearing hole ready for cement after went on job feeding endless conveyor with concrete.
Exceptionally tough job as all had to be handled by shovel & there was no break between trucks. The conveyor broke down however for about 1 ½ hrs so we did not have things quite as bad as they might have been. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, soup, veg stew & extra farm bread. Canteen stocked again today.
Finish night shift tonight start work at 1600 hrs & knock off 2400 hrs with 1 hr off at 1900 hrs after which we return to camp. Another very easy job tonight hooking up trucks at foot of railway up river bank from 22 30 trucks stopped coming so we did a spot of sloughing till supper. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, bread, soup, sauerkraut, extra soup and veg & sauerkraut, a lot for work from cookhouse, Tea(or supper) potatoes, coffee then usual soup at dam.
Today inspection parade did not come off owing to rain this morning but the barracks were as usual inspected. The weather cleared towards dinnertime and footballers went out for the usual weekend games. After tea was church service & then wrestling matches in place of concert. Post cards not yet in.
Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, barley soup, vegetable stew, Tea meat, vegetable salad, white bread, bread
Day shift once again. Messing about all morning off one job clearing up to another one and finally got a job on top of one of the towers about 11.30 clearing up before dinner & then wheeling concrete in barrows from railway to job. There was a sharp downpour of rain during afternoon but we managed to shelter & keep dry while it lasted. Cigarettes and butter in canteen. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, soup, veg stew, Tea maize, milk, bread
Tipping for a time this morning then carrying timber afterwards going on shoveling concrete on temporary dam wall. Cards in today sent Bettys weekly one off & another to Mum & Dad. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, soup, veg stew. Tea potatoes, porridge, bread
Tipping today on bridge. This is not a bad job but as we are in such an exposed ___________ (for bosses etc passing over bridge) our parties (______________ ) keeps on moving sweeping up while waiting for trucks. Also today starts a no smoking ban on us while on the job. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, soup, veg stew, Tea potatoes, barley loaf, bread
Went sick last night as my face has again come up was excused of work for today and _________ on job of unloading railway truck of the much awaited Red Cross parcels. We were issued with 50 cigarettes from these but must await till parcels themselves are sorted before they are issued most likely Sunday. Excused work again tonight. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potatoes, soup, veg & tomato stew, Tea potatoes, maize, bread
Light duty again today. Was not clamped for fatigues in morning but after dinner went with party to empty refuse tasks only half hours job. There was quite a stir in our barrack room when the lads arrived back from work at 1600 hr this afternoon & got their parcels. We also got weekly letter card and an extra postcard so that tonight we had a busy time writing home and bagging parcel contents. The extra card is to be issued once a fortnight. Breakfast coffee, Dinner potato soup, veg stew, Tea potatoes, potato soup, bread
No inspection or parade today but we had to clear up the room as usual, just in case. There was no football this afternoon due to lack off support most likely as everybody was celebrating the parcel issue. Church service and then concert in evening. Beer & lemonade in canteen today. Breakfast coffee, Dinner - potatoes, barley soup, veg stew, Tea coffee, beetroot, salad, white bread
Night shift this week again. I am again excused work. I did not go in went sick in morning and on suggestion of or MO went to see German MO in afternoon about my face he extracted a tooth as both think this will effect a cure at last. Breakfast coffee, Dinner - soup, veg stew, Tea potatoes, white soup, bread
Same again today. Light duties around camp. Breakfast coffee, Dinner - soup, veg stew, Tea potatos, porridge (with macaroni), bread, salt, butter, jam issues today at 83 the lot
Once again excused duty for the day. Breakfast coffee, Dinner - soup, veg stew, bread, Tea potatoes, potatoes & macaroni soup
Work tonight started on tipping job till midnight then went on digging. Red Cross cigarettes issued today. Breakfast coffee, Dinner soup, veg stew, Tea potatoes, white soup. Bread
Tinned meat is part of our RC parcels issued today. 1 tin per man each one being issued in accordance with orders from Wolfsberg. This order appears (from what we are told) to be partly in retaliation against escapes and also for reasons of health due to our diet up to present not having meat stuff in its makeup. This order holds for all tinned stuff as the German authorities class all tinned goods as conserves.
Remainder of parcels issued today, actually by a bit of wangling as the order was for 1 tin each issued. No work for night shift tonight so we have Saturday night in bed for a change. Post cards issued today so wrote and posted my weekly one to Betty. Breakfast coffee, Dinner barley soup, sauerkraut, veg stew, Tea potatoes, milk, bread, butter, jam
Weekly parade inspection then Commandants parade in morning. Nothing doing in afternoon but usual church service in evening followed by wrestling matches. Finishing earlier at 1530 hrs owing to the days getting shorter it is now quite dark at 2000 hrs. We therefore held a bit of a singsong in our barrack room and so passed the evening quite well. Breakfast coffee, Dinner soup & veg stew, potatoes, Tea milk, beetroot, white bread
Day shift once more, there was no concrete being poured today so we were split up into groups and different other jobs. I was with party taking down timbering and clearing up ready for concreting. Breakfast coffee, Dinner soup, sauerkraut, tea potatoes, porridge. Since getting our RC parcels there has not been the usual dashing about for back ups on meals in fact it is now a common thing for quite a large amount to be left over and nobody wanting more
Timber shifting again today the day passed rather well till about 1500 hrs, after which time dragged and we were glad when the buzzer went. Breakfast coffee, Dinner soup, veg stew, Tea potatoes, maize, porridge, bread
Working at cooking station today unloading & stacking lunches rather a monotonous job but quite a change from the dam. We were rather late getting back to camp tonight owing to have to wait for lorry back arrived back about 1845 hrs instead of just after 1500 hrs as usual. Breakfast coffee, Dinner soup, meat, veg & sauerkraut, stew, Tea potatoes, potato soup, bread
You can read the whole diary here.
In 1976, ex-POW Garnet Moir from New Zealand, visited the scene of his wartime captivity with his wife and daughter. As luck would have it, the taxi-driver they hired in Klagenfurt spoke good English and interpreted for Garnet when he toured the Lavamund dam and met a local man who had been a guard at the POW camp.
|Garnet Moir in Lavamund High Street||On Lavamund Dam, with wife, daughter Anne and Dam worker||With ex-Camp Guard|
As part of the Wolfsberg Weekend in July 2013, the visitors were taken for a tour of the Schwabeck Plant. We began with a lecture on the history of the dam and the involvement of POWs and slave labourers in its construction. We were then taken down to the dam itself for a walkabout. A bright beautiful day and an unforgettable experience
Date of visit: 25 October 1941
Camp Leader: Sgt. E Atkinson
Doctor: Captain Thomas I V Ferguson
Strength: 454 British (209 English, 178 New Zealanders, 52 Australians, 1 Canadian, 1 Irishman (the doctor)) 85 new prisoners expected to arrive the next day.
Situation: This Labour Detachment is situated on a level with a large barrage in course of construction, and on which the prisoners are working. The camp itself is some distance from the works and consists of a series of hutments, similar to those which are occupied by the German, Slovene and Croatian civilian workers, whose camp adjoins that of the prisoners.
Quarters: The prisoners live in three wooden hutments, simple but sufficiently comfortable. They are well aired and well lit and easily heated by stoves. The men are housed in 16 large rooms, each holding 28 men. The double tiered wooden bunks have a palliasse and one blanket per man. In each room there is a wooden table and some stools. Smaller hutments are reserved for stores, canteen, shower and toilet rooms, kitchen, etc.
Food: The prisoners have the rations due to those who do heavy work and told us that they were sufficiently well fed, especially since the British Red Cross parcels have started arriving regularly. On the other hand the quality of the provisions is not to the taste of the British prisoners, but five prisoners are now working in the kitchen and will in future have every facility for preparing the food to their liking. In addtion a field kitchen in the courtyard and the stoves in the rooms allow the prisoners to prepare the food received in their Red Cross parcels. Each man receives 350g of bread a day.
Clothing: The state of clothing is unsatisfactory. The majority of the prisoners are wearing French uniforms, often of extremely poor quality. These uniforms wear out very rapidly. As the prisoners work in all weathers, it is difficult to dry them and sickness due to chills is frequent in the Camp. The prisoners have no change of underlinen and the majority of them have no socks. Their shoes are in a lamentable condition.
Luckily we saw the advice of the arrival of an important consignment of clothing from Stalag XVIIIA, which will permit of the re-equipment of a large number of prisoners. We also asked the officer who accompanied us, who was attached to Stalag XVIIIA, that all the British prisoners in the Labour Detachments should be provided with two sets of underclothing and two uniforms, especially in the winter. There are actually very large stocks of underwear and uniforms in the Camp stores, some of which came from the British Red Cross.
Work: The prisoners work on the neighbouring barrage. They work as labourers, carpenters and embankment builders, many of them being specialists. The men work in day and night shifts and each do 10½ hours actual work a day. The work is very heavy. All the prisoners have 24 hours rest a week.
Pay: The basic rate is 70 pfennigs a day. In addition certain specialists or good workers receive bonuses which can double their pay. Overtime is not paid.
Canteen: The usual toilet articles can be bought; sometimes there is beer and 120 French cigarettes per man per month for the sum of 3 RM.
Hygiene: There is a hutment for toilet purposes, with taps and showers, which allows the prisoners hot and cold water for their daily ablutions. On the other hand the latrines are far too small and not at all hygienic. Their enlargement has already been undertaken and it is to be hoped that the actual work will begin shortly.
Infirmary: This comprises 26 double tier beds, all provided with a pillow, and a cotton foot-covering keeps the blanket on. There are many patients, due to the very bad clothing conditions. We saw several patients suffering from chills, rheumatism, bronchitis, etc. There are also several cases of accident of all kinds while at work. Simple cases are kept in the Infirmary and the others are sent to the Lazaret at Stalag XVIIIA or to the civil hospital in the town. The Camp, however, being some distance from any place of any size, it is impossible to see how transport could be effected in case of emergency. We were told that it was impossible to get an ambulance. Some solution should be sought while there is yet time. Up to date there has been one fatal accident, and two very serious falls causing cerebral disturbance.
A British doctor, assisted by 3 medical orderlies, is attached permanently to the Camp, and a German civilian doctor visits the Infirmary 3 times a week.
Intellectual and moral assistance: The prisoners have no means of amusing themselves, apart from some musical instruments which they have been able to buy. They have not received a single book and they have no games. They go to play football outside the camp on Sundays. The prisoners would very much like to have a room for recreation and reading, as at present they have no Common Room.
There is no Catholic religious service and the Roman Catholics would be happy if the French priest from Stalag XVIIIA could visit them once a month. The Camp Leader acts as chaplain to the Protestants.
Mails: All the prisoners write two letters and 4 cards per month and the members of the medical staff twice as many. Nearly all the English have received news from their families, although the New Zealanders and the Australians have not yet received any.
The collective consignments of food from the British Red Cross have arrived at the Camp and each man receives one per week. These parcels are greatly appreciated by the prisoners.
Conversation with the Camp Leader and the Doctor: We talked with them for a long time, without witnesses. The prisoners are satisfied with the camp on the whole, and good relations exist with the NCO's in charge of the Camp Guard. In addition to the chief desires expressed in the report above, the following desires were raised:
The doctor would like a small outfit for urgent surgical cases.
The Camp Leader would be glad to have a copy of the Geneva Convention in English.
The prisoners protest strongly against the manner in which they were transported from Greece to Germany. They were 5 days in the train, locked in cattle trucks, the floors of which were covered with the evacuations of prisoners suffering from dysentery. They had practically nothing to eat and drink. Many of the prisoners are still suffering from the effects of this journey. One of them died of this dysentery a few days after his arrival at Stalag XVIIIA.