Work Camp 11072 GW
Type of work: Railway
Man of Confidence: Cpl James C Johnston, POW 1732
Number of Men: 138
|T.||Aitken||Gnr||NZ Arty||4195||Mosgiel, New Zealand|
|L.||Albrey||Pte||39408||Foxton, New Zealand|
|W.||Bagnall||Bdr||RA||39671||Stoke on Trent|
|Jack||Bloxham||Spr||RE||1446||Coventry; also Gmund|
|Graeme Stainton||Bretherton||Pte||19 Bn.||4183||Wanganui, NZ|
|D.||Cameron||Pte||18 Inf. Tng. Bn.||3747||Queensland, Aust.|
|L.||Corey||Pte||H.Q. 1 Cps.||3921||Brisbane, Aust.|
|A.J.||Corpse||Pte||H.Q. Gd. Bn.||3903||NSW, Aust.|
|Albert||Freeman||Farrier||RAVC||1715||Lincoln; also 11093/GW, 10029/GW|
|L.||Gallard||Pte||2/2 Inf. Bn.||3839||NSW, Aust.|
|C.||Gibbons||Pte||2/11 Inf. Bn.||3782||WA, Aust.|
|Frank||Hamer||Pte||21 Bn.||4218||New Zealand|
|K.E.||Harris||Cpl||2/6 Inf. Bn.||3360||Victoria, Aust.|
|Laurie||Hataraka||Pte||1500||Bay of Plenty, NZ|
|Thomas J.||Healey||Pte||1 Cps. H.Q.||3769||Victoria, Aust.|
|R.H.||Howes||Pte||2/32 Inf. Bn.||39334||WA, Aust.|
|W.H.||Hull||Pte||2/15 Inf. Bn.||32021||Queensland, Aust.|
|James C||Johnston||Cpl||RASC||1732||Edinburgh; MOC|
|Victor Lawrence||Lindsay||Gnr||1 A/TK Rg.||3794||Australia|
|Henry Thomas||Maher||Pte||2/2 Inf. Bn.||3825||NSW, Aust.|
|J.||McDonnell||Pte||H.Q. 1 Cp.||3615||Queensland, Aust.|
|E.||McFadgen||Gnr||NZ Arty||39373||Auckland, NZ|
|C.||McMillan||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||2857||Victoria, Aust.|
|Owen J.||Minogue||Pte||H.Q. Gd. Bn.||4043||Victoria, Aust.|
|Fred||Murcott||Gnr||RA||2596||Chesterfield; also 10029/GW|
|Arthur Edward||Ninness||Pte||2/2 Inf. Bn.||3923||NSW, Aust.|
|Lionel C.||Paynter||Pte||2/3 Inf. Bn.||4052||NSW, Australia; capt'd Greece|
|J.||Porteus||Pte||H.Q. 6 Div. AASC||3890||NSW, Aust.|
|R.E.||Price||Pte||H.Q. Gd. Bn.||3875||NSW, Aust.|
|Robert H.||Randall||Cpl||RE||5561||Warwick, UK|
|G.||Record||Pte||Hamp.||39632||Isle of Wight|
|D.W.||Reid||Pte||2/6 Inf. Bn.||3765||Victoria, Aust.|
|William (Wally)||Robb||Gnr||RA||5330||Dundonald, Scotland|
|W.||Rutter||Gnr||NZ Arty||8630||South Island, NZ|
|C.||Sanders||Pte||Essex Rgt||39689||Dagenham, Essex|
|E.||Scully||Pte||North Island, NZ|
|E.||Shaddock||Cpl||2/2 Inf. Bn.||3791||NSW, Aust.|
|Ernest Daniel||Shelswell||Pte||1 Cp. Tp. Sp. Col.||4000||Queensland, Aust.; also 10024/HV|
|E.||Sneller||Pte||39368||North Island, NZ|
|Stan||Stockley||Pte||18 Bn.||4170||New Zealand; also Matrei|
|J.||Williamson||Gnr||RA||3193||Crewe; also 11010/GW|
|Jack||Woodward||Pte||1 Cps. Tp. Sply.||4030||Brisbane, Australia; violin|
|Albert Freeman||Jack Woodward||Robert Randall|
|Linley, Read, Moore||Queenslanders||Robb, Sinclair, Turkington + 1|
Thanks to Jean Riding, Dave Freeman and Joe Woodward for the photographs.
This camp is situated in an open field near a railway line some miles outside Klagenfurt. The compound comprises just the one large barrack, there is practically no ground otherwise.
Lighting in the camp is good. Fuel for heating is very scarce.
Bathing and washing facilities
The washhouse is rather badly equipped in that there are only 27 washing bowls for 102 men; furthermore the one boiler holds only enough water for about 50 men. The prisoners on the other hand, are allowed to go swimming each Saturday and Sunday for two hours.
Food and Cooking
The food is cooked by the prisoners themselves. No complaint. As for the cooking of Red Cross food, the fuel question is making it somewhat of a problem, as the supplies have to be divided between the washhouse and the private cooking.
Medical attention and sickness
There is an acknowledged sanitator in the camp and he has adequate supplies of medicaments. Sick prisoners are transferred to the Camp Lazaret in Klagenfurt (Weidmannsdorf).
Dental treatment in Klagenfurt by a civilian dentist.
Everything in order.
The laundry is washed by the men themselves.
Money and Pay
There is a small canteen but poorly stocked. The men urgently require toilet paper and razor blades. This will be transmitted to the YMCA by the Delegate of the Protecting Power.
Recreation and exercise
The prisoners are able to play football and cricket.
Parcels arrive regularly. Mail is delivered once weekly.
The Man of Confidence states that they all consider the size of the compound as being totally out of keeping with the number of inmates. There is neither a mess- or a day-room nor a hall for theatrical entertainments. Furthermore, new crockery is needed, some of the men drinking out of empty tins at present. Also they would like to go to a cinema sometime.
All these points were discussed with the Accompanying Officer who promised to find satisfactory arrangements.
94 men. There is no day-room in this camp. The firm has promised one and the wood is already available, but the means of transport were not yet accorded by the Riechsbahn. The Accompanying Officer on the demand of the Delegate insisted that the barrack containing the day-room must be built before the cold season sets in. A new cook-house is just being finished at will be at the camp's disposal in a few days. No other complaints.
174 British and 2 USA prisoners of war. This camp has considerably increased in number as about 80 men have joined from Italian captivity. In the new barrack was no night latrine and the accompanying Officer gave orders to have one installed. There too, the blankets are much worn out and were ordered to be exchanged. No other complaints. This is a fairly good camp and the man of confidence reported good understanding and personal contact with his firm and the camp authorities.
(From an account written by a reporter attached to the 8th Army, May 1945.)
Two days before the arrival of out men the Germans allowed the prisoners to move about freely in the town. As our mobile column entered KLAGENFURT and while the Divisional Commander was accepting the surrender of the German Corps Commander in the barracks, the freed Prisoners of War were thronging the streets to greet Sixth Armoured Division.
A British Corporal took me down to the Camp. The Union Jack was flying. The men had put it up that morning, despite the threats of SS men. These SS were marching to captivity and had not yet been disarmed. They avowed their intention of shooting down the flag. Luckily for them, discretion prevailed and the flag was left flying.
Most of them were captured in Greece or Crete. They told me that for the first six months they had a particularly hard time. During that time, their weekly ration – and Red Cross parcels had not yet begun to come through – consisted of the following: Bread and biscuits, 1 lb., Rice, 1 lb. 8 oz., Sugar and Honey, 1 and a half oz., Salt fish, 2 oz., Tomato puree, 6 oz., Total 2 lb. and 14 and a half oz.
After their capture, they marched for 5 days with practically no food. Again, en route for Austria, they entrained with only a tin of Bully and 2 Biscuits each. They were given nothing else except Water and Soup by the Yugoslav Red Cross at Belgrade. During their early days in Austria, the food situation was acute. They were given equal rations with the German soldiers and sometimes more. Nevertheless, this was on the starvation level. Then the Red Cross parcels began to come through and these saved their lives.
Working on the railway, constructing their own Air Raid Shelter, making a soccer pitch, organizing concerts, marching in the village on Armistice Day, burying a comrade, these men from all over the Empire, lived in complete harmony, with a firm determination to show the Germans the kind of men the British are. They were able to receive news every day with two radios obtained from Austrian Partisans and a crystal set made in the camp. These sets were concealed in ingenious places during the numerous searches.
The camp has now been taken over by
the 2nd Battalion, The Rifle Brigade who were the first 8th
Army troops into Austria. The men look extremely fit and their one thought is to
get home as soon as possible. '