Work Camp  296/L & 233/L

Location: Ratkersburg

Type of work: Farm work/Road work

Men of Confidence: Sgt R Nancarrow & P.Off. E Collins

Number of Men: 24

Known to be present

Sam Brearley Cpl RASC 5925 Bacup, UK; transf'd to Stalag 383
Ed Collins Petty Off. RN 7629 MOC (1943)
Haven John Collins Pte 4 Res. M.T. Coy 4704 New Zealand (possible)
John Leonard Dickinson Tpr RAC 6178 Hull; also 1971/L
Jim Mollinson  Pte  2/6 Inf. Bn.  4774 Australia 
Rich V Nancarrow Cpl 2NZEF 4705 New Zealand; MOC (1943)
Dick Parsons  Gnr RA  4209  
Norman Scott L/Cpl CMP 5924 Bacup, UK; capt'd Kalamata
John Dermott (Snowy)  Troy  Pte  25 Bn.  3976 New Zealand; murdered 14.5.42 (Weinberg) 
Ernie  Walker  Pte  RAVC  4372   

Date of visit: 23 February 1943

General Description

These two commandos live in a former oil mill since 5.2.43. There are 24 men, all working in various farmhouses of the district.

Interior arrangement

These sleep in a very big room on ordinary iron beds. Two iron stoves of a good size furnish sufficient heat and can be used for the cooking of private food.

Bathing and washing facilities

These are adequate. Once a week the men can have hot showers in the military barracks of Ratkersburg.

Food and Cooking

The food is prepared in the farms where they work.

Medical attention and sickness

When a prisoner of war gets ill he is allowed to go to a civilian doctor in town. The local military hospital is also at the disposal of the two camps. There is some delay actually in dental care, as the local civilian dentist has too many civilians to deal with. The delegates suggested to send the worst cases to the dental station in Wagna.


The clothing question in these two commandos is being resolved in the coming week, i.e. they will get their second uniform from Graz presently.


In this camp, Saturday afternoon is not free and the cleaning of the rooms was done on Sundays. From now on 4 Orderlies will do the cleaning on Saturdays in an established turn.

Serious complaints were brought to the inspectors' knowledge about the German NCO in charge of this camp. The commander of the guards battalion who speaks fluent English interviewed Sgt Nancarrow privately. The NCO in question will be discharged of his command consecutively to Nancarrow's revelations.

General impression

This camp will be very good, if the new German NCO is up to his task. The two British Men of Confidence are very capable and the spirit of the men is reasonably high.

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