Daily Archives: 4 February, 2010

YouTube picks

Its been a while since I’ve shared some of my favourite videos from YouTube… so here are some recent videos I think you might like!

German Newsreel footage of Operation Market Garden

I’ve found this fascinating German newsreel covering the battle of Arnhem. Whats really interesting about it is that part of the footage was filmed when my Granddad was jumping at Ginkel Heath – those Germans are firing at my Granddad. Its also fascinating to see the Nazi Propaganda Machine at work.

HMS Invincible 1982

There is a pretty ridiculous conspiracy theory out there that HMS Invincible was either sunk or damaged during the Falklands. War. As this video shows, any sane human being will be able to work out that its ludicrous.

Grenadier Guards Band in 1940

Heres a British Pathe clip of the Grenadier Guards Band playing in Trafalgar Square in 1940. Fittingly, they’re playing ‘British Grenadiers’.

Biffy Clyro – Many of Horror live

And finally, something from the best band in Britain today…

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Pompey POW’s: Prisoners of the Germans

Prisoners at Stalag XIB, April 1945

Prisoners at Stalag XIB, April 1945

Recenty I looked at the large amount of Portsmouth men who were captured by the Japanese, and subsequently died in captivity.

Many servicemen were also captured by the Germans. As well as Army personnel captured at Dunkirk, many men were also captured when their aircraft were shot down over Germany. Many men were also captured on Crete, in Greece, in North Africa – particularly at Tobruk. Later in the war over 6,000 men were captured during the battle of Arnhem, including my Granddad.

Although there were isolated cases of brutality and atrocities, the Germans generally treated their British prisoners in accordance with the Geneva Convention. Although conditions deteriorated as the war drew on, fatalities did not reach the rate of those held by the Japanese.

Signalman Alfred Richards, of I Corps Royal Signals, died on 4 June 1940. Interestingly, he is buried in Cadzand War Cemetery in Holland. Why Holland? Well, Holland had been invaded by the Germans in May and quickly over-run. But British forces hadn’t set foot in Holland at all in 1940. Whats more, the Dunkirk evacuation ended on 4 June. It looks very much like Signalman Richards had been captured during the fall of France, and died on his way to a Prisoner of War Camp in Germany. Richards was 31 and from Stamshaw.

Guardsman David Lyons, 32 and from North End, was serving with the 3rd Battalion of the Grenadier Guards. He died on 13 October 1940, and is buried in Enghien, Belgium. Given that the battle of France had ended in June, it would seem that Guardsman Lyons was a POW. Perhaps he had been too badly wounded to be moved to a camp in Germany?

One Portsmouth man died after reaching a Prisoner of War Camp. Gunner Kenneth Lanyon, 26 and from Southsea, was captured serving with 194 Battery, 60 Heavy Anti-Aircraft Regiment Royal Artillery during the Battle of France. He died on 30 December 1940, and is buried in Cracow Rakowiki Cemetery in Poland. Several Prisoner of War Camps were close to Cracow.

Remarkably, it seems that none of the Portsmouth men who died whilst serving in the RAF were taken prisoner. Evidence tells us that of the several hundred Portsmouh airmen who’s planes were shot down over Europe, all of them were killed. This demonstates just how dangerous the air war really was.

One Portsmouth man was a victim of German war crimes. In November 1942 Sapper Ernest Bailey of the 9 (Airborne) Field Company, Royal Engineers was captured during a glider-borne raid on a heavy water plant in Norway. He was captured by the Germans and murdered on 19 November. Bailey – 31 and from Paulsgrove – is buried in Stavanger War Cemetery.

Some Prisoners died even shortly after the war in Europe was over and they were released. Private William Starling of the Royal Army Ordnance Corps died on 14 May 1945, and is buried in Prague War Cemetery, Czech Republic. He probably died in a Prisoner of War Camp in the region.

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