The British Prisoner of War, Volume I No. 3, March 1918

26 THE BRITISH PRISONER OF WAR. We are glad to hear from the President of the Help Committee at Bayreuth that a number of prisoners who were moved from Limburg to Bayreuth in the early autumn are getting their parcels forwarded to them from Limburg. When 800 prisoners are suddenly transferred from one camp to another of course it means that there will abe gap in the delivery of their parcels. We did our best to help the officials in the censor’s office at Limburg to re-direct the parcels to these pri­soners by sending them the new addresses of the men who had been transferred. We should add that the Bread Bureau at Berne which sent us the first news of the moving of these men to Bayreuth sent a bulk supply of bread to them and a further supply of such food and tpilet necessaries as was available thus to some extent filling the gap above referred Thereto. could be no better example than this sudden transfer of men of the necessity for maintaining a reasonable amount of bulk supplies under proper management in the hands of the British Help Committees in the main camps in Germany. Two officers writing from Holzminden state that on Christmas Day a collection was made for the Red Cross and that officers and orderlies contributed between them 2289. “as a Christmas offering to try and show our appreciation and admiration for the noble work.” What makes this gift if possible more remark­able for its generosity is that though the parcels of the Central Committee had arrived in time for Christ­mas many of the privately sent parcels had not reached the camp by the 25th of December. The French Prisoners of War Help Committee in Chemnitz have shown great kindness to the British prisoners arriving therefrom Eussian Poland. They gave them 1772 kilos of biscuits and as these British prisoners got nothing for Christmas owing to their move the gift of the French Help Committee was very gratefully accepted. Coy.-Sgt.-Major A.W. Francis, President of the British Help Committee at Chemnitz, asked us to write to the President of the F6d6ration National dAssistance des Prisonniers de Guerre 63 Avenue des Champs Elys^es Paris to thank the F 6d6ration on behalf of the British prisoners of war in Chemnitz which we have been very glad to do. The knotty question of sending parcels to Con­stance has been a subject of enquiry. As most people know from time to time British prisoners awaiting exchange have been detained in this town for weeks together. The problem of how to feed these men (to whom parcels are not forwarded from their camps in Germany) has been solved by our sending out special parcels containing non-perishable articles of food to the care of Mr. Mayne Red Cross Commissioner in Berne, who will use the parcels at his Indiscretion. this way we hope to avert the possibility of any of our men going hungry during their stay in this frontier town. The English barrack at Friedrichsfeld was burnt to the ground on the 9th of January this year as well as the Russian barrack bread store tailors and shoe­makers shop and the parcel office. I twas very unlucky that the parcel office should contain anew mail which had arrived the day before all of which was burnt. Some of the letters referring to this fire will be found on page 35 of this journal as we think it will interest people to read an aocount from eye-witnesses of what happenpd. The only satisfactory thing about the fire was that no one seems to have been hurt. On Saturday evening the 23rd of February the third party of wounded men from Germany arrived Pancras Station. There were 25 officers 3 civilians and 225 men. At the request of the Prisoners Reception Committee the G.O.C. London District gave permission for the Guards band to play on the platform a concession that pleased everyone hugely. It was a fine clear evening and the moon shone brightly, and everyone hoped there would be no raid as they stood there waiting for the train. The first train arrived at 8.20 and was welcomed by the usual motor horns and sirens and cheers and when this din had subsided the strains of the band were to be heard, playing patriotic tunes and familiar airs “ Sweet H om Thee.” following members of the Recep­tion Committee were present: Adeline Duchess of Bed­ ford Lady MacDonnell Mrs. Ruthven Mrs. Chimside, Miss Chomley Mrs. Rivers Bulkeley Mrs. Pope- Hennessy Colonel Impey and Mr. Carbutt. They walked down the train presenting the Kings card of welcome to all the prisoners and distributing little bunches of primroses the most English of all wildflowers. The second train arrived at 9.15 and soon after 9.30 the last motor bearing prisoners from the station was cheered by the large crowd of people assembled outside. H.R.H. Princess Mary attended by Miss Gye and Sir Edward Wallington visited King Georges Hospital on Tuesday the 26th of February in order to seethe prisoners of war lately returned from Germany and Turkey. Princess Mary was met in the hall of the building by the Central Prisoners Reception Committee and the party proceeded in the lift to the fifth floor where the prisoners were assembled in two large rooms. Adeline Duchess of Bedford made a little speech welcoming the men home and Princess Mary gave to each man the chocolate and cigarettes provided by the Reception Committee. The difference between the men on their arrival at the station and the same men after two or three days in a good hospital was moat marked and many who felt too tired and too ill to cheer on Saturday night were able to applaud vigorously on Tuesday to show their appreciation of Princess Mary’s kindness incoming to see them.As showing the interest which the Personal Parcel Scheme has aroused it maybe mentioned that the records of the General Post Office show that during the three weeks between January 7th and January 29th, 5421 such parcels were despatched from this country. In addition we are informed by the Chief Postal Censor that 244 personal parcels had to be returned for failure to comply with the conditions governing the despatch of these parcels.-------?------- Epitaph—on a Comrade. “Past yon greenfield neath whispering trees Which nodding seem to guard your perfect rest, Sleep on though battlefields and troubled seas Divide your grave from all you loved the best. In life enfettered held by foreign hand Your spirit saddened bent to breaking nigh In one last struggle soared to land Victorious beyond the pale of Man. On high Ended all when comes the inevitable time For all to answer to the only Judge of man ‘You died a prisoner ?but the crime ?Defending those you loved your home—and mine.” E. II. B. (From the“ Doeberitz Gazette.”)
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