William Guthrie was my Father, he died in 1993. Amongst his papers I found a diary and maps (handwritten) with Red cross postcards and photos taken in the PoW Camp, mainly of men in women’s clothes doing theatricals. The paper is so fine and written in pencil that is it virtually unreadable, plus the land has changed nationality and name places have been changed since then.
My Dad said very little about his time as a PoW but he did mention one incident. We were at the wedding of a cousin in Northampton, the reception was held at the RAFA Club, downstairs was an exhibition of flying machines from the Ist World War to the present day. Dad looked at one plane and said… that b*****d got my breakfast….asked to explain he told the following tale. They had been marching for days, no break, little food, they liberated a lorry carrying Red Cross parcels and settled down to cook breakfast. They dug cooking trenches, had the lot going, porridge, bacon, eggs, you name it they cooked it. There was one building in the area, a large ruined barn. Suddenly the cry went up.. Air Raid, Air Raid, they all dived for cover as a Sterling Bomber came over and released it’s bombs. It totally missed the building and landed right in the cooking trenches, blowing breakfast to kingdom come.
Does anyone have any recollection of this incident? If so I would love to hear from you, maybe you can help me fill in the years my Dad was a PoW.
Received: January 2006
From: Helen Ufton
On behalf of: William Guthrie