My late father, Alan Jessup was held at Stalag VIIIB from June 1940, until he was repatriated in October 1943. He was captured at Hazebrouck on May 28th 1940, en route to Dunkirk and I believe was marched most of the way to the camp in Poland. Like so many men, he spoke little about his time as a prisoner of war, however I have a number of items from that time, kept by my mother, which may be of interest.
The only prisoner who he mentioned by name was the late Sydney DeHaan, who went on to found the Saga Holiday firm, and indeed he met with him after the war when we stayed in his first hotel around 1950.
I still have a watercolour caricature of my father, painted in the camp by Roland Ford another prisoner, and also a rather faded photo taken in the camp of this painting displayed on a wall, along with similar watercolours of other prisoners. Does anyone else still have one of these paintings or recognise their father or themselves?
I would be interested to hear from anyone who knows what became of Roland Ford, obviously quite a talented artist, or indeed has any memories or knowledge of my father.
Received: January 2005
From: Pat Jessup
On behalf of: His late father, Alan Jessup