Camp 1 - Grizedale Camp, Hawkshead, Ambleside, Cumbria (Westmoreland)

Discussion in 'UK PoW Camps' started by Pete Wood, Aug 28, 2019.

  1. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member

    This PoW Camp was for Officers and opened in 1939. The officers were housed in huts in the grounds of Grizedale Hall (now demolished).

    The Grid Reference, for the huts, is: 54°20'22.70"N 3° 1'19.68"W (please use this format for any corrections, so that forum members can enter them into Google Earth).

    By the end of the war, many high ranking officers were held at Grizedale Hall. The British authorities used hidden microphones, to listen in on 'private' conversations.

    The majority of the PoWs were German, but Italian Officers were also held at Grizedale.

    Books that mention Grizedale Camp include: The One That Got Away' and 'Thresholds of Peace'.

    Feel free to add any information and/or photos, on the camp or the PoWs held here. It would be good to hear from forum members who know the dates of operation - ie, when the camp was opened and closed.

    It would also be great to see any images of PoW mail, please.
  2. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member

    Red Cross Inspection Report, dated 1942:


    POSTAL ADDRESS: Prisoner of War Camp No.1, England.

    COMMANDANT: Major Veitch

    CAMP LEADER: Korvetten-Kapitan KRETSCHMER

    CAPACITY: 300 Officers

    STRENGTH: 146 officers, 20 batmen.


    DATE OF VISIT: 18th. March, 1942


    A kitchen garden, an acre in area, has recently been included in the boundary of the camp; the free space at the disposal of the occupants is at present 4 acres, including the football field.

    Thirty-two officers live in three hutments; twenty batmen live in another.


    Rations are those laid down by the regulation of February 1942. Korvetten-Kapitan Kretschmer estimates that the rations are still sufficient and he is counting on a balance of vegetables from the kitchen-garden. However, he drew the attention of the Delegate to the fact that the present rations are those of depÔt troops engaged on sedentary occupations which are inferior to those of depÔt troops on manual or active work and he considered that the batmen, by their occupation and the nature of their work, should benefit from a supplementary ration.


    The officers are all well-off for uniforms. It would be a good thing if they could benefit in the same way as their comrades at Camp No.15 by being able to buy, at a reasonable price, battle-dress in order to keep their uniforms while they work on terracing and at their gardens. They are well provided with underclothing, linen, socks, shoes and pyjamas. They are lacking in "police hats" (Feldmutzen).

    The batmen wear battle-dress, dyed n*****-brown and marked with red discs at the knee and the back. Their names and measurements will be communicated on the forms sent to this Delegation.

    Oberleutnant Moll, in charge of the postal service, has ticked off the 186 parcels of uniforms addressed by the German Red Cross to Camp No.1. From this verification it seems that 76 parcels have arrived safely; 17 parcels addressed to officers who have been transferred have been re-dispatched to the new address but their arrival has not yet been notified. Apart from these, a number of parcels containing uniforms, but not appearing on the list from the G.R.C., have arrived at the camp.


    Sixteen sacks containing letters and parcels had arrived in the camp the day before the Delegate's visit.

    The questions in the letter of March 3rd.1942, are as follows:-

    1. Total number of parcels with G.R.C. label sent between 16th.July and 31st.December 1941: 2257

    Total numbers of arrival by end February 1942: 1942

    Losses: 24%

    2. See under "Clothing."

    3. The dispatch of tobacco on August 8th. 1941, has not arrived; 16 parcels sent on August 14th. have arrived except for No.599; the dispatch of September 30th. has arrived complete; 17 parcels from the dispatch of October 3rd. have arrived (Nos. 1790 and 1796 are missing).

    4. Nothing has arrived.

    Oberleutnant Moll remarked that it is particularly the Standard ("Typenpakete") parcels which their families have ordered from the G.R.C. which do not arrive. He quoted his own case, for example: 22 parcels ordered and paid for by his family in 1941 - 4 have arrived and he would like to know the dates of dispatch. It is difficult to believe that there can have been a loss of such a quantity (82%).


    The state of health is excellent. Three slight cases in the infirmary, of whom there were two batmen suffering from rheumatism.


    The camp library has 500 German books; more books and in particular technical and language-course books are asked for. The camp receives regularly four daily papers and illustrated papers. Classes have been able to be organised, thanks to the material help from the G.R.C. The following classes were held during the winter: English, Italian, Spanish, Russian, history, mathematics and meteorology.

    Korvetten-Kapitan Kretschmer took note of the letter from the G.R.C. (11.12.41 Praesidium annexed to your note No.426). 1st Lieut. Knoeringer does not remember the contents of the letter to which it refers; he declares that if he made any criticisms on the choice of literature addressed to his camp, they certainly were not directed against the dispatches made by the G.R.C. which have always been very much appreciated.


    Camp No.1 intends to follow the example of No.15 and a vast programme for work has been studied by the specialists concerned. This consists of the drainage of a football field, the cultivation of a kitchen-garden, the construction of a swimming pool, the purchase of bee-hives etc. Sports tournaments are to be held and the suggestion is made that the G.R.C. should offer a prize or else a football strong enough to stand up against the barbed wire.

    Walks outside the camp take place daily in groups of 35.


    The canteen is supplied by NAAFI; see list in annexe of the goods theoretically in stock. Stocking becomes more and more difficult. From the canteen books, the following figures are given, among others, for February 1942:

    2,400 Cigarettes

    £31 Cigars

    46 1/2 lbs. Tobacco.


    All the requests made during the course of the previous visit with the exception of point 4, have been able to be satisfied. At the present time each officer has a pair of sheets and a pillow-slip. The camp is now supplied with electric current from the overhead grid system and the night-time lighting is now sufficient.

    The only two remaining requests are the following:-

    1. Speeding-up of the correspondence.

    2. Enquiry into the reason for the losses of Standard Parcels.


    Excellent; the attitude towards the camp administration is now normal and everyone seems to have decided to make the best of the situation. The idea of suggesting that the German Red Cross should favour sports activity during the summer, is a point to be considered.


    Annexe: List of products in the canteen.

    Copy of letter of March 3rd. 1942 re parcels.
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  3. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member


    Shoes, slippers, etc.

    Cellos, violins, clarionets, cymbals and musical instruments of all kinds.

    Books, English and German of all kinds (Books now on order to the value of £150-200).

    Daily and weekly newspapers of all kinds (English).

    Uniforms and clothing, underwear etc. (Uniforms on order to value of £400).

    Crockery, glasses, dishes etc.

    Beer, cigarettes, toilet necessities of all kinds.

    Sports suits, hockey-sticks, football gear, running shoes, parallel bars, sports equipment of all kinds.

    Stationery, pencils, pens, fountain pens, notebooks, writing and drawing materials, paints, paint-brushes etc.

    Handkerchiefs, ties, dressing-gowns.

    Carpenter's tools, axes, tool-chests, wood for making cabinets etc.

    Garden tools of all kinds.

    Suitcases, hair-brushes, combs.

    Cakes, fancy and plain, milk.

    Towels, sponges etc. soap, dish-cloths.

    Electric irons.

    Cigars, pipes etc. tobacco pouches.

    Garden seeds.

    Curtain material, carpets, rugs and matting.

    Musical scores.

    Penknives, nail-files, nail-scissors, eau-de-cologne, face-cream, scrubbing-brushes, hair-cream, candles, dusters, elastic, etc.



    Brushes, shaving

    Soap, shaving

    Blades, razor

    Cream, hair


    Eau de cologne

    Emery boards

    Scissors, small nail

    Combs, hair

    Cream, face, after shaving

    Powders, shampoo

    Brushes, tooth

    Toothpaste or powders


    Mirrors, shaving (cheap)

    Brushes, hair.

    Cigarettes (Foreign)


    Cigars and cheroots

    Pipes and pipe cleaners

    Holders and cigarettecases

    Lighters and flints

    Tobacco pouches

    Fuel for lighters

    Oxo or Bovril


    Health salts


    Cayenne pepper








    Malt extract


    Olive oil

    Spaghetti, macaroni

    Tomato puree.


    Needles, cottons

    Brushes, shoe

    Shoe polish, black and brown

    Laces, shoe

    Metal polish

    Clothes brushes


    Braces, suspenders

    Exercise books

    Pens and ink, pencils, crayons

    Drawing paper



    Playing cards

    Table tennis

    Variety of indoor games

    Wallets, diaries

    Pencil sharpeners

    Gramophone records

    Drawing pins, rulers

    Attache cases, small.

    Earthenware cups and enamel mugs
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  4. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member

    Letter dated March 3rd. 1942

    Dear Korvetten-Kapitan,

    1. The German Red Cross has lately sent me a first general list of the parcels sent in the period 16th. July to 15th. October 1941. I give below the following figures of parcels destined for Camp No.1 taken from this list:-

    31 July 28 Parcels
    15 August 126 Parcels
    16 - 31 August 134 Parcels
    1 - 15 September 138 Parcels
    16 - 30 216 Parcels
    1 - 15 October 377 Parcels

    I have enquired whether all kinds of parcels - standard, uniform, tobacco, books and those sent via the German Red Cross from relatives - are included in these figures.

    2. Another list, of which copy enclosed, shows the Uniform parcels sent to Camp No.1 by the Army, Navy and Air Force authorities through the German Red Cross.

    3. From a letter from Geneva of the 21st.October 1941, I take the following figures of Tobacco parcels addressed by the German Red Cross to the Camp Leader of Camp No.1:

    8 August 11 5 Kg. Tobacco parcels

    14 August 17 x 5Kg Tobacco parcels

    30 September 24 x 5Kg Tobacco parcels

    3 October 19 x 5Kg Tobacco parcels

    Further, 110 Cigarette Parcels were sent on the 27th.September to individual officers; their camp number is, however, not mentioned.

    4. Geneva wrote on the 27th.January in continuation of a letter dated 27th.November, that the following are figures of Christmas parcels sent by the G.R.C. to Camp No.1;-

    60 Bread parcels numbered 1 - 60

    180 Individual Christmas parcels Nos. 717 - 896

    2 Tomato puree parcels Nos. 2270 - 2271

    The date of dispatch is not given.

    5. Finally, it appears from a letter from Geneva of October 3rd. 1941 that

    100 G.R.C. Reserve Standard parcels were sent to the Officers Camp No.1 to be kept for newly arrived P/W.

    6. I would be grateful to you if, from your Parcels Register, you could assist me in the computation of the losses of parcels sent from or through the G.R.C. These parcels are, in addition, registered by the G.R.C. and a similar registration by means of Receipt Cards received is kept in Berlin.

    7. German Red Cross Standard Parcels. Regulation No.9 gives relatives the necessary instructions for the ordering of Standard Parcels. The G.R.C. now wishes to know:-

    1) Whether the contents of these parcels arrive in good condition and whether the packing is satisfactory.

    2) Suggestions regarding alterations to contents.
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  5. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member

  6. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member

  7. Malcolm56

    Malcolm56 Member

  8. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member

    Really good to see you in this section, Malcolm. Very pleased to see your PoW site is back up and running.

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