PoW Camp 556 Bucknowle House

Discussion in 'UK PoW Camps' started by Martin Richards, Sep 24, 2019.

  1. Martin Richards

    Martin Richards Active Member

    I was at the site of PoW Camp 556 Bucknowle House at the weekend.
    the house is empty but i actually camped the night at the farm next door.

    My images as to what this site now looks like can be found here PoW Camp 556 Bucknowle House

    I have a question though.
    The people living at the farm confrm that the house was used in WWII.
    But, my question is where there huts and buildings in the grounds becuase if you look at my drone images that show the feild infront of the house so clear evidance as to buildings having been there.
    But, where these for the PoWs or Photo 2019 09 6629.jpg were they some thing else?
  2. Osborne2

    Osborne2 Well-Known Member

    I suspect that you may find the site was previously a British/US army camp and that it was taken over later for prisoners after the exodus to Normandy. POW Camps tended to be a standard layout if created before mid 1944. See Prisoner of War Camps (1939 - 1948) | Historic England and anything with an irregular layout was possible a previous army camp. Any POW camp with a number roughly below 150 tends to have been built for and often by the Italians 1942-44
    CL1 likes this.
  3. Martin Richards

    Martin Richards Active Member

    yes that is the history for the site.
    it is also the history for most sites in that they were normally used by UK, Canada, Aus, NZ, USA etc... and then later were used as PoW Camps.
    The question though when they use houses scuh as this is wheather or not they only used the house or did they also use huts in the grounds.
    The photos i have implies hutsand buildings but they could be WWII or they could be some thing else.
    For example the farm its self has a WWII Hut but it was put next to the barn in the 1950's.

    PoW Camp 556 Bucknowle House
  4. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    Possibly something else if you look at street view?
  5. Osborne2

    Osborne2 Well-Known Member

    Purpose built camps, prisoners in huts. Ex Allied troop camps, prisoners in huts. However, I know of instances post 1945 where Germans were in the main accommodation, be it the Hall/House etc or guard camp. See Bert Trautmann biog, by Catrine Clay for Ashton in Makerfield. This was probably exception than rule.
  6. Martin Richards

    Martin Richards Active Member

    yes I know of instances of all ...
    PoW's in House - Guards in tents
    PoWs in Tents, Guards inb Huts, Officers incharge of the site in the main "House"
    there are many variations on this and whast happened say in 1941, 42, 43 etc may well all be very different.
    The point is to estabilsh what was the actually case at each time and when that case applied.
    the whole thing was as a state of fliux.

    My original question ass to this site still stand:

    a. What was in the field ?

    b. was it WWII related ?

    c. who was in the house and when ?

    d. who was in the field ?

    e. was it an Allide Camp tha became a PoW Camp ?

    f. when did it become a PoW Camp ?

    g. Who was theior; German or Italin ?

    h. Officer or enlisted ?

    i. Did the usabe change over time ?

    j. When did it open and close for PoW's ?

    k. When in the late 1940's to mid 1950's were buildings removed

  7. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    The point of my post #4 was to suggest that the marks in the field could well be modern. The field was used as a camp site for the Boy's Brigade, perhaps an annual event?
    The position of the large marquee would seem to tie in fairly well with your drone shot which also shows smaller marks (? tents) in a square with something in the middle (? camp fire).

    From the Boys Brigade website:
    "1st Yeovil Campsite, Corfe Castle Fully equipped for 60 persons 14’ x 14’ ridge tents plus 70’ x 30’ Marquee & 30’ x 13’ Toilet tent all in white canvass. Bookings now for 2018."
    Campsites & Residential Centres - The Boys Brigade

  8. Osborne2

    Osborne2 Well-Known Member

    Martin, Just to let you know I can see what you are trying to achieve in #6, just have no idea about Dorset.
  9. Martin Richards

    Martin Richards Active Member

    you might want to look at the following
    MA Photography this is my own photo website where all mt imgaes shot during the MAare posted.
    You need to understand though that the images rae uncatalogued that is to say they are not sorted to good or bad.
    also you need to see the notes as it is threm that tell you if the images are of say the general area when i cannot find the actual site.
    the notes are on the Banged up aboard menu as PoW Camp Details Issue 4.nn
    the notes are in the form of a .pdf and are subject to replacement so do not link to them.,
    also my notes list over a 100 sites not included within the EH Doc
    Osborne2 likes this.
  10. Martin Richards

    Martin Richards Active Member

  11. Pete Wood

    Pete Wood Member

    Tony is correct - the markings are modern. Once again, Martin, I find myself having to correct you and, in doing so, reveal years of research which, I thought, we had an agreement about (privately and on many occasions).

    Too many times you jump to conclusions and then plaster it all over the web. It just causes confusion for those who then take your observations as gospel.

    I am happy to reveal locations, in my own time. I like sharing but, as you know, I also actively encourage people to do their own research too - and use third party (often hearsay) evidence as a starting point. It must be backed up by maps, period photos etc etc. I commend your energy and enthusiasm, but just wish you would research before (!) visiting the sites.

    Many PoW camps were known (mostly for the purposes of non locals) by the name of a large house/site. That way, people had a rough idea of where they were going and, as was the custom of the day (when sign-posts had mostly been removed in case of a German Invasion) asked locals when they got nearby, and then received precise directions.

    The PoW Camp was actually at 50°38'2.53"N 2° 4'43.25"W and dismantled very quickly after the war. The guards were housed at Glebe Farm (to the NE of the house).

    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
  12. Martin Richards

    Martin Richards Active Member

    thanks Peter, as i say I did not know if the marking were modern or not, hence the question being asked.
    and as i say i only started this project 12 months ago and the level of data and its collaboration is not as deep as your own.
    whilst i will look at the EH data the truth is that this is only good to get you in the general area in most cases.
    As such i look for things to try and confirm that data.
    also in many way's that is actually a key part of my own project in trying to find traces as to what was once there.
    In this i am looking at the present and then work back BUT it is import again to note that my worked is linked to a modern photography project as part of an MA and that I am required to post what amounts to work in progress NOT the final accurate results.

    most if not all conventail research into this subject is pure history and starts in the past and looks forward - this is how it should be for historical research.

    During the summer 2020 i will be publishing again as part of my MA images of what the sites look like at conformed locations where I can show traces and of those places were the location is confirmed for sites that have gone but as general landscape work. plus back catlogue of a few shots of the general area where inform and traces in the landscape are both lacking - Again my work is about the modern landscape in terms of Photography and what can be seen or not seen from the past.
    It is a very very important distinction between my work and the mainstream military history based resreach

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