Author Topic: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast  (Read 3706 times)

Jamesbelfast

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Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« on: March 10, 2016, 08:49:26 PM »
Has anyone any recollections or knowledge or sources of information regarding the Prisoner of War Camp and Military Hospital at Orangefield Primary School offf the Castlereagh Road.  The school was newly built and due to open in early 1940 but when the Second World War commences it was appropriated by the War Office until 1947.

Donovan

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2016, 09:27:16 PM »
There was a prisoner of war camp in Girwood Park of the Antrim Rd.

Jamesbelfast

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2016, 09:39:56 PM »
There was a prisoner of war camp in Girwood Park of the Antrim Rd.

There were around 10 POW camps in Norhern Ireland.  My main interest is the one at Orangefield.  But if you know of anyone having knowledge of information relating to the one at Girdwood it may help me trace some information.

Another piece of information tells me that the Americans had a 1000 bed hospital in the province during 1944 but as yet I have no knowledge of it's location.

CMcG

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2016, 03:04:02 AM »

... Another piece of information tells me that the Americans had a 1000 bed hospital in the province during 1944 but as yet I have no knowledge of it's location.


What about Waringfield Military Hospital near Moira for a possibility? There are the following references (in the link below) to the US Army in NI, the first in June 1942, the second on 5 November 1943:

1. 5th General Hospital also opens a 900-bed convalescent hospital at Waringfield newly-constructed for the British Emergency Medical Service (EMS)

2. 79th General Hospital (1,000-bed) assumes operation of Waringfield Hospital

http://www.history.army.mil/reference/ireland/irechr.htm

Plenty of hits come back on google for Waringfield Hospital near Moira, including this interesting c. 1960 BBC film:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/ni1960s/11711.shtml
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Jamesbelfast

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2016, 01:00:52 PM »
Many thanks for your reply and useful links.  Sadly I can find no trace of a US military hospital at Orangefield.

Bigali

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2016, 01:14:38 PM »
Many thanks for your reply and useful links.  Sadly I can find no trace of a US military hospital at Orangefield.

That's not to say that there wasn't one, I know it's not Belfast, but I remember my Father telling me that after D Day there was a temporary tented  military hospital in the grounds of the local big house in Ballymoney, so there may well have been something like that in the Orangefield area.
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Jamesbelfast

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2016, 01:38:31 PM »

That's not to say that there wasn't one, I know it's not Belfast, but I remember my Father telling me that after D Day there was a temporary tented  military hospital in the grounds of the local big house in Ballymoney, so there may well have been something like that in the Orangefield area.

There is a written record to show there was a military hospital or camp at Lisanoure (spellin may be incorrect) at Cloughmills.

Bigali

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2016, 01:44:47 PM »
There is a written record to show there was a military hospital or camp at Lisanoure (spellin may be incorrect) at Cloughmills.

Yes you are quite correct James there was also a German POW camp in the grounds of Lissanoure Castle, my aunt lived in a house whose grounds backed onto the grounds of the castle and she would have encountered the POWs as they worked the farm on the estate, she would also have gone to the local wee shop at the nearby crossroads for them and they carved her wooden toys in return.
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Jamesbelfast

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2016, 01:51:02 PM »

Yes you are quite correct James there was also a German POW camp in the grounds of Lissanoure Castle, my aunt lived in a house whose grounds backed onto the grounds of the castle and she would have encountered the POWs as they worked the farm on the estate, she would also have gone to the local wee shop at the nearby crossroads for them and they carved her wooden toys in return.

Many thanks indeed. That's what I like to hear - good local knowledge  - beats cold written records.

Bigali

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #9 on: March 12, 2016, 01:54:54 PM »
Many thanks indeed. That's what I like to hear - good local knowledge  - beats cold written records.

You're welcome, I believe two POWs escaped from this camp and were later recaptured in Coleraine.
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boops

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #10 on: March 12, 2016, 02:52:26 PM »
Is it possible the Americans used the City Hospital , I remember a pair of sentry boxes at the Donegall rd.,entrance when I was a young child.When the neighbours from our street held  Salute The Soldier nights in the Cripples Institute where there was tea and dancing, they invited the US soldiers from City Hospital who gave chocolate to the children,  it was such a treat as some of us had never  seen chocolate before.

Jamesbelfast

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #11 on: March 12, 2016, 05:10:07 PM »
Is it possible the Americans used the City Hospital , I remember a pair of sentry boxes at the Donegall rd.,entrance when I was a young child.When the neighbours from our street held  Salute The Soldier nights in the Cripples Institute where there was tea and dancing, they invited the US soldiers from City Hospital who gave chocolate to the children,  it was such a treat as some of us had never  seen chocolate before.

There was what was referred to as a borstal type facility which had once been part of the old workhouse in the grounds of the City Hospital.  The US medical corp used it as a temporary trasfer base for wounded or sick soldiers.

JackM

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Re: Prisoner of War Camp Belfast
« Reply #12 on: March 14, 2016, 01:16:40 PM »

Yes you are quite correct James there was also a German POW camp in the grounds of Lissanoure Castle, my aunt lived in a house whose grounds backed onto the grounds of the castle and she would have encountered the POWs as they worked the farm on the estate, she would also have gone to the local wee shop at the nearby crossroads for them and they carved her wooden toys in return.

Owned by the Macartney family.
1941 requisitioned by the British Army who set up the 61st Petrol Brigade who established the main petrol depot for Northern Ireland.
1943 Sold to the Mackie family (Belfast textile machinery manufacturers)
1944 Taken over by the U.S. Army 41st group and used as practice for D Day.
1944-45 British P.O.W. Camp established for German sub-mariners.
1946 Returned to the Mackie family who used the Estate for entertaining clients until the mid 1970`s.
2016 Still owned by members of the Mackie family who rent out cottages and cater for weddings / corporate hospitality on the estate.  :)
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