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Read about ex Italian POW Mr Pipitone from Woodley Close

 

If you have any memories or photo's of Ganger or Luzborough Camp

 you'd like to share and put on this page please send to

 

Ganger Camp Memories

The first memories I have of the Woodley area were the huts of Ganger Camp, an ex P.O.W (site No 41) which was used as temporary housing by the local Romsey & Stockbridge Council. The Council converted the huts into living accommodation, building internal walls creating 3 bedrooms, kitchen diner and living room plus W.C.  Electric lighting was installed in each room. Only room absent was a bathroom. It is believed the first family  to have moved in was Mr & Mrs Gwilt followed by the Levy family. I moved into one of the huts in October 1948. Some of the huts were made of concrete panels and some with felt exteriors.

When I first lived in Ganger Camp (Dec 1948) there were still some ex P.O.W's living in some of the huts. They were mainly Italian and Polish. There was still a guard house on the site and a massive water tower at the entrance next to Braishfield Rd. The water tower was very often climbed by the children that lived their. In 1958 the Council started building proper brick house’s on the site, these gradually replaced all the huts and became Woodley Close. In one of the photos below the top half of Ganger Camp had been demolished. The black huts can be seen in the distance along side a smaller water tower. In the middle 60,s the Great Woodley estate was starting to be built with prices starting from £2,999. A shopping precinct was also built at Warren Gardens.

Gone but not forgotten

We have learned with some sadness that the following  have recently passed away;

 Carol Levy (2014, Barry Wassell (2014), Cyril Luffman (2011), Florence Ethel Chappell (2011), Jean Levy (2010), Stuart Reeves (2010), Harry Gerrard (2010), Jean Turner (2009),  Kay Reeves (2009), Barbara Milsom (2007), Pamela Thornton (2003)

Hundreds of families lived at Ganger Camp. Some of the names I remember were as follows

Mr & Mrs Allen:- Ann

Bill & Leita Abernethy:- Leita

Mrs Andrews:- Sylvia

Mr & Mrs Baby:-

Mr & Mrs Barr:-

Mr & Mrs Brown

Mr & Mrs Burnett:- John

Cecil & Queen Callen: Pat, Dee

Mr & Mrs Chappell:- No 50,Linda, Derek, Trish, Ernie, Brenda, Peter, Terry, Maureen

Mr & Mrs Dewar:- Valerie

Geoff & Eileen Connell:- Annette, Linda

Mr & Mrs Cox:- Brian, Marion, Marina

Mr & Mrs Dittrich:- No 46, Bernard, Muriel, Joe, Andrew, Don, Debora, Bridget, Katherine

Mr & Mrs Edwards:-

Mr & Mrs Head:- Christopher, Garry

Mrs P & Mr S Gerrard:- Brian, Jan, Anne Ashley, Jenny and Sally.

Harry & Joyce Gerrard:- Tony, Carol, Joan, Ron

Norman & Sylvia Goodland:- Adrian, Robin, Bryony

Les & Mrs Gwilt:- No 43, Margaret

Mr & Mrs Jolliff:- Terry

John and Emily Jones (No 62) 1957- Teddy, David, Martin and Molly

Mr & Mrs Jones:- Tony

Mr & Mrs Keel:-

Mr & Mrs Legg:- Victor, Zedric

Albert & Gladys Levy:- No 44, Brian, Jean, Carol, Len, Tony, Chris, Kath, Gwen

Mr & Mrs Luffman:- Win

Derek & Lilian Maskell:- No. 81, Carol. Diane and Linda

Joe & Mrs Middleton:- Geoff, Mike, Hazel, Maureen

Mr & Mrs Miffin

Les & Barbara Milsom:- David, Geoff, Alan, Gordon, Pat, Chris, Derek, Richard, Steven, Julie

Mr & Mrs Murphy:- Chris, Susan

Fred & Mrs Nichols:- Edgar, Horatio, Peggy, Christine, Charles (Bubbles), Susan

Mr & Mrs Nut:- Colin, Iris

Mr & Mrs Orham:-

Mr & Mrs Osey No 42

Nell Osman:- No 5 & No 43, John, Brian, Celia

Sam & Tine Porter:- Sam, Frank, Jean, Pauline, Angela, Rosemary

Doug & Kay Reeves:- No 42, Stuart, Denise, Angela, Antony, Valda

Mr & Mrs (Olive) Rogers:-  Derrick, Pam, Jimmy, Linda. Jenny

Mr & Mrs Scivier:- Terry, Pam

Mr & Mrs Sellick:- Mike, Rosina, Angela

Dennis & Mrs Smith:- Brian

Mr & Mrs (Joan) Snowden:- No 72

Mr & Mrs Starke:- Colin, Carol

Bill & Pam Thornton:- Peter, Colin

Sid & Mrs Tubb:- Peter

Eli & Mrs Way:- Eileen, John

Charlie & Violet Woods:- No 41, John, Charlie, Rosemary, Beryl, Garry, Steven, Geoff, Jackie

Wally & Dorothy Wassell:- Barry

Prisoner's of War

I have some names of POW's who were at Ganger Camp during and just after the war. They include Guerino Pipitone (Italian), and (Germans) Gerhard Gebauer, Ewald Korner, Wolfgang Stein, Paul Villbrandt, Heinze Reiss, Hermann Mydeck, Elbin Ritzmann and Paul Ewald.

Paul Ewald married a Nellie Hayley at Braishfield All Saints Church on February 18th 1950

Albin Ritzmann, Paul Ewald and Gerhard (George) Gebauer book

 

Gerhard Gebauer went on to be a Church of England priest. He has a book out called "Hitler Youth to Church of England Priest".

Book Review by Mike Tanner

This remarkable autobiography, written in the 70th anniversary year of his capture shortly after D-Day in World War II, is a valuable piece of social history, which would have been lost if it had not been recorded.

It covers his early years in East Berlin under the Hitler Regime; indoctrination into the Hitler Youth; conscription into the German Army; resulting in his capture by the Americans at the age of 18½.

His time as a Prisoner of War continues from immediately post capture; travelling through England; the transatlantic crossing to New York; is followed by his journey to the western seaboard of the USA. His life and treatment in the three POW camps in the U.S.A. are described.

His repatriation back to England to a POW Camp in Romsey follows, when the integration process into the British way of life began.

The book then continues with his marriage to the daughter of the Farmer, who owned a smallholding; his exploits of becoming a Farmer; his Discharge from being a POW; and how he became a British Subject.  The final Chapters conclude with his calling to the priesthood and his training in Salisbury prior to his Ordination into the Church of England in 1973.  It closes with an Epilogue listing his Appointments as a clergyman.   This autobiography gives a fascinating insight into George’s long life.  

Mike Tanner  

This book can be bought from  Amazon either as a paperback @ £7.99 or as a Kindle e-book @ £5.41.

Ganger Camp Photos

POW's Ganger Camp

POW's at Ganger Camp in January 1947

 

Letter sent to Brown Ave, Evanston, Illinois USA in 1943 from Ganger Camp

 

One of the remaining huts Small water tower Tony Levy on his bike Hut 45 Ganger Camp

Margaret Gwilt outside 45 Ganger Camp

 

Entrance to Ganger Camp, Braishfield Rd. 1957

Entrance to Ganger Camp, Braishfield Rd. 1957  (Now Woodley Close)

 

L/R:- Eileen Way, ??, Eli Way, John Way and Mrs Way. (Names not confirmed)

 

Eli Way and John Way

 

Eli Way, Mrs Way and John Way

 

John Way and Eli Way

 

Top end of second row at Ganger Camp Woodley Romsey

Top end of second row at Ganger Camp Woodley Romsey

 

Concrete dwellings at Ganger Camp Woodley Romsey

Concrete dwellings at Ganger Camp (Now 23 to 29 Woodley Close)

 

Valda Reeves at Ganger camp, Woodley Romsey

Valda Reeves in the "Front Row" of Ganger camp, Woodley Romsey

Kay Reeves left with Mrs Woods in background.

 

Some Young Ladies At Ganger Camp, Woodley Romsey

Some Young Ladies At Ganger Camp, Woodley Romsey

Jenny Woods, Janice Gerrard, Beryl Woods, Jackie Woods, Susan Murphy and Sylvia Andrews

 

The Scivier family with John Osman at Ganger Camp, Woodley Romsey

The Scivier family with John Osman (Right) at Ganger Camp, Woodley Romsey

 

Eileen Connell & daughter Annette at Ganger Camp

Eileen Connell & daughter Annette at Ganger Camp Woodley 1950's

 

Huts at Ganger Camp, Woodley Romsey in 1953

"Front Row" huts at Ganger Camp, Woodley Romsey in 1958

 

Len Levy Mike Sellick Bridget Dittrich Don Dittrich Horatio Nichols Carol Levy Kath Levy Geoff Milsom Joe Dittrich Chris Levy Gwen Levy Kids at Ganger Camp Woodley Romsey on Coronation Day 1953

Kids at Ganger Camp Woodley Romsey on Coronation Day 1953

Photo taken by a Mr Barr

 

United States Air Force drop by..

 

 

On Friday July 19th 1957 one of the largest helicopters in the world, a Vertol H21 from the United States Air Force, made a force landing in a field next to Ganger Camp (Woodley Close).

It spent nearly 21 hours grounded. The red and silver 22-seater twin rotor machine, came from Braintree in Essex. It had left its base with a crew of four to fly to Exeter. It refuelled at Greenham Common, and took a different course to avoid bad weather. Visibility then got so poor that it made an emergency landing in Woodley, Romsey. No one got hurt. A nice gesture by the Americans was to let dozens of local children go on board to have a look around. Third from right in photo is Brian Osman.

thanks to Richard Bird for photo..

Water Tower at entrance to Ganger Camp Woodley, by Braishfield Road

Water Tower at entrance to Ganger Camp Woodley

by Braishfield Road

 

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Mr  Guerino Pipitone (Pip)

Article From

http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar

Contributed by Romsey Community School, Hampshire
People in story: Mr. Pipitone
Location of story: Africa/Glasgow/Romsey
Background to story: Army
Article ID: A2821907
Contributed on: 09 July 2004


On the 17th May 2004 Jordan and Ian interviewed a man called Mr. Pipitone aged 88

Mr. Pipotone is Italian but he lived in Tunisia for most of his younger life when he was old enough he joined the Italian army serving under Mussolini he was sent to Libya and Ethiopia in Africa. Towards the end of the war his regiment was sent to South Africa for a few months until the British Ghurkhas caught him. He got sent to a prisoner of war camp. He said "the conditions were alright for a POW". He then told us "when my captain surrendered on behalf of our regiment he shot himself in shame, I however was glad to be caught as the conditions in the camps were good and we were safe".
Even though he was Italian he hated Mussolini and he was very pleased when Mussolini got publicly hung at the end of the war.
After a few weeks in the camp Mr. Pipitone was asked if he wanted to go to another camp but they weren't told where they were heading for. The journey took over a month, when they eventually arrived n Glasgow, Scotland in 1945.
From there he was sent to another camp just outside Glasgow. Then finally he was sent to Woodley, Romsey. He was sent to work at Ganger farm. He wanted go back home to Tunisia but the French wouldn't let him. So he stayed in England and met a girl and they later got married in Lockerley. They had four children, two boys and two girls. A car unfortunately hit and killed their eldest, aged 45.
Rationing was not a problem for Mr. Pipitone and he remembers things on the radio about Dunkirk and the D-Day landings.
He has recently been to Italy to see his brother and catch up on old times and listen to Elvis music.
In the war Mr. Pipitone never got shot or wounded.

© Copyright of content contributed to this Archive rests with the author.


Mr Pipitone sadly died on January 26th 2006

 

Luzborough Camp Memories

by Mike Thomas

Hi Romsonians, Mike Thomas here in the USA. I would like to ask anyone that has pictures and/or information on LUZBOROUGH CAMP from the late 40's and early 50's to send them to me at fishingfool25@gmail.com  I am preparing to write a memoir and would like to add pictures and to possibly jog my memories of those early days when I lived there.  Luzborough camp was located at the corner of Luzborough Lane and Botley Rd, just south of Baddesley. Thank you in advance for your help, Regards ... Mike

Only a few families lived at Luzborough Camp.

Some of the names I remember were as follows

Mr & Mrs Bell:- Vernon

Mr & Mrs Cleary:- Michael, Julie

Ernest & Mrs Russell

Mr & Mrs Thomas:- David, Sid, Tony, Danny, Mike

Mr & Mrs Turner:- Don, Len, David

Muriel & Bert Young:- Mick, Peter

Recent aerial photo of the site

 

Aerial photo taken in 1945