A WORK OF ART BY A GERMAN POW

Below is a mosaic made by a German POW (name unknown) and given as a way of saying thank you for being allowed to attend church services at Nolton Church, Bridgend.

It is truly a staggering piece of workmanship. Each piece of mosaic is the inside of sea shells individually carved and pieced together to form this nativity scene. It is was a very difficult object to photograph in order to do it justice, but below is a photograph:

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SHIP IN A BOTTLE

Photographs kindly provided by Mr Clive Rowan

"My mother was stationed in the NAAFI in Island Farm - I am not sure of the dates. One of my treasured possessions is a ship in a bottle - with a small harbour scene, made by one of the German POWs -. I believe my mother swapped some cigarettes for it. I have always been astounded by the craftsmanship of the man who made this - using simple materials - (Camp coffee bottle, cotton wool, wood, plasticine, paints etc). The Ship has a date of 1946 on the bow (not sure if this is the date it was made). I remember my mother talking about her years in the camp - and the difference in attitude between the German Soldiers and the SS Soldiers. - the latter being very arrogant."

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Basically you have the ship in a harbour -with a train running behind it with cotton wool steam coming out of the chimney. There is also a car, lighthouse and windmill in the harbour scene, church and clocktower, houses and a factory with a chimney and more cotton wool smoke. The painted back scene - has sea gulls, clouds and a golf course. The water surrounding the ship is made from blue plasticine (I think) - or something similar painted blue

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A close up of the artist's signiture which appears to be "F_ussell 1944"


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A Jewellery Box

Photograph
s kindly provided by David Knee

My late mother was in the Women's Land Army from 1942 until 1947 and worked on the farm of Kenneth Treherne (later Sir and Lord Lieutenant of Glamorgan) in Cowbridge. When she spoke of her time there, she mentioned that German and Italian prisoners of war also worked also worked on the farm.

A few years ago, my Aunt died and I had to clear the house in Swansea where my mother was born. I found a suitcase there containing my mother's personal belongings which must have lain undisturbed since she moved to London in the 1950s. Amongst the items was a white metal box, with a piece of paper inside with "Casket made from a billy can with a prong of a fork. Made by a German prisoner of war." in her handwriting.

The box is of aluminium and measures 11.5 x 8.5 x 3.5cm. It has a leather inlay on the top and 'beads' (possibly lead from coloured pencils) inlaid on all surfaces. All surfaces are engraved with intricate flowers and patterns. The inside is padded using cloth and cardboard. There are some letters and numbers scratched on the inside of the base, but I cannot see them clearly enough. They may be initials and a year.

Lid of box
Front
Base
Inside
Rear
Side

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The Chicken Board

Photographs kindly provided by Howard Mitchell, May 2005

The following photos are of a children's toy which was made by a POW at Island Farm. The toy is made out of wood and consists of 4 chickens which are attached, via string, to a pendulum which swings beneath the board. As the board is moved, causing the pendulum to sway, the birds peck the board as though feeding

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