After many briefings to drop at various places in Europe, we were flown to Blake Hill Farm Nr Swindon to be briefed for the Arnhem “Market Garden Operations” for Sunday 17th September, 1944 at 10am.
We landed in Anrhem at 1.05pm on Sunday amongst heavy flak. Our piper played “Blue Bonnets Over the Border”.
We soon had taken forty prisoners from the Ack Ack Division. Earlier met the head of the Dutch underground and all was going to play until later that night we heard a lot of small arms fire and tanks which we thought were coming to relieve us.
We were mistaken and by morning we were under heavy fire from two Tank Divisions and SS Troops. This continued for 5 days and the Platoon was split and there were only 12 of us. A man from 10th Para came and said they were cut off, but markers were to be put out and all were to try to make our way to the Rhine at dusk.
Before we could move, a German SS Officer stood up and said “look around comrades, you’re surrounded”.
We were taken and put into cattle wagons – 50 per wagon and travelled 5 days and 5 nights and arrived in East Germany – Teutschenthel – Stalag IV D.
I was put to work in a salt mine and had very bad ear infections.
Food consisted of a bowl of carrot soup and 300 grams of black bread per day.
The guards left before the American tanks drove through the camp in April, 1944.