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Shirlmidd

Ruhleben Camp. What is there now?

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Shirlmidd
Posted (edited)

Can any one tell me if there is anything at Ruhleben to commemorate the internment camp being there in WW1? Also does anyone know what is on the site of the camp now? I know it was a horse racing track prior to it being used as the camp. My husband's Grandfather was interned for the whole of WW1 having being found fishing in German waters on the day war broke out. We are visiting there soon and would like to see anything of interest about the camp. Thank you for any help! 

Edited by Shirlmidd
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Fattyowls

Hi Shirl and welcome to the forum. I've just put Ruhleben into the search facility and it comes up with lots of hits but I can't see anything about what is there now. I think I've plugged the coordinates from Wikipedia into Google Earth in the past and come up with an industrial estate but that could be a figment of my imagination. I've had a hankering to visit for years as my great uncle Herbert was interned there having been on a ship in Hamburg harbour the day war broke out. I also have an interest in no fewer than four former footballers who were also in there.

 

I'll try plugging the coordinates into Google Earth again and see if I was right; in the meantime someone may have a definitive answer. Update - by the looks of the satellite imagery it looks very much like a sewage farm or similar facility......

 

Pete.

 

P.S. I've just had an email from Berlin by coincidence and the temperature is topping 100, probably best to leave a visit for a while, particularly if I'm right about the site function.

 

 

 

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JWK
Posted (edited)

According to the Berliner Morgenpost it's on the grounds of Klärwerke Ruhleben, the local sewage treatment plant.....

ruh.jpg.c14c497f573ca889082d9294ad6f8d2a.jpg

(Top left Spandau Citadel, at the bottom the Olympic stadium)

https://www.morgenpost.de/berlin/article213904335/Gedenktag-fuer-das-Lager-Ruhleben-geplant.html

 

The article talks about a memorial service to be held on 22 november last year, and a monument to be placed at the Stresow trainstation

 

Edited by JWK

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Fattyowls
8 minutes ago, JWK said:

According to the Berliner Morgenpost it's on the grounds of Klärwerke Ruhleben, the local sewage treatment plant.....

 

(Top left Spandau Citadel, at the bottom the Olympic stadium)

https://www.morgenpost.de/berlin/article213904335/Gedenktag-fuer-das-Lager-Ruhleben-geplant.html

 

The article talks about a memorial service to be held on 22 november last year, and a monument to be placed at the Stresow trainstation

 

 

Thanks for the swift confirmation JWK, excellent finds.

 

Pete.

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JWK

The local historical museum held an exhibition last year "Nachbarn hinter Stacheldraht" ("Neighbours behind barbed wire").

 

The Ruhleben Story:  http://ruhleben.tripod.com/

The Ruhleben postage stamps: a guide to detect forgeries (at least 90% of stamps offered on eBay e.g. are forgeries!)

https://www.filatelia.fi/forgeries/ruhleben.html

 

 

And a Google translation of the 3rd april 2018 article:

 

The place is not a place to stay for long. Garbage trucks rumble across the street "Freedom", in the background steams the power plant Reuter, a slight smell of rotten eggs is in the air. 100 years ago, British prisoners of war lived here on the grounds of today's Ruhleben sewage treatment plant. All civilians. Sailors and businessmen who just happened to be in the country, but also many Britons who had lived on German soil for years and had started families there. Up to 4,000 men between the ages of 17 and 55 were interned in the "Ruhleben Camp" on the former harness racing track from 1914 to 1918. Like about 100,000 other civilian prisoners of war, they served the German Reich as a bargaining chip for negotiations with the British government on the approximately 26,000 Germans interned in England.

The situation of civilian prisoners of war in the First World War is not well reserched. Historians agree, however, that the situation of the people in the internment camps was not comparable to the cruel conditions in the forced labor or even extermination camps of the National Socialists. Nevertheless, the years of imprisonment have indisputably left the most of mental and physical damage. In the old barracks of the citadel, the exhibition of the Spandau youth history workshop "The English camp Ruhleben" was shown, which was created in cooperation with the British University of Leeds.
Also a presentation board with information is possible

The Cultural Committee of the Spandau district council has unanimously approved a request by the Green party, according to which the district office is to organize a memorial service 100 years after the closure of the prisoner of war camp Ruhleben. City Councilor for Cultural Affairs Gerhard Hanke (CDU) is planning an official commemoration at the Stresow train station on 22 November, not far from the former camp and the former emigration station, through which the prisoners of war were brought to the camp. There could then also a display board with information about the history of Ruhleben remember. "This is a place where many people come," says Hanke. At today's sewage treatment plant, on the other hand, a commemorative plaque would hardly be visible to anyone.

From the 3rd of May on the Citadel will be the new exhibition "Neighbors behind barbed wire", which also deals with the internment camps in the First World War. The exhibition was originally planned until 18 November, but could be extended for a week and thus still be accessible on the day of remembrance, announces the director of the Museum of Urban History Spandau, Urte Evert. On the occasion of the commemoration day on 22 November, relatives of the internees and British scientists are also to be invited to Spandau.

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JWK

There was a commemoration (of sorts. Included a "dialogic tour of the exhibition" (?) and a "panel talk"! Hurray!) on 22nd November 2018, but can't find anything on that "memorial plaque" they (maybe) promised last year in April to be installed at the Stresow Trainstation. But then that was politics talking, I'm sure, so nothing is to come of it. Or maybe a committee is still discussing where exactly to put it :unsure:

 

https://www.zitadelle-berlin.de/en/

 

From Google Cache :

Home > Events > Centenary celebration of the dissolution of the Engländerlager Ruhleben in 1918

Centenary celebration of the dissolution of the Engländerlager Ruhleben in 1918

Alte Kaserne, Zitadelle Spandau

Thursday 22.11.2018
Beginning: 15.00

On the occasion of the dissolution auf the Engländerlager Ruhleben 100 years ago, we invite you and your friends to join us for a festive event on 22 November 2018.

Free entry.

 

Programme

 

Meeting Point U-Bahnhof Ruhleben

15.00 pm   An der Freiheit, theatrical intervention by Jugendtheaterwerkstatt Spandau

 

Following: Programme on the Citadel

17.00 pm  Dialogic tour through the exhibition "Nachbarn hinter Stacheldraht. Das Engländerlager Ruhleben und Kriegsgefangenschaft 1914 bis 1921"

18.00 pm  Panel talk on the Engländerlager Ruhleben and its dissolution, moderated by Dr. Urte Evert including

Gerhard Hanke, councilor

Julia Pielow, Jugendgeschichtswerkstatt Spandau

Dr. Claudia Sternberg, a.o. Professor of Cultural Studies, University of Leeds

Prof. Matthew Stibbe, Professor of Modern European History, Sheffield Hallam University

Michael Stoll, artist

19.00 pm  Reception und get-together

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GreyC

Hi,

here is a photo showing internees ready to go home after the war´s end.

GreyC

Ruhlebenklein.jpg.c2ac704540d8a8aac451322d8e13de2b.jpg

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