Tuesday, November 15

Occupation recognition




by Peter Troy, right

The annual Festival of Remembrance, organised by the Royal British Legion at the Royal Albert Hall this weekend was, as it always is, excellent. In recent years changes have been made to the proceedings in order to keep the service relevant and meaningful.
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We here at veryBritishsubjects firmly believe that in the 21st Century, it is vital to preserve our remembrance traditions. "Lest we forget" has never been more relevant than in these troubled times, when it sometimes seems that history is a dirty word.
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This year, during the Festival of Remembrance, came the welcome mention of 'our dear Channel Islands' occupation by German troops from 1 July 1940 to the very last day of the War in Europe, 8 May 1945.
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To the delight of one Jerseyman, Kevin Troy a school boy of 13 at the start of the Nazi occupation, a representative of Victoria College Preparatory School, St Helier, school crest left, was a given a key roll at Saturday evening's traditional function in the presence of HM the Queen and other members of the Royal Family.
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My father's detailed personal recollection of the occupation years have been the topic of many fascinating talks to senior British Subjects and indeed six grandchildren, in the glorious county of Devon in recent years.
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Jersey Evening Post Editor's office during the occupation . Standing is Arthur Harrison, Managing Editor to his left is Leutnant Seiler,German censor. Sitting, with the newspaper, Sanderfurer Dr Kindt, the eitor of the 'Deutsche Insel Zeitung' (Jersey Island Times) and a German translator.
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During the War Years William Troy, my Grandfather was the News Editor of The Jesey Evening Post. Later to become a much respected Deputy of the States of Jersey he won the coveted Military Medal (MM) at St Quentin, in March 1918, during what is now referred to as the Ludendorff offensive (or the third Battle of the Somme). My Grandfather managed to inform the islanders of the progress of the Second World War despite the ever present Nazi censor. Working under the now well documented threats of Nazi occupation he remained committed for five years to the cause of producing a newspaper under conditions unique in British media history.
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Perhaps when a Victoria College pupil 'googles' this piece they may well wonder about life at the school in those unique days of enemy occupation. I may know someone who could provide an enlightening account.
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More information on the Jersey occupation can be found here:
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1 comment:

Senex said...

Actually, Jeresy along with the other CIs was liberated the day after the War.The German Comanding officer insisting the surrender came into force at midnight.