Churchill's Unexpected Guests
Prisoners of War in Britain in World War II
Date of publication: November 2010
Publisher: The History Press
During the Second World War over 400,000 Germans and Italians were held in prison camps in Britain. These men played a vital part in the life of war-torn Britain, from working in the fields to repairing bomb-damaged homes. Yet despite the role they played, today it is almost forgotten that Britain once held POWs at all.
For those who worked, played or fell in love with the enemies in their midst, despite restrictions and the opinions of their peers, those times remain vivid. Whether they took tea on the lawn with Italians or invited a German for Christmas dinner, the POWs were a large part of their lives. This book is the story of those men who were detained here as unexpected guests.
It is about their lives within the camps and afterwards, when some chose to stay and others returned to a country that in parts had become a hell on earth.