Interview with Les Rutherford. Four



Interview with Les Rutherford. Four


Les Rutherford talks about the prisoner of war diary he compiled while an inmate of Belaria compound at Stalag Luft 3. Two months after arriving, he exchanged three chocolate bars for the notebook which became this personal memoir. He recollects memories of daily life, people he met and why he started his diary. Some pictures have been drawn by him, others by fellow inmates. Drawings and descriptions cover various aircraft, camp catering and entertainment, including a hut used for concerts, shows and band practice sessions. Various incidents are mentioned, notably the Great Escape, which took place at the Sagan compound of Stalag Luft 3 in March 1944. He comments on pieces of text copied into the diary, including Noel Coward’s ‘Lie In the Dark and Listen’ and Winston Churchill’s reflections on being imprisoned during the South African (Anglo-Boer) War. He describes the bartering system between the Germans and inmates and reminisces about the Long March to a new camp and the arrival of the Russian Army. Conditions were extremely poor and promises of food were not kept, although they did receive two radios. He explains that some photographs that had been part of the journal have since gone missing.

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Dan Ellin, “Interview with Les Rutherford. Four,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed October 28, 2021,

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