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Kenneth Douglas Howes

Male 1919 - 1980  (60 years)

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  • Name Kenneth Douglas Howes  [1, 2, 3, 4
    Birth Abt 1919  [4
    • age 26 at marriage
    Birth 10 Sep 1919  London Find all individuals with events at this location  [5
    Born 31 Oct 1919  7 Frogley Road, East Dulwich, London Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Kenneth Douglas Howes BC
    Kenneth Douglas Howes BC
    Gender Male 
    Birth 31 Oct 1919  [3, 6
    Birth Abt Nov 1919  Camberwell RD, London Find all individuals with events at this location  [7
    Occupation 29 Sep 1939  [6
    Boot Repairer 
    Residence 29 Sep 1939  44 Hindmans Road, Camberwell, London Find all individuals with events at this location  [6
    Service 1940 
    Shoemaker to Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders 
    • Captured by enemy on 6 Jun 1941 and spent rest of war in Greek and German prison camps
    Service Abt 1944  [5
    Private, Royal Army Ordnance Corps 
    Service No. Abt 1944  [5
    Residence Abt 1944  Stalag IIID, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  [5
    Occupation 13 Apr 1946  [4
    Boot & Shoe Repairer 
    Residence 13 Apr 1946  226 Peckham Rye, Dulwich, London Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    Residence 6 Jul 1959  131 Wolsey Crescent, New Addington, Croydon, Surrey Find all individuals with events at this location  [8
    Residence 16 Mar 1965  131 Wolsey Crescent, New Addington, Croydon, Surrey Find all individuals with events at this location  [9
    Death Abt May 1980  Croydon RD, Surrey Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Name K D Howes  [8, 9
    Name Kenneth D Howes  [5, 7, 10
    Name Kenneth Howes  [6
    Died 29 May 1980  Croydon, Surrey Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    • Extracts from a war diary kept by Kenneth Howes:
      War Diary

      4.8.40 Left Liverpool at 9 pm this evening on the Ontranto

      Called in at Freetown & Cape Town. Stopped at Cape Town for 3 days. Went ashore. Sent to hospital with iodine burn on leg. Result of treatment for septic leg

      Sept-Oct 1940 About the end of September arrived at Port Tearfik?? Egypt. Went ashore and travelled by ambulance to Moascar, Ismaila. In hospital one day. Discharged from hospital, 10 days convalescent and then was sent to Abbassia, Cairo. Shoe repairing in Abbassia for a few days and then detailed for western desert. Boarded train for Sidi Gaber. Went past Sidi Gaber to Alexandria. Too late to catch train to Mersa Matruh that day, so stopped at the Mustapha barracks for the night. Went to town same night. Next day went to Sidi Gaber and by train to Mersa Matruh. Stopped for the night. Next ay went to Sidi Hainish to join the Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders as shoemaker. Battalion left December.

      Jan 1941 Went to join the battalion at Soloum? (Salum?). By boat from Mersa Matruh

      Feb 1941 Left Soloum? By boat to Alexandria and then by train to El Fahaq. Went on leave to Cairo for 7 days. Visited Giza zoo, sphinx, pyramids, etc. Returned to El Fahaq on 1st March. Stayed at Eden House hotel

      March 1941 Left El Fahaq and marched to Kebrit. Stayed for about 3 weeks

      April 1941 Went by train to Mersah Matruh. Stayed for a few days. Went by train to Sidi Hainish-stopped for day and night. Travelled by lorry to Abu Haggag Fuka

      April-May 1941 Stopped at Fuka for 2 or 3 weeks. Left by train to Americi? Stopped day and night. By train to Alexandria. Loaded the boat Glen Gyle and sailed next morning at 2am. 36 hours sailing-arrived in Massara Bay Crete on ? May 1941

      Glengyle was built by Caledon Shipbuilding & Engineering Company, Dundee for the Glen Line, but was acquired shortly after her launch, and was converted into a fast supply ship. In April she underwent conversion into a landing ship capable of transporting up to 700 troops. She was accepted into service on 10 September, and on 31 January 1941 Glengyle sailed around Africa to the Mediterranean, where she became part of Force Z. Glengyle was part of the raid on Bardia on 19-20 April, and later that month was involved in the evacuation of Greece. She evacuated some 4,500 troops from Raphto, and in May carried another 3,000 to Crete. Later in May she and the SS Cameronia evacuated 6,000 Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders as part of the evacuation of Crete.
      May 1941 Stopped at Timbaki a couple of days after went by truck to Idecca??. Was in Idecca for a few days and then detailed for a guard on a road block at Moulyer??. About the end of May received word that the island was evacuating. Went to Idecca and from there to the beach at Timbaki and further along to the caves
      The first action for the 1st Battalion was at Sidi Barani where they joined the battle on 10 December 1940 as part of the 16th Brigade
      On 17 May 1941 the battalion moved to Crete where they formed part of the defence based on the east side of the island at Tymbaki. Most of the Argylls marched from Tymbaki to the airfield at Heraklion on the night of 24 May to help support the 14th Infantry Brigade in the fighting at that airfield. They were successfully evacuated on 29 May from Heraklion but their convoy suffered air attacks and many casualties on the route away from Crete. The Argylls left at Tymbaki were captured when the island surrendered.

      Friday 6th June 1941 Taken prisoner. Marched along the beach to Idecca.Following morning left for Heraklion and arrived same night, June 7th. Stayed at Heraklion over Sunday

      Monday 9th June 1941 Started on the march to Chania

      Wednesday 11th June 1941 Arrived at Ratimas?

      Thursday 12th June 1941 Georgiopolis

      Friday 13th June 1941 Suda Bay Chania

      Saturday 14th June 1941 Arrived at prison camp Ayia Chania

      Monday June 23rd 1941 Boarded boat in Suda Bay. Packed like sardines in a tin. No food and very little water

      Tuesday 24th June 1941 Sailed 9am

      Friday 27th June 1941 Arrived Salonika

      June 28th 1941 Went to no.1 prison camp. Arrived 4.30. Tea, biscuits, rotten egg, bread

      July 7th 1941 Moved to No 2 prison camp. A young woman was illtreated for attempting to give us cigarettes. Was made to march for the 3 miles in front with bare feet to prison camp. Arrived midday at camp

      July-August 1941 About the end of July we left Salonika by train. We had little food with us and we were locked up in the cattle trucks. Conditions were very bad and most of the men sick with dysentery etc. We travelled through Greece, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Austria and then into Germany. It took about 6 days and we had a biggest and best stop at Belgrade where we received a few biscuits and cigarettes. All the time we were locked in the wagons the doors were only opened about 5 or 6 times. When we arrived at our destination we were marched to a big transit camp. The name of the place was Luckenwalde. Well we were deloused and had a bowl of fish soup. At Luckenwalde a few days and the went to Neukoln on the 9th August. At (401) Neukoln we were in a big factory-soap, iron, leather, etc. We were there a few months before we received any Red Cross kit. I finished up a camp shoemaker. All the RAF personnel left us here and so did some of the W.O.s and N.C.O’s

      December 1942 Left Neukoln about the 17th and went by lorry to Falkensee (700). Stopped until the 24th and then moved off to Dabendorf (Stalag 111D 404). Arrived at Dabendorf Christmas Eve. Had a good Christmas.

      Early 1943 Was camp shoemaker for a while. Stopped a couple of months and then went to Genshagen (Stalag 111d 517)

      19th April 1943 Left Genshagen and went to Zernsdorf (stalag 111D 428)

      1943 Some very severe air-raids towards the end of this year

      1944 I am wondering if this is the year at last

      Monday 6th March 1944 I am writing this by home-made candlelight. Today during the early part of the afternoon we had an air-raid alarm. Squadron after squadron of American planes came over. Dropped a few bombs by Zernsdorf station. The first real daylight raid I have seen over Berlin.

      Wednesday 8th March 1944 Another daylight raid by American planes

      Thursday 9th March 1944 Air-raid alarm. No action near here

      22nd March Daylight raid. Little action near here. Night raid. No action in this area

      24th March Air-raid tonight. Plenty of action

      25th March Yellow warning today. Planes flying over all day

      8th April Air-raid warning 3 or 4 times today including a red warning. No action near here

      9th April A few warnings today

      29th April Big air-raid today over Berlin and area by Americans

      14th March?? (probably May) Went out for our usual Sunday walk. Four of us. Went on the lake in a rowing boat

      6th June Received news today of the invasion in France

      21st June In Berlin today and there was an air raid. Took shelter in some premises belonging to stalag 111D near Hal..Tor??. It was big raid, and after all clear made our way for Gorlitzer Bahnhof. Saw plenty of fires and damage

      (there have been numerous air raids since my last entry, so I will only write of an air raid of any importance or interest)

      6th August Big air raid today over Berlin

      9th September Had a concert show in the camp today in which I took part. Won a prize for individual acting

      21st October Took part in the boxing contests held tonight. Fought a fellow named Lee. I lost the fight

      28th October Concert show tonight. Took part in two turns, ‘come the dawn’ and ‘two in a bar’

      29th October Photographs came today. Photos taken in the boxing team and also in the concert shows

      24th December 1944 Pantomime show tonight. Jack & the Beanstalk. Took small part

      25th December 1944 Cabaret and dance tonight

      1st January 1945 Took part in ‘Odd Jobs’, a small show last night

      31st January 1945 There have been many air raids this month

      3rd February The greatest raid I have ever observed took place over Berlin today. Reports say that 2,000 planes took part. See three planes shot down. A few lads were in Berlin and say the damage was that enormous they couldn’t describe it. Stalag and the Red Cross parcels are still safe.

      28th March We have had many air raids this month so far. At least one raid every night. The daylight raids are coming very frequent now. We have been without food parcels for over 2 weeks until yesterday when we received half a food parcel per man. The Russian lines are not so far away, about 80 kilometres from Berlin. We hear the big offensive in the west has started and well on its way.

      16th April 1945 The news is very great these days. The British and American forces are well into Germany. The Russians have started another big offensive east of Berlin. They are not so far away from here. Tonight there was an air raid on Bieskow? a few kilometres away. Of course there was the usual raid on Berlin. Saw a fighter this evening machine gunning down the beam of a searchlight.

      17th April Raid over Berlin finished early this morning

      18th April Raid over Berlin and district. Finished early this morning. Machine gunning by Russian planes this morning over these parts. Leaflets dropped.

      19th April Raid over Berlin last night. Finished early hours this morning

      20th April Raid over Berlin and district last night, finished early this morning. Big daylight raid over Berlin and district today. Leaflets also dropped.

      21st April Camp received orders to move last night and make our way to Luckenwalde. Started late owing to air raids. In fact when we did start moving which was early this morning it was still not all clear. Raids were off and on all night. We have made very little progress owing to other evacuees and convoys moving to and from the front. At present we re putting up at a small village a few kilometres past Konigs Wusterhausen Busendorf ?? We have been split up into small parties and taken into several farm cottages. At the present moment I am writing this under a haycart in a barn. We are expected to move off tonight. Cannot understand this move but I just hope its what I think it is.

      22nd April Moved in last night to Grossbeeren. Slept the night. The first sleep I have had since we left Zernsdorf. Moved off from Grossbeeren to a little village in the area of Potsdam. Arrived there this morning about 8 o’clock. Left in the afternoon. Heading for a village the other side of Potsdam

      Monday 23rd April Marched through Potsdam last night. There was much damage to be seen. Arrived at a village 10 kilometres from Potsdam. Slept the remainder of last night in an air raid shelter. After a couple of hours sleep was able to ?? down in a hayloft. At the present moment I am writing this in the hayloft.

      24th April Started off yesterday about 5.30pm. Passed through Nauen and stopped the remainder of the night. Early this morning started off again. Picked up horse today for the wagon which is carrying the sick men. Have no idea where we are or where we are going. We are all dumping kit now as it is becoming a burden. Am writing this off main road by village. We are due to start off again this evening. There have been many planes above and several times have had to jump for cover on the side of the road. We have been helping some foreign people too. Women with young children and babies etc.
      6pm Sgt Major informs us that he has got in touch with International Red Cross and that there is a private estate near here belonging to a Baroness (Baroness von Wagenitz?). Planes strafing and dropping leaflets all afternoon.

      25th April Marched off last night at dusk to the village here. It is called Wagenitz, W. Havaland. Received Red Cross parcel per man this morning. Hear rumour that the Russian tanks are about a kilometre away. Russian planes are still strafing this area.

      26th April I hear today the Russian tanks have passed us on both sides. It is only the German soldiers who are on rear-guard action who are left in this area. Sgt major informs us that he has got in touch with the Germans in command of this area and say that they approve of this place being neutral and that we stay here. No German soldiers are allowed in this area and the German command have approved us putting an unarmed picket on the gate. We are now protected by the Swiss flag which is flying over the building here. There was a little small arms firing around here early this morning. Planes have also been strafing near here again. All our guards have left us except one who wants to stay.

      Friday 27th April Hear the Russian troops are coming nearer, only about 2 kilometres down the road. Plenty of small arms firing today and shell fire tonight. Several shells dropped in this area. One dropped just a few feet from where I lay. It dropped outside the building but I was inside. A few people injured. There are tank battles going on near here

      28th April Shell fire still in progress. Apparently the Russians are being held up. I hope they will soon come. We may get a bit of peace when they have passed on.

      I am writing this in a very bad light and it is rather late. Just received information that Russian troops have passed us on both sides. A picket has been formed and posted on the doorway. We have a Russian here who can speak German so we are OK for an interpreter.

      29th April Artillery and machine gun fire today. The Germans are altering their position. They are very close to this area. Plenty of aircraft over.

      Monday 30th April Aircraft over today. Machine gun fire. Can observe tanks about half a mile away. I do not know for sure but believe it is a battle. Some of the German soldiers by here have moved on. We have plenty of shell fire tonight. A Polish officer has just arrived in a tank. At last the day has come. He tells us we must all lay low yet. Just received news that Sgt Major Seward and a lad named Greenwood have been killed by shellfire from a Russian tank. It is rather late now. Tanks and infantry are rolling in now. They seem to be a mixture of Russian, Polish and French. There are a few women and children in the basement here. Some are injured.

      1st May Infantry and tanks rolling in last night. One of the barns here caught fire in the early hours of this morning. Several other barns and the castle caught fire. The building I was in was in danger so we were all on the alert ready to shift out at a minute’s notice. Managed to salvage the Red Cross parcels. The fire died down by dawn and this building is out of danger. Plenty of Russian planes flying over today. Attended the burials of Sgt Major Seward and Steve Greenwood. They were buried in the park?? Adjoining the farm here. A great shame they were killed half an hour before freedom. William Knox took the service. We have been informed that we will move off to Nauen in the morning.

      2nd May Marched off this morning at 8 o’clock to Nauen about 20 kilometres away. All the lads are not here as several have dropped out on the march from Zernsdorf and others have gone on different jobs here and there. Arrived at a little village outside Nauen about 1 o’clock, after going through Nauen.

      3rd May Slept last night in a hay loft. It was very cold so we decided to shift to a more comfortable place before tonight. Midday today went for a stroll down to Nauen with a couple of the lads. Nothing in the town at all, only a bread shop with long queues outside. Moved my bed to a cow stall. It should be a lot warmer.

      4th May Good sleep last night. Visited some Dutch today. All spoke English. They gave us dinner. The only food we get now is what we can scrounge

      5th May Moved out quick this morning as German troops were fighting nearby. Moved to the other side of Nauen. Got in touch with an organisation which is looking to the needs of people such as us. They gave us a hotel in Nauer for our billets and are trying to fix us up with most of our needs.

      6th May Making ourselves a good home here. There are several more Englishmen and Yanks around this area. A Polish officer with an American accent said we must all go to Berlin soon for the allied victory parade

      7th May Feeling very sick today. Have eaten nothing except a small piece of bread. In fact could hardly eat that. All day long Polish troops have passed through the town. From what I can gather they are on their way home.

      8th May Feeling a little better today. Polish troops still passing through. Tried to get a bicycle today, no luck. Most of the boys have decided to leave in the morning for Wittenburg, so as to be in touch with the Americans. Heard today the war finished yesterday.

      9th May Left Nauen this morning 6 o’clock on foot. Met some Belgians today going home. We put everything we had with them and all making way home together. Complete outfit now 2 horses, 2 wagons, 13 Belgians, 9 men and 4 women, and 5 of us British. Pulled in outside of Fruisack?? for 2 hours. Bridge broken other side of Fruisack so made detour. Stopped other side of Fruisack for the night

      10th May Slept in barn last night. This morning started off at 8am. Passed through Kyritz and see most of our lads there. They say they were stopped, anyway we are going to push ahead. Stopped at Gumtow?? For night.

      11th May Started off this morning 8am. Met Frenchmen returning from Wittenberg and say we can all get through. Saw notice on trees telling English, American, French, Belgian, Dutch people to proceed to a position opposite Wahrenberg for passage over the Elbe. Passed through Wittenberg and came to a field where others are waiting to cross the Elbe. Slept in the field for the night

      12th May Everybody was sorted out this morning into their respective nationalities-American, British, French, Belgian, etc. We had to leave our Belgian friends. They took a snap of us before we left though. At 3 o’clock was ferried across the Elbe by Americans. On the other side a couple of trucks were waiting for us and before we knew where we were we were away. Took us to a place 52 kilometres away (Camp Vassar Salzwedel?). It is an airfield so prospects look very good. A good hot shower, and later a good dinner, pair of socks, packet of fags and last but not least a packet of chewing gum. It doesn’t look as if any of our other lads have been here

      13th May Fag issue today. Cinema tonight. Some of the lads rolled in tonight. It seems as if the others are still in Kyritz. Heard tonight that two of our fellows have passed through here before we came.

      Monday 14th May Left Camp Vassar Salzwedel by truck 8 o’clock this morning. Arrived Hildesheim about 2 hours later. Hot bath and deloused. Sorted into groups ready for transport by plane. Americans in separate groups from British. Billeted in barracks ready for the arrival of transport. Wrote letter home tonight.

      15th May Went to cinema show tonight. Heard band also. Very enjoyable evening

      16th May Warned to stand by early this morning. 12 o’clock approximately we were taken to airfield. Boarded our respective planes (American troop carriers-Douglas). In a few minutes we were off. My first flight on plane and I enjoyed every minute of it. About 2 hours later landed outside Rheims, France. Trucks waiting –took us through town to the other side where there was a big camp. Bath, deloused and fresh clothing.

      17th May Trucks took us to airfield about 23 kilometres away. Boarded British bombers (Lancaster) and flew to England. Landed at Westcott. Welcomed by band. A meal, deloused and away by truck to Pennwood Camp, near Amersham, Bucks. Issued with new clothing, etc

      Friday 18th May 1945 Got paid today and ration cards, etc. Left barracks earliest opportunity and made way home. Train to Kings Cross and 63 bus to Peckham Rye. Very hearty welcome home
    Person ID I64875  ONS
    Last Modified 10 Aug 2023 

    Father Alfred Howes,   b. 14 Nov 1894, 3 Bromsgrove Road, Stockwell, London Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 5 Jul 1959, Lambeth Hospital, Kennington, London Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 64 years) 
    Mother Ellen Alice Claydon,   b. Abt Aug 1898, Newmarket RD, Cambridgeshire Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Apr 1934, Dulwich Hospital, Dulwich, London Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 35 years) 
    Married 8 Apr 1918  St Mary, Cheveley, Cambridgeshire Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    Cheveley Cambridgeshire
    St Mary's
    Alfred Howes Ellen Alice Claydon MC
    Alfred Howes Ellen Alice Claydon MC
    Witness 8 Apr 1918  [4
    Charles Richmond 
    Witness 8 Apr 1918  [4
    Charlotte May Rolfe 
    Witness 8 Apr 1918  [4
    George Claydon 
    Married Abt May 1918  Newmarket RD, Cambridgeshire Find all individuals with events at this location  [11
    Family ID F18755  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Violet Annie Collyer,   b. 30 Oct 1919, North Camberwell, London Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Oct 1998, Elmstead Residential Home, Chislehurst, Kent Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 78 years) 
    Married 13 Apr 1946  Church of the Epiphany, East Dulwich, London Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 4
    Kenneth Douglas Howes Violet Annie Collyer MC
    Kenneth Douglas Howes Violet Annie Collyer MC
    Witness 13 Apr 1946  [4
    Alfred Howes - father 
    Witness 13 Apr 1946  [4
    L D Lester 
    Witness 13 Apr 1946  [4
    T Glans? 
    Married Abt May 1946  Camberwell RD, London Find all individuals with events at this location  [10
    +1. Living
    Last Modified 9 Aug 2017 
    Family ID F22013  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBirth - 10 Sep 1919 - London Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 31 Oct 1919 - 7 Frogley Road, East Dulwich, London Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBirth - Abt Nov 1919 - Camberwell RD, London Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 29 Sep 1939 - 44 Hindmans Road, Camberwell, London Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 13 Apr 1946 - Church of the Epiphany, East Dulwich, London Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - Abt May 1946 - Camberwell RD, London Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 6 Jul 1959 - 131 Wolsey Crescent, New Addington, Croydon, Surrey Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 16 Mar 1965 - 131 Wolsey Crescent, New Addington, Croydon, Surrey Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDeath - Abt May 1980 - Croydon RD, Surrey Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 29 May 1980 - Croydon, Surrey Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Photos
    Alfred Howes
    Alfred Howes
    Kenneth Howes
    Alfred Howes
    Ronald Howes

  • Sources 
    1. [S1327] Kenneth Howes2.

    2. [S11] Birth cert.

    3. [S480] BMD register (England & Wales) - deaths - multiple sources.

    4. [S50] Marriage cert.

    5. [S4133] British Prisoners of War, UK National Archives.

    6. [S1956] 1939 Register, findmypast.com, ancestry.com.

    7. [S476] BMD register (England & Wales) - births - multiple sources.
      available online from various sources

    8. [S462] Death report - father.

    9. [S1696] Death report - stepmother.

    10. [S475] BMD register (England & Wales) - marriages - multiple sources.

    11. [S475] BMD register (England & Wales) - marriages - multiple sources.
      available online from various sources