Spalding man’s National Service at old Belsen prison camp

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When Reg Chalkley did his National Service he was posted to a place called Bergen-Hohne in northern Germany.

It was a camp that had been taken over from Nazi Germany and Reg soon learned its real name was Bergen-Belsen, the former concentration camp site just a short walk away.

According to the internet, almost 20,000 Soviet prisoners of war and a further 50,000 inmates died there, up to 35,000 dying of typhus shortly before liberation.

Reg says: “Naturally, I went along to visit the camp site but I only went once because being there brought back images of piles of naked dead bodies being bulldozed into mass graves which I had seen on newsreels shown in cinemas at the end of the war.”