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Red Cross parcel and contents.
Red Cross Parcels
Islanders were kept alive through the end of the Occupation by red cross parcels. Only civilians in the island received these packages.
On Wednesday 27th December 1944 the International Red Cross Ship SS Vega was seen off Pleinmont.
The Guernsey grapevine went on overdrive and everyone knew almost straight away.
When the Vega finally docked in St Peter Port at 5.30pm there was a large crowd waiting to receive it.
Over the next few days 42,400 parcels were brought ashore and distributed to islanders.
By the 31st December all islanders including babies, the sick, hospital patients and even those in the prison were able to pick up a parcel.
They were distributed through Guernsey retailers.
Along with the food parcels were 19,411 packets of cigarettes and when checked 30 cigarette packets and 70 parcels had been pilfered.
The parcels were either from Canada or New Zealand.
The boxes were different and so were the contents.
The Canadian ones were square and weighed 11 pounds while the ones from New Zealand were oblong and ten and a quarter pounds in weight.
The Canadian parcels contained:
And the New Zealand parcels:
Following meetings on the 28th and 29th December further supplies were assured on a monthly basis.
last updated: 03/04/2008 at 14:56