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WW2 - People's War

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Contributed by 
Barnsley Archives and Local Studies
People in story: 
T S Leigh
Location of story: 
Woolley Edge, Yorkshire
Background to story: 
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
05 August 2004

"This story was submitted to the People's War site by the Barnsley Archives and Local Studies Department on behalf of T S Leigh and has been added to the site with his/her permission. The author fully understands the site's terms and conditions."

1943? — I was 16 years old and walking with two pals along Woolley Edge towards Crigglestone.

We saw three Italian P.O.W.’s arguing along the road. They had obviously come from the P.O.W. camp down the road. The camp is still there but it is a poultry farm — I think! and still intact. These Italian P.O.W. waited till we got to them. They were still arguing and gesticulating with their hands and pointing in both directions along the road. As we got to them the middle and smallish one turned to us and haltingly said “Scusama plaisa wichawya wakafi”. This was repeated three or four times until the penny dropped. He was asking ‘excuse me please which way to Wakefield’.

They were considered harmless enough to let out after work in the fields and decided apparently to walk in the direction of Wakefield but turned right instead of left from the camp. I have called Wakefield WAKAFI ever since!

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Axis Forces Category
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