Harold Osmond le Druillenec

Belsen survivor Harold Osmond le Druillenec, a Channel Islander, recounts the appalling conditions inside the concentration camp during its final days, describing it as "the foulest and vilest spot that ever soiled the surface of this Earth". Inside the camp he endured starvation, thirst, filth and lack of shelter. He witnessed beatings and shootings and, of course, the fate to which most succumbed.

Belsen was established in 1943, originally as a detention camp for Jews who were to be exchanged for German prisoners of war. By 1945 it held some 60,000 people who had been evacuated from Auschwitz and other camps. Between January and April 1945, more than 35,000 people died there from starvation, exhaustion and diseases such as typhus. Anne Frank was one of those victims. Belsen was liberated by the Western Allies in April 1945.

Recorded circa September 1945.

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