Sound: working on the POW newspaper, Tiki Times

Wes Jack was a reporter on the 'Tiki Times', a POW camp newspaper. Here he describes how it was put together and how it survived the war.


Now the 'Tiki Times' was - every week - was put up on the notice board in the huts and it was news from all round the world that we gleaned out of the 600 men's letters that we got. We got the racing results in New Zealand and Australia - the Melbourne Cup was won by so and so - the rugby results and that's all been put in here plus articles and when you're very very hungry your brain becomes very sharp and some of the poems in here are really out of this world. I mention the doctor - Captain Seaford - Could I read it to you?

Yes do, that's very nice

This is Captain Seaford RAMC. [reads] 'It is my inner most hope that this is the final Christmas you have a way from home. My message to all you all is - with God's help may you soon see you loved one's your wife, your mother, children and sweetheart' - could you read the rest of that?

Ok, ' have made me welcome and my stay with you has been made happy by your cheerfulness. I ask you to have patience a little longer and to use all the tact you have for as each day brings our victory nearer so does the temper and powers of reason of our enemy become shorter. I shall be proud to march with you and I want all of you to be there when our captivity ends. To me E353, (which was the camp at Milowitz) will be a reminder of friendships made and hard times shared together during Christmas 1944. Good luck to you all. God save the King.' That was the issue of 20th December 1944.

That's when they set out on the march and they marched and they marched until V.E. Day - till May.

So the 'Tiki Times', was that produced by hand?

All hand-written. Max Wallace did that - he was a sign writer.... He died not so long ago too, Max Wallace.

How did it survive on the march?

Jack had the whole manuscript on a back pack.

So you say Jack - is that Jack..?

Gallichan - he was the editor.

So he packed that up in his pack and he carried that..?

Carried that until it was blown off his back at Regensberg and then it was put aboard, after the shambles - they had a wagon with a horse that took the sick and this chap who'd been wounded and was one of the sick and he swapped it for his pack and it got to England.

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