To mark Local and Community History Month this May, Mirador looks back to what was happening a century ago at the Standfast & Barracks site which is the focus of our Behind The Wall project.
We’ve been helped in our research thanks to a famous book – Goodbye To All That – by Robert Graves who just happened to be stationed at the Caton Road site in 1915 when it was an internment camp.
When Graves arrived there, about 3,000 prisoners were already in the camp with more coming every day including German seamen arrested in Liverpool, waiters from large hotels, commercial travellers, shopkeepers and musicians.
Even children from German bands were interned in the Caton Road camp as it was seen as a better alternative to the workhouse.
Robert Graves commanded a detachment of fifty Special Reservists, most of them Welsh, and they seemed more unruly than the prisoners they were guarding as they were constantly deserting and trying to escape, even using the sewers to get out!
- In Mirador