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Listed Building

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site only. All other information in the record is not statutory.

COMRIE, CULTYBRAGGAN FORMER CADET CAMP, HUTS 19 AND 20 (GUARD'S BLOCK) AND 44, 45, 46LB50471

Status: Designated

Documents

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Summary

Information

  • Category: A
  • Group Category Details: A - See Notes
  • Date Added: 30/05/2006

Location

  • Local Authority: Perth And Kinross
  • Planning Authority: Perth And Kinross
  • Parish: Comrie

National Grid Reference

  • NGR: NN 76877 19948
  • Coordinates: 276877, 719948

Description

Circa 1941. Group of buildings forming part of a large purpose-built World War II Prisoner of War camp. Flat-roofed brick and shuttered concrete guard's block with advanced 3-bay section to centre. 3 semi-circular corrugated metal Nissen huts to immediate NE; 16-foot span, brick base courses and rendered ends, corrugated iron roofs, most with door flanked by timber windows to each end, timber and corrugated iron catslide dormers to the lengths. Mostly timber casement windows with varying glazing patterns.

INTERIOR:Cell block: in W wing, corridor with 4 original metal cell doors to each side; partitions between cells removed.

Nissen huts mostly very plain.

Statement of Special Interest

A-group with Comrie, Cultybraggan Former Cadet Camp, Huts 1-3, 21, 29-39, 47-57 (All Nos Inclusive).

The statutory address hut numbers are based on the numbering system operated by the TA.

Cultybraggan Camp is one of the three best preserved purpose-built WWII prisoner of war camps in Britain. The listed structures at Cultybraggan provide important physical evidence of the ways in which POW were detained during this period, supplemented by varying levels of documentary evidence. The listed section includes part of the original guards' compound to the south, and half of one of the prisoner 'cages' to the north, including accommodation and ablutions blocks. To the right of the front gate is the hut which was used as the camp church. Cultybraggan holds additional interest because it held a high proportion of so-called 'black' or Nazi prisoners, and also because it gained notoriety following the Rostberg murder (see below).

This concentrated group of huts and guard's block at the centre of site form the core of the Prisoner of War Camp. It emcompasses both representative examples of the Nissen hut type and the important Guard's block, the only concrete building on the site.

Cultybraggan Camp was under construction in September 1941, and was originally intended as a labour camp for Italian POW, but does not appear to have been occupied at that time. By May 1944 (the date of the camp's first Red Cross inspection), Cultybraggan was a transit camp for German POW, holding 785 with a capacity of 4500. By 25 December 1944, the camp was holding 3988 POW and had been redesignated as a base camp. Most likely because of its remote location, Cultybraggan became known as 'Nazi 2', one of the two maximum security camps in Britain which held a high proportion of prisoners classified as 'black', i.e. the most ardent Nazis and potential troublemakers. On 22 December 1944 an infamous kangaroo court was held and Sergeant Wolfgang Rostberg was murdered as an informer by fellow POWs (5 of whom were later convicted in a high-profile trial and hanged at Pentonville).

Cultybraggan was disbanded as a POW camp circa May 1947. The site was subsequently used as a training centre and location for TA summer camps. Its use as a military training camp continued until 2004.

The camp was laid out following a fairly standard, near-symmetrical pattern, with the guard's compound located to the S nearest the access from the public road, with a recreation ground to the NE side. The prisoner's compounds (falling into 4 near-identical groupings) were located to the N, on the other side of a spine road running E-W across the site. The compounds are divided by a network of roads, and the huts are surrounded by grassed plots. To the centre of the camp is the brick-built (with shuttered concrete roof) secure accommodation block, which retains original cell doors, although the partition walls have been lost.

In the 1970s, the two prisoner compounds to the W side of the site were demolished, and the assault course and firing range were subsequently constructed on part of that area. The groundworks of the demolished huts are still partly discernible.

Approximately 100 yards to the N of the site is its sewage treatment plant, which is accessed by a 2-track timber roadway, possibly dating to the POW period of the camp. Later buildings on the site or connected to it include

a few post war structures to the SW corner of the site, a small 1950s/60s gas facility, rifle range and assault course built in the 1970s, a Royal Observation Corps bunker and a large Regional Government Headquarters nuclear bunker, built in the early 1990s. To the N of the site is an explosives magazine, which appears to post date the POW era of the camp.

References

Bibliography

Hellen, J A, 'Temporary settlements and transient populations. The legacy of Britain's prisoner of war camps.' Erdkunde. Archive fur wissenschaftliche Geographie (Bonn), 1999, Vol. 53, No 4, pp.191-219. Hellen, J A, 'Revisiting the past: German Prisoners of War and their legacy in Britain.' Rozvoj Ceske Spolencnosti V Evropske Unii III (Praha), 2004, p220. Hellen, JA, Reparation, re-education, reconciliation, Britain's German 'POW camps revisited, Transcript of Public lecture, 21 April 2005.' Hellen JA, unpublished notes taken from ICRC records in Geneva. Thomas, R JC, Project Report. Twentieth Century Military Recording Project, Prisoner of War Camps (1939-1948), (2003), National Monuments Records Centre, English Heritage, pp18-43. Scotland on Sunday, Spectrum magazine, 18 December 1994, pp8-9. The Express, 15 December 1999, pp34-35. Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historic Monuments in Scotland records.

About Designations

Listed Buildings

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for the designation of buildings, monuments, gardens and designed landscapes and historic battlefields. We also advise Scottish Ministers on the designation of historic marine protected areas.

Listing is the way that a building or structure of special architectural or historic interest is recognised by law through the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings of special architectural or historic interest using the criteria published in the Historic Environment Scotland Policy Statement.

The statutory listing address is the legal part of the listing. The information in the listed building record gives an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building(s). It is not a definitive historical account or a complete description of the building(s). The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

Listing covers both the exterior and the interior. Listing can cover structures not mentioned which are part of the curtilage of the building, such as boundary walls, gates, gatepiers, ancillary buildings etc. The planning authority is responsible for advising on what is covered by the listing including the curtilage of a listed building. For information about curtilage see www.historicenvironment.scot. Since 1 October 2015 we have been able to exclude items from a listing. If part of a building is not listed, it will say that it is excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest in the listed building record. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the Historic Environment Scotland Act 2014. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect current legislation.

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Printed: 28/08/2016 23:20