Headley Bowling Club
Berlin Escape Like many people of a certain generation a number of our members were called upon in the Fifties to carry out National Service in the Armed Forces. One such was Den Moss. For part of his service Den was fortunate (or otherwise) to be stationed in Germany. Whilst there, his Regiment were due to play a cricket match against a second regiment stationed in Berlin. At the time Berlin was divided into three zones administered by the British, the Americans and the Russians. At a time when travel was very limited the opportunity to see the former German capital was very attractive. Though, by his own admission, Den was not good enough to make the team the Regiment had to provide an umpire. As Den, whilst not being considered Regimental standard, was a handy cricketer and familiar with most of the rules he was put forward and eagerly accepted the job. The team was billeted at barracks in Spandau. It was at these barracks that the units guarding the most infamous prisoners of the time were billeted. The unfortunate Rudolph Hess, Hitler's former deputy,  was imprisoned in Spandau Castle where he was guarded in rotation by the three major Powers. Hess had made a dramatic solo flight landing in Scotland in the early part of the last War. Over many years Hess who was first imprisoned in 1947 was the subject of repeated petitions, over many years by his family and politicians, to try to gain his freedom. On all occasions these were blocked by the Russians. Finally in 1987 at the age of 93 he committed suicide! Den's team arrived one day, played the match and returned to home barracks the next. His dream of sightseeing never materialised but he had a story to dine out on for many years!
Notes
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