Most of the officers in Handforth served in the camp throughout the war years, whereas the lower ranks tended to be more regularly circulated to other duties. One of the most well-known officers in the camp was Captain Peter Drummond, the chief medical officer. Drummond, who was described as a “humane and conscientious” person, worked in Handforth from its opening through to its closure. He was in charge of the camp hospital and its team of German medical staff who worked under him.


Handforth Camp Hospital


Other prominent officers included Major Firminger, the longstanding Deputy Commandant. A prison officer in civilian life, Firminger had something of a fierce reputation amongst the POWs, particularly as he rarely agreed to their requests for supplies or assistance. Being a camp for non-English speaking prisoners, another significant group of officers in Handforth were the translators. In contrast to Firminger, these officers appeared to bond well with the prisoners, often working as intermediaries on matters with the British authorities.


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