The daughter of former prisoner of war Vincinanza Valentino, who was interred at Northill camp near Laurencekirk, has asked if anyone remembers her dad. Vincinanza, who is now 93, was sent to Northill after becoming ill while working in a coal mine in England. At Northill he worked on the land, and then later moved to a hospital, most likely Stracathro, where he did nurse training.
Vincinanza’s daughter Grazia says that he still talks about his time here. He remembers the camp church where prisoners took Holy Communion, his introduction to porridge (which he loved!) and playing in a football team in Stonehaven. At the hospital he was sometimes asked to sing Italian songs. He also learned English there.
He remembers a young lady called Heather Davidson – thought to be a nurse – who helped Vincinanza with his hospital training and accommodation. He has also mentioned the names Thomson and Simpson, and Eleonora.
Vincinanza lived in the area until 1949. He had meant to stay in Scotland, but that changed after a conflict with his father, who wished him to remain in Italy. He may have fathered a child while here, and Grazia says that if true, she would be happy to see if a meeting could be arranged.
If anyone could add to Vincinanza’s memories of being here, then please pass them to Mike Robson at firstname.lastname@example.org.