Fred looking very dapper on his motorbike in the desert, presumably before his capture and imprisonment in Italy.
Fred Druce was one of 20 POWs whose addresses are listed in Robert Dickenson’s prison camp journal, “Servigliano Calling”:
Sunny Side. New Road. Tyler’s Green.
High Wycombe. Bucks.
Many thanks to Anne Copley of Oxford, UK, for having found information on Fred Druce for me.
Anne’s inquiry to the Penn and Tylers Green blog, a site dedicated to news about Fred’s home village, yielded two photos of Fred and some amusing stories about Fred in his youth.
For some unknown reason his nickname was “Wedger.”
Here are the comments:
“Knowing his personality as a teenager when he was a ‘bit of a lad’, I can understand why he was a successful evader.”
“You are right about Wedger being a character, I can remember him and a friend, standing up in the swing boats at Penn Fair and working them way past the horizontal position. Also, I believe, he took on one of the professional boxers who used to challenge all comers at the fair.”
“I’m afraid I can’t add much to the facts about Fred Druce but oh what memories it brings back of such a character. As a kid delivering vegetables for my Uncle Bob Long in the 1950’s from his market garden up near Penn Church I used to stand listening to Wedger who was a gardener nearby. My young eyes popped out of my head as I learnt swear-words that I’d never heard before and was told endless unbelievable tales. Thank you writers for reminding me of happy days long before political correctness was invented.”
In later years—Fred Druce and his wife Betty at a wedding dinner.