By Gilly Carr
Lawrence Theodore Lowe (recorded in some documents as Theodore Lawrence) was born on 21 February 1914. At the start of the Occupation he was 26 years old, married to Winifred Lowe née Kimber, and lived in the parish of St Sampson in Guernsey. The couple had two children: Margaret, born in 1936, and David, born in 1939.
Lowe worked as a grower (a Guernsey term meaning that he worked in the greenhouses and possibly had a greenhouse of his own). However, by the time of the 1942 registration order, he was working as a motor driver for the German forces, based in a military garage in St Sampson’s.
On 27 February 1943, Lawrence Lowe was sentenced by the judgement of the tribunal of Feldkommandantur 515 to six months’ imprisonment for ‘failing to deliver a radio set’. The records from Guernsey Prison show that he was held there from 27 February 1943 to 21 March 1943; he was deported on 22 March.
A second document held in Guernsey’s archives reveals that on 18 June 1943, Lowe was granted a ‘revocable deferment of sentence to the end of the war, this deferment to enter into force on 1 July 1943. His return to Guernsey is authorised.’
In the meantime, Lowe had been sent first to Coutances Prison, where he arrived on 22 March and left on 7 May 1943. He was transferred, via La Sante Prison in Paris, to Fort d’Hautville Prison in Dijon, where he arrived on 8 May 1943 and was released on 5 July 1943. This were the same arrival dates and sequence of prisons as Alfred Le Calvez, George Du Pre and Henry Rabet from Jersey. Theodore Lowe was then transferred briefly to Dijon Prison with the others. Records show that he arrived at Saint-Denis Internment Camp on 8 July 1943 and released on 20 August 1943. However, given that permission had been given for his return to Guernsey, we might hope that Lawrence Lowe returned to the island under escort soon after, although no definitive evidence for this has yet been found. His colleagues returned safely to Jersey.
Bell, W.M. 1995. I Beg to Report. Guernsey: Guernsey Press Co. Ltd.
List of Admissions (Guernsey Prison), Guernsey Island Archives ref. HA/P/08-03.
Prison Entry Book (Guernsey Prison), Guernsey Island Archives ref. HA/P/19-01
Theodore Lowe’s occupation registration card, Guernsey Archives.
Theodore Lowe’s Coutances prison records, Archives de la Manche ref. 2Y3 / 3.
Theodore Lowe’s prison record, Fort d’Hautville Prison, Archives Départementales de la Côte-d’Or, ref. 1409 W.