BELGIAN REFUGEES ARRIVE IN LONDON From a Special Correspondent FIRST batches of Belgian refugees arrived in London last Sunday night and they were taken to three centres at Wembley Pool, Alexandra Palace and Wimbledon, from where they were sent to their billets.
went to Wembley early on Monday morning and found a crowd of some 150 men and women waiting to be medically examined and " labelled." They were all Catholics; most of that batch came from Louvain and Liege; but a few farmers from smaller villages were among them. It was a heart-breaking sight.
Like Burgomaster Max
There was an old man with a beard like Napoleon III, only of the snowy white of old age. Wearing a frock coat and speaking the most beautiful French, he somehow reminded me of Max, Brussels' famous Maire during the last war, but he was only a pensioned teacher at one of Louvain'e Catholic schools.
Many of the refugees were almost too
scared to speak. First their terrible experience in war-stricken Belgium and then the close scrutiny by the police after their landing in this country have turned them into nervous wrecks.
In simple yet moving words often interrupted by a sudden sob Belgian refugees tell their story. A mother whose two sons are now fighting with the remnants of the Belgian army in France has lost her little granddaughter.
Sent to England
The child was sent together with other schoolchildren in an earlier train and must now be " somewhere in England," but will she ever see her granny again? A young married couple of Louvain were out with their twomonths-old baby and the pram when the news came that the Germans were advancing. They dashed to the station with just their clothes and the pram.
All the public services of Wembley, Sudbury and Willesden have been cooperating to accommodate the refugees, and the Catholic population of Wembley did their utmost to find at least temporary shelter and accommodation for their Belgian co-religioniste.
A family of five, the Paupaerte, were disappointed because the committee formed by the L.C.C. had not been able to find them a Catholic billet. They were nice and decent-looking people, whose father, a doctor, had stayed behind to serve with the Belgian army.
Volunteers who wish to help should get into touch with the refugee office for Belgian and Dutch Catholics, Archbishop's House, Westminster, S.W.1 (telephones Vic, 4713 or 0587),,