Welcome to Camp30.ca. This web site is created in hopes of increasing people's knowledge of Camp 30. Camp 30 was a Prisoner of War Camp located in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada during World War Two. Today many of the original buildings still remain unfortunately many have fallen victim to vandalism and one had a severe fire. People in Bowmanville and the surrounding area have taken up the fight to have Camp 30 declared a Historical Site and are working towards protect this important piece of history.
Originally a farmer donated the land on which the buildings of Camp 30 stand to the government to build a school for delinquent boys. In August 1941 the boys school began to converted into a prisoner of war camp complete with guard towers and 2 high fences topped with barbed wire. I'm sure you're wondering why Bowmanville? Why Canada? Canada was chosen because it was far away from the fighting, the fear was that if England was ever invaded that any POW's there would end up right back in the middle of the worst fighting so putting them in Canada made sure that wouldn't happen. Bowmanville was chosen because of it's close proximity to Toronto and it was very close to Camp X (the World War II spy camp) in Whitby, Ontario. Also, Highway 2 (known then as "The Kings Highway") runs right through Bowmanville and at the time Highway 2 was the main road for anyone traveling to and from Toronto so it would be easy to get supplies to the camp.
Life inside the camp is far from what most people would expect inside a prisoner of war camp. The daily menu was far above what was considered normal in the Bowmanville area at that time. A sample meal plan consisted of potato salad, ham, macaroni, roast beef, potatoes, and roast pork. Also, since they were still receiving their regular pay they also were able to purchase items from the camp canteen including cigarettes, cigars, scissors, matches, writing tablets, pens, toothpaste, toothbrush, razor blades and shaving soap. There were few complaints about the conditions inside Camp 30 but it was the prisoner's duty to try to escape so they tried but none were successful. Life was not always perfect within the camp visit our History Page to see more about camp life and of course the infamous Battle of Bowmanville.