Captain Frank Henry (‘Paddy’) Sirkett was born in 1908, one of three brothers and grew up on the Isle of Wight. He earned his nickname from childhood tantrums and it persisted throughout his adult life. He was part of 367 Battery and captured at Cassel on 30th May 1940 at the age of 32 years.
His brother Gerald Sirkett was a bomb disposal officer in the Royal Engineers and also served in the B.E.F. in 1940. Gerald was able to escape with British forces at Dunkirk.
Captain Sirkett spent his captivity at Oflag VIIC (Laufen) in Bavaria and, from 1944 onward, Oflag VIB (Dossel) before liberation by Allied forces. His widow Sally Sirkett has kindly provided copies of his sketches, photographs and correspondence, including letters from Lieutenant Baxter- see ‘Officers of the Regiment in Captivity’ section of this website.
Letter marked Oflag VIIC/H from Capt Sirkett to Capt Baxter’s relatives dated 3rd December 1940 (courtesy Sally Sirkett)
Sketch by Paddy Sirkett of the shower queue in winter conditions at Oflag VIIC (courtesy Sally Sirkett)
In 1955, Paddy Sirkett married Sarah (Sally) who now lives in Newport on the Isle of Wight. They met while Sally was working on his farm, where he had a herd of Jersey cows. Their first born was christened Nevil. Paddy worked in various roles post war, including as an advisor for the Department of Agriculture on Tetse fly eradiation.
Paddy Sirkett post war