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Croy Castle

Croy Castle is a castle in Aarle-Rixtel, its oldest parts probably date from the 15th century. In the Second World War it was a home for elderly people from the surrounding municipalities. Frans van de Werff from Helmond came there regularly, he kept a diary.

Van de Werff wrote in his diary on 23 September 1944 that "three deserters at Croy Castle were arrested by the English". On October 1 he heard that "200 Englishmen will be here on the castle and the farm". At the end of the month he wrote: "I hear on the radio that Tilburg is liberated and when I go to Croy, it is confirmed by Tommies who fought there. It is not over yet, we are afraid." It was the Scottish of the 15th (Scottish) Infantry Division that liberated Tilburg.

George Wilson was one of those soldiers. He served in the 7th Battalion, Seaforth Highlanders, 15th (Scottish) Infantry Division and stayed in Croy after the liberation of the area. He took the second picture in the fifties. He wrote after the war:

"We slept on the top floor and in the attic. The tower with the "ball" on top was the staircase. On the right of the picture where you can't see was the outhouses where the cookhouse was. At that time it was a home for the elderly sisters. The priest was an old man who wandered about - mostly when it was about midnight. I think he has to be locked up in his room at night for his own safety. This was a very old building, the floors were not safe."

According to the War Diary of Wilson's battalion, the unit was for training purposes in the vicinity of Helmond in October 1944. Mind you, that is before the liberation of Tilburg on October 27, 1944.

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