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70-year Flixton P.O.W. signpost row settled by ghost of Winston Churchill

70-year Flixton P.O.W. signpost row settled by ghost of Winston Churchill

FLIXTON, THE SAINTS, SUFFOLK – What do you do when you have a sign but nothing to put on it?.That’s the dilemma that’s been facing the halfwitted people of the civil parish of Flixton,.north Suffolk for nearly seventy years.

Large red sign

During world war II (the best-looking war), RAF Bungay – a base for American heavy bombers – was located at Flixton. When the war ended (we won), the airfield was converted and used as a prisoner-of-war camp.until its eventual redundancy and closure in 1955.

The Flixton sign story

The story goes that after July 1940, when the Germans had given up their ridiculous ambitions of invading Britain,.Sir Winston Churchill (peace be upon him) gave orders that all the country’s road signs.which had been removed in anticipation of Hitler’s invasion.(to confuse and confound the expected invading armies) could now be returned.

This led to the erection of a large red sign on the outskirts of Flixton which read: ‘PRISONER OF WAR CAMP THIS WAY. After the erection, everything in Flixton made sense,.and in the years that followed, the villagers happily watched German and Japanese prisoners of war being dragged off to the internment camp under heavily armed guard. Life was good in Flixton… until 1955 arrived.

Dixon of Dock Green premiered on the BBC

Outside the village, the rest of Britain was enjoying 1955 immensely,.what with the 18-year-old Manchester United left-half. Duncan Edwards becoming the youngest full England international in a 7–2 win over Scotland at Wembley.

The Children and Young Persons (Harmful Publications) Act coming into effect, with the intention of protecting children from horror comics. But in Flixton, a dark cloud of fear and suspicion was descending upon the Parish.


The problem it seems was, now that the P.O.W. camp had been closed. The red signpost directing visitors towards it was no longer required. Matters were complicated by the fact that Sir Winston Churchill (God rest his soul) who had resigned as Prime Minister earlier in the year due to ill-health,.had not, whilst still in office, rescinded the instruction that Britons should re-erect all removed wartime signage.

Unsure of how to respect the wishes of the man who had single-handedly won the second world war, and discontinue the obsolete P.O.W. camp signage, internecine warfare broke out in the village. Some people said that the signpost should be painted blank. Others said that the sign should be amended to read ‘P.O.W. CAMP NO LONGER THIS WAY’, while one local idiot even proposed that a lone villager be posted to stand in front of the sign at all times of night and day to obscure its contents.

Virtually intractable

The arguments over the flixton sign went on for years, with the villagers unable to reach agreement until, in August 2014, the matter was finally resolved when, one morning, the villagers awoke to a mysterious new legend painted on the flixton sign: ‘SIGN NOT IN USE’.

No-one knows who repainted the flixton sign which everyone in the village now seems happy with, but some say it was the ghost of Winston Churchill himself.

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