17 JEC Oxfordshire & 10 Other JEC Members Enjoy Tony Rolt's 'Road to Colditz'

17 JEC Oxfordshire & 10 other JEC Members, from, as far away as Cheshire, came together on Tuesday 23rd November 2021 to join in this online event, organised by the Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum with the support of the Jaguar Enthusiasts' Club, about Tony Rolt's 'Road to Colditz'. As well as a serial escaper, not least from Colditz, Tony was a successful motor racer both before and after WW2. The period after WW2 saw him race in C- and D-Types and winning the Le Mans 24 hours in 1952.

A Very Special Evening

This On-line talk streamed at 7pm on Tuesday 23rd November 2021, with the talk intercut with images and video and concluded with a live Q&A with speakers Stuart Rolt and Tom Hamilton-Baillie. Of the 425 attendees at the talk 27 came from the JEC membership evenly split across the Oxfordshire Region and a number of others.

This talk was put on by the Army Flying Musuem and the Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum that records the exploits of the Ox and Bucks Light Infantry & the Oxfordshire Yeomanry.

These two sons tell of their fathers’ hair-raising wartime experiences as 2nd Lieutenant prisoners of war in Germany during World War 2, from the 1st Battalion Rifle Brigade (Tony) and the Royal Engineers (Jock). Tony, 6' 3"" in his stockinged feet died as recently as 2008. Jock was the Chief Engineer for the Eichstatt (Oflag 7B) tunnel, through which 65 escaped even if all were later recaptured.

The talks covered their escapes (multiple in each case), the risks run, the penalty for failure, the privations they suffered and imprisonment in Colditz Castle. Tony was both the architect for the famous Warburg (Oflag 6B) Wire Job, where 28 got out of which 3 made it to Spain, and the inspiration for the Colditz Cock (Glider) that never flew but was later proved to have been entirely airworthy if the opportunity had arisen.

Apart from Tony Rolt’s unique prisoner of war experiences at Colditz, he was, of course, a well known name in British motor racing both before and after World War 2, having many notable post-war successes in Jaguars including in D-Types and at Le Mans.

Aparrently, Stuart believes that Tony saw it as about 50/50 as to whether it was Motor Racing or Escaping that was the more dangerous....

The JEC Oxfordshire Region has approached Stuart Rolt to give a talk on Tony's (and his own) racing careers in 2022.