Oct 1914 Luton Helps Belgian Refugees

Luton was responding to the plight of Belgian refugees displaced as their homes became swallowed up and often destroyed by the German advance.


  • "These are the times when you find out the folk who have hearts in the right place," said Luton Mayoress Mrs Primett in The Luton News of October 22nd, 1914. And more and more Lutonians were opening up their hearts and their homes to the refugees.


  • Acting medical officer of health Dr Sworder offered a furnished house in Park Street West rent free;


Meeting with a Belgian Refugee

Luton councillor Murry Barford wrote an article in The Luton News (October 15th, 1914) about an encounter with a Belgian refugee on the 12.15 train from St Pancras on Tuesday.

"It is not war, it is massacre," said the man. He, his brother, a man servant, with two boys of the  tenderest years, were on their way to Derby to receive from some kind-hearted householder asylum and a home, the only gift we Britishers can offer these noble people, bereft of all they once possessed.

Mayor's Belgian Refugee Fund

ARTICLE IN LUTON NEWS FEBRUARY 1915.  The fund has been rather hard hit recently by the furnishing of houses for the wives and families of a few Belgians who have secured work in the town and district and at the present time, the committee have scope for further work if the income permitted. It is however, deplored that some places of worship are sending contributions to the central fund in London and in this way it has been pointed out they are depriving the local committee of considerable monies.

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