Camp railway track

Three reconstructed sections of the camp railway track were installed around the museum in 2016, connected together by a pleasant trail of approximately 4 kilometres long. This route also takes you past the execution site.

At the end of 1943, the German occupiers were looking for a suitable place for an aircraft scrapyard. Aircraft scrap could be reused for the war effort. There was enough room in and around Camp Vught to set up an annex of the scrapyard in Utrecht: the Zerlegebetrieb Herzogenbusch. But a railway line was needed to transport the heavy equipment. The railway line, which connected up with the railway line between Tilburg and ’s-Hertogenbosch, was laid by prisoners – known as the Eisenbahnbau Kommando – in February and March 1944. At its peak, 350 to 400 wagons carrying scrap entered and left the camp.

The first time the railway line was used to transport prisoners was on 24 May 1944, when 650 men from the camp were deported to Dachau. A train carrying ‘Philips Jews’ left for Auschwitz on 2 June 1944. Another two trains carrying prisoners to Sachsenhausen and Ravensbrück left in September. Subsequently, 200 remaining prisoners who were held hostage had to clean up Camp Vught. They loaded the bulk of the camp’s fixtures and fittings into trains bound for the camp at Bergen-Belsen. The last prisoners were freed on 17 September and the camp was taken over by the Wehrmacht. The town of Vught was liberated on 26 and 27 October 1944.

The railway line fell into disuse for a while after the war was over, until it was eventually removed in June 1948. At the request of Camp Vught National Memorial, part of another railway line from ’s-Hertogenbosch was stored in military barracks in 2013, the intention being to place a few sections to replicate the original. Since 2016, this part of the camp’s history has been made visible again at three places around the memorial centre (where Loonsebaan crosses Breautélaan, at the access road to the firing squad site, and to the rear of Camp Vught National Memorial), and there are information panels at each one.

Goods wagons

Two historic ‘Oppeln’-type goods wagons were brought here in early 2022 after being restored. They stand in the exact spot where a special branch line once ran from the ‘s-Hertogenbosch – Tilburg railway line to Camp Vught.

From here a path leads across the former railway line to the main building of Camp Vught National Memorial.
By car, you pass the wagons on your way to the museum, on your right side. 

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