Letter from Alan Bush to Ralph Vaughan Williams

Letter No.: 
VWL3734
December 28th, 1938.

Dr R. Vaughan Williams,
Whitegates,
Westcott Rd,
Doring, Surrey.

Dear Dr Vaughan Williams,

At last our efforts on behalf of Dr Pinthus have been rewarded by a move on the part of the authorities.  Dr Pinthus's mother has just received a communication from the Gestapo to the effect that they are willing to release him from the concentration camp at Dachau on condition that he obtains a visa from some country which will enable him to remain there permanently.

You will remember that when I first approached you in the matter, there was a proposal to guarantee to Dr Pinthus the costs of his studies and upkeep here in England.  You kindly consented to contribute £50 per annum for two years, Goldsborough £25 per annum tor two years, and I would do the same as Goldsborough.  It if is possible to present the authorities of Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand, or Bolivia, (which are the four countries which Dr Pinthus wants to try and enter) with the statement that you will provide him with the sum of £200, half of which would be forthcoming from Goldsborough and myself, there is practically no doubt that a visa would be granted, and his freedom from the concentration camp assured immediately, with all that this implies.  It would mean a lump sum instead of quarterly or half-yearly payments.

The statement would come best from you, as in the case of Australia and New Zealnd especially, your name would carry tremendous weight, and make the granting of the permit a virtual certainty.  If you are willing to do this, would you mind writing two letters, as per enclosed draft, and returning to me.  An approach will then be made to the various consulates in question.  (The reason why I am asking for two, is that more than one can be approached simultaneously, with consequent saving of time.  The saving of days, in the case of a person who has been in a concentration camp for some considerable period may the the difference between sanity and insanity, or even life and death).

I remain,
Yours very sincerely,

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Taken from a copy of a typescript.

Format: 
Letter
Original database number: 
Bush