Did you know that DANHOSTEL Oksbøl Family and Youth Hostel (which began in 1983), actually is a former fugitive-hospital? You can read our interesting history on this page.
– Hostess Alice Kristensen
Immediately after the Second World War there were about a quarter of a million refugees in Denmark. In the beginning they were put up all over the country at schools, village halls and the like. Later they were gathered in bigger camps. The biggest of these was Camp Oksbøl with its 35.000 refugees; therefore Oksbøl was the sixth biggest city in Denmark at the time. Camp Oksbøl was situated west of Oksbøl in the forest Aal Plantage. A giant city of hutments was built and fenced with barbed wire to avoid problems with the surrounding society.
The Danish government was in charge of the administration but all the internal relations were managed by the refugees themselves. The camp had its own mayor at head of the town council. In the camp there were also curt of law, cinema, theatre, a number of churches and hospitals. The existing hostel was a hospital at the time. Three farms and two market gardens supplied several of the workshops in the camp. The spinning mill in the camp employed 150 refugees every day. There were mat-, broom- and brush makers, dressmakers, shoemakers et cetera. The camp had its own power station, waterworks, railway station, fire-fighting service, telephone exchange, public baths, laundry and big centralized kitchens. Just about 300 refugees formed the police force who maintained order in the camp.
Nearly 900 new citizen of the world was born in Camp Oksbøl. More than 12.000 of the inhabitants were children below the age of fourteen. About 1.400 people died in the refugee camp whereof many got their last resting place at the cemetery at the north eastern edge of the camp, 500 metres west of Aal Church. The last departure of refugees from the camp happened on the 15th of December 1948 and after that the destruction of the camp could be started. Today only a few of the buildings from that time remains.
The area was a military camp from 1948-1983.