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Greek English


The Chaidari camp within historical memory

The Chaidari camp is a place of martyrdom and historical memory. However and unlike the German camps, Chaidari remained neglected for many years. The camp first became a military training centre in the late 1940’s. Until 1982 the few surviving prisoners were not even able to re-visit the place.
D. Giachnis was the first to organise an open memorial ceremony in front of the camp entrance. D. Skampas maintained this practice. After the recognition of the National Resistance, it became possible to gather in front of Block 15. Since then there is an annual venue in co-operation with the Municipality of Kaisariani. Block 15
became a listed monument during K. Nteniakos’ office. In 1986, the architect N. Triantis won a Panhellenic competition for the emblem of the Municipality of Chaidari, with his image of Block 15 in barbed wire and a red flower springing out of it, as a message of optimism. The Municipality renamed Vas. Georgiou Street to
Agoniston Stratopedou Chaidariou (Chaidari Camp Fighters) Street. This was the road that many fighters walked down to their execution. The dead bodies of heroes followed the same route too and their blood trickled down the road. Thus the latter literally carries the blood of the fighters. Today, it defines the town centre along with Stratarchou Karaiskaki Street, Athenon Avenue and the Sacred Way. The final enhancement of the road in 2001 gave
it a special identity, with commercial and other social functions. The part until Athenon Avenue has been named A. Floutzi Street after the prison doctor.
Parts of the camp have been given to the Chaidari Municipality for two schools, the Athletic Centre, the
West Athens Hospital and sports and cultural activities.
Another part will become a Park of Historical Memory and Environmental Consciousness. The area will include
a work by N. Saperas, with replicas of the camp wall. The trees will remind Kaisariani, so as to tie the two martyr towns together.
It should be noted that the Chaidari Municipality has proclaimed the whole area as listed. However, the promotion of the history of the camp is not complete.
It is a complex issue connected to the development of west Athens. West Athens is composed of Agioi
Anargyroi, Agia Varvara, Aigaleo, Ilion, Kamatero, Peristeri, Petroupoli and Chaidari. It has many problems and residents are generally of low income.
With the destruction of the Skaramangas coast and the inductrial use of the area, the military centres are the only hope for a green area. Otherwise, the well-acknowledged and provocative inequality between the east and west
parts of Athens will be furthened. Additionally, the largest part of the military centres is actually the mountain slope and only a small part is used.
Attempts to develop the area through intensive building were blocked by the Municipal authorities and the people
in 1991-1992, 1999 and 2004. In 2005 the Ministry of Defense re-located the military centres, an act that has paved the way to the creation of the park.
The Chaidari Municipality has contacted the European Network of World War II Concentration Camps in order to reinforce the action for the promotion of the Chaidari camp. Next to the camp lies the Dasos neighbourhood,
with G. Papandreou and Iroon Polytechneiou Streets, a regional focus of recreation. Sports and park facilities
have been planned around the military area in Dasos .

The Chaidari camp is a place of martyrdom and historical memory. However and unlike the German camps, Chaidari remained neglected for many years. The camp first became a military training centre in the late 1940’s. Until 1982 the few surviving prisoners were not even able to re-visit the place.
D. Giachnis was the first to organise an open memorial ceremony in front of the camp entrance. D. Skampas maintained this practice. After the recognition of the National Resistance, it became possible to gather in front of Block 15. Since then there is an annual venue in co-operation with the Municipality of Kaisariani. Block 15
became a listed monument during K. Nteniakos’ office. In 1986, the architect N. Triantis won a Panhellenic competition for the emblem of the Municipality of Chaidari, with his image of Block 15 in barbed wire and a red flower springing out of it, as a message of optimism. The Municipality renamed Vas. Georgiou Street to
Agoniston Stratopedou Chaidariou (Chaidari Camp Fighters) Street. This was the road that many fighters walked down to their execution. The dead bodies of heroes followed the same route too and their blood trickled down the road. Thus the latter literally carries the blood of the fighters. Today, it defines the town centre along with Stratarchou Karaiskaki Street, Athenon Avenue and the Sacred Way. The final enhancement of the road in 2001 gave
it a special identity, with commercial and other social functions. The part until Athenon Avenue has been named A. Floutzi Street after the prison doctor.
Parts of the camp have been given to the Chaidari Municipality for two schools, the Athletic Centre, the
West Athens Hospital and sports and cultural activities.
Another part will become a Park of Historical Memory and Environmental Consciousness. The area will include
a work by N. Saperas, with replicas of the camp wall. The trees will remind Kaisariani, so as to tie the two martyr towns together.
It should be noted that the Chaidari Municipality has proclaimed the whole area as listed. However, the promotion of the history of the camp is not complete.
It is a complex issue connected to the development of west Athens. West Athens is composed of Agioi
Anargyroi, Agia Varvara, Aigaleo, Ilion, Kamatero, Peristeri, Petroupoli and Chaidari. It has many problems and residents are generally of low income.
With the destruction of the Skaramangas coast and the inductrial use of the area, the military centres are the only hope for a green area. Otherwise, the well-acknowledged and provocative inequality between the east and west
parts of Athens will be furthened. Additionally, the largest part of the military centres is actually the mountain slope and only a small part is used.
Attempts to develop the area through intensive building were blocked by the Municipal authorities and the people
in 1991-1992, 1999 and 2004. In 2005 the Ministry of Defense re-located the military centres, an act that has paved the way to the creation of the park.
The Chaidari Municipality has contacted the European Network of World War II Concentration Camps in order to reinforce the action for the promotion of the Chaidari camp. Next to the camp lies the Dasos neighbourhood,
with G. Papandreou and Iroon Polytechneiou Streets, a regional focus of recreation. Sports and park facilities
have been planned around the military area in Dasos .