Obituary: German 'war bride' Elfi Johnson

ONE of the first German brides to marry a Briton after World War Two has died of pneumonia aged 83.

After the war it was often considered taboo for a German woman to fall in love with an Englishman.

But that didn't stop Elfi Kowitz and Peter Johnson – one of the first English-German couples to marry after the war ended.

Mr Johnson, 82, said: "Not many English-German couples got married because not many men knew German girls. There were political reasons too as some people didn't want anything to do with Germany. But it didn't bother us."

The pair met in 1946 in Hamburg, Germany, where both worked in the British Naval head-quarters.

Mr Johnson was then a junior naval officer and Elfi an interpreter and refugee from the former German east Prussia, which was divided into the Soviet Union and Poland after the war.

They were married at the Tetley Street Memorial Church, Lidget Green, Bradford, Mr Johnson's home town.

The couple lived in Shelf for three years from 1947.

During that time Mr Johnson worked as a Halifax Courier reporter.

Mr Johnson then worked at the Telegraph and Argus, Bradford, before the couple moved to London where Mrs Johnson worked as a secretary at the headquarters of the British-German Association.

From 1955 to 1966 Mr Johnson was a journalist for Reuters and Mrs Johnson would accompany him on assignments, mainly in Ger-many and the Soviet Union.

The couple had two sons, Robin and Christopher.

She loved sewing and knitting and was described by Mr Johnson as a "jolly" person.

Mrs Johnson died in a care home in Beckenham, London. She was cremated in Croydon.