To honour those who served their country

“In this their finest hour”

Royal Artillery-tn

1114627

Gunner - Driver In Charge

Alfred Robert Bowers

Bowers-Alfred-Robert-03tn

1920/10/19 - Born Forest Gate, London

Son of James Richard and Jane Bowers

Occupation Motor Driver

1942/13/03 - Enlisted

Royal Artillery

80 Anti-Tank Regiment

11th Division

 

Service

1941/08/28

Mobilisation Centre to join 80th Anti-Tank Regiment.  Departed Nottingham for Gourock, Scotland.

 

Scythia-HMT

1941/08/29 14:00

Boarded  HMT Scythia (Ex. RMS Scythia, Cunard Line)

1941/08/30 23:00

Convoy sailed for Singapore. (although no one onboard knew the destination at this time) This was named Convoy WS 11.

1941/09/13

Arrived Freetown, Sierra Leone.

1941/09/18

Sailed from Freetown.

1941/10/03

Arrived Durban, South Africa.

1941/10/07

Changed ships to SS Johan de Witt and sailed from Durban.

1941/10/22

Arrived Bombay, India

1941/10/27

Sailed from Bombay.

1941/10/31

Called into Colombo, Sri Lanka.

1941/11/06

Arrived Singapore.

 

 

Upon disembarking the men were marched to the railway station where they entrained. 32 men were left at the docks to deal with weapons, stores and other equipment, for delivery over the next few days.

Instead of remaining together as a 4 battery regiment, the 80th Anti-Tank Regiment were informed that each gun crew would be operating independently under different commands.

Battery 2 and 215 were to come under the command of 11th Indian Division.

Battery 272 was to come under the command of 9th Indian Division.

Battery 273 was to come under the command of Malaya Command.

All battery’s were in action in Malaya.

There are no records to confirm which battery that Alfred operated with, but he did state 11th Indian Division on his Liberation Questionnaire.

Battery 272 were in action at Taiping, Kuala Krai, Gong Kedah Aerodrome, and Port Swettersham and reported mainly to the 5th Baluch Regiment.

Battery 2 and 215 were further north around Alor Star Aerodrome and Sungai Patarni.

1941/12/08

The Japanese land at Sungai Patarni and Khota Baru.

For the next 3 months the allied forces fought a retreating action throughout Malaya, with particular strong battles at places they thought would become a holding line such as the Slim River. However, this was not just a battle of troops as the Japanese  were jungle trained, had plenty of tanks, but most important had a massive airforce. The British and Australian airforce consisted of very old and slow aircraft such as Brewster Buffalo which were no match for the bombers and Zero fighters. Even the arrival of 50 Hurricanes that arrived in January only lasted a week.

1942/01/29

All allied troops have retreated to Singapore.

1942/02/15

Singapore surrenders to the Japanese

 

1942/04/06 - WO 417/41, Casualty List No. 790. Reported To War Office Casualty Section for the 24 hours ended at 09.00. Missing.

1942/10/07 - WO 417/52, Casualty List No. 948. (Previously shown on Casualty List No. 790 as Missing, 15/02/1942). Now reported a Prisoner of War.

 

Japanese PoW

1942/02/15 - Captured Singapore

Changi Camp

PoW No. M-7405

Japanese Index card - Side One

Bowers-Alfred-Robert-01

Japanese Index card - Side Two

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England Maru-2-tn

1942/10/25

Transported in the England Maru to Taiwan ‘Z’ Party with 1100 PoWs

Under Commander Lt-Col E.W.F Jephson, R.A, 5th Field HQ

1942/11/14

Arrived Keeling, Taiwan, transported to Kinkaseki with 500 PoWs

 

New PoW No. IV 1722

 

Worked in Copper Mine

1943/11/13

Left for Heito, Taiwan

 

Men were transferred when they became too sick to work. These were known as the ‘Thin Men Parties’.

 

Shirakawa Camp, Taiwan

1945/02/27

Transported from Keeling to Japan in Taiko Maru

1945/03/03

Arrived Moji, Japan

1945/03/06

Transported to Fukuoka 9B

 

New PoW No. 31758

1945/09/12

Liberated Fukuoka Branch 9 (Miyata Machi, Kurate Gun Fukuoka Ken)

 

 

1945/12/03

WO417/100, Casualty List No. 1926. Previously shown on Casualty List No. 948 as reported Prisoner of War now Not Prisoner of War. Previous Theatre of War, Malaya.

 

Died

2003

Essex

Information

Charlotte Sturges

Mike Heather

Japanese Transports

Japanese Homeland Camps

Liberation Questionnaire

KEW:- WO 361/1254, WO 392/23, WO 345/6, WO 361/1968, WO 361/2058, WO 361/2184, WO 361/1475,

*

''Our Thanks are for being a Chapter in Life.''

 

 

 

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