The Selarang Camp Barracks was built between 1936-1938 to house an infantry battalion. During the Japanese Occupation, it was used by the Japanese Imperial Army to house Australian POWs. It is also the site of the infamous “Selarang Camp Barracks Square Incident”. On September 1942, the Japanese interned some 15,000 Allied soldiers at the Selarang Campbarracks under very poor living conditions until they signed a pledge of non-escape. Today, the Selarang Camp Barracks is a restricted military area belonging to the Singapore Armed Forces. Except for the officers’ mess and the headquarters, most of the original British buildings have been demolished.
The Pre-War and War Years
The Selarang Barracks, consisting of seven blocks built around a square, was constructed between 1936-1938 to house an infantry battalion. It was part of a larger British military base in Changi. Its first occupants were the soldiers from the 2nd Gordon Highlanders Battalion. During the Japanese Occupation, the Imperial Japanese Army used it to house the Australian POWs.
The Selarang Camp Barracks Square Incident
In 1942, four POWs (Corporal Rodney Breavington and Private Victor Gale from the Australian Imperial Force, Private Harold Waters from the East Surrey Regiment and Private Eric Fletcher from the Royal Army) attempted an escape from the Japanese but were recaptured. To prevent such future attempts, the Japanese wanted all POWs to sign a pledge of non-escape. This act contravened the Geneva Convention, which gave POWs the right to escape. The prisoners refused. To coerced them into signing, the Japanese crammed some 15,000 men, including the British POWs from the Changi camp, into the Selarang Camp Barracks which was originally intended for 800-1200 men. This incident took place on 2 September 1942.
Conditions in the barracks continued to worsen with the lack of food, water and proper hygiene. The number of cases of dysentery and diphtheria began to rise. The Japanese intensified their pressure with threats of cutting the water supply, halving rations, and moving the Robert Barracks Hospital to the Selarang Camp Barracks Square. This turned out to be the tipping point as the move would endanger the lives of gravely ill patients and also lead to the spread of diseases. To prevent the further loss of lives, Colonel E. B. Holmes ordered the POWs to sign the documents of non-escape. This was done on 5 September 1945 and many of the prisoners signed under false names. Ned Kelly, a legendary Australian outlaw, was a popular choice. All the prisoners were returned to their original barracks after that.
Selarang Camp Post-War Period
After the war, the barracks returned to the use of the British Army. In 1971, the barracks were handed over to Singapore Armed Forces and it has been the home of the 9 Division of the Armed Forces since March 1984. In 1991, the Selarang Camp was redeveloped at the cost of $50 million. With the exception of the officers’ mess and the headquarters, most of the old British buildings were demolished to make way for a new self-contained complex. The Selarang Camp remains a restricted military zone. It has, however, been opened for special visits by war veterans to commemorate 60th anniversary of the end of the World War II.
Thats where i now truely believe…
Selarang Camp Army Story, Changi, Mild
Selarang Camp Rating: 26
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Selarang Camp Hours (estimated)
Mon – Tue: 5:00 am – 3:00 am
Wed – Fri: 7:00 am – 12:00 am
Sat: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm, 1:00 am – 2:00 am
Sun: 9:00 am – 10:00 am, 7:00 pm – 4:00 am
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Bus Stop Selarang Camp Road:
Upper Changi Road North
Pasir Ris is primarily a residential area in Singapore comprising many high-rise residential dwelling blocks, mostly public housing built by the Housing and Development Board in Pasir Ris New Town. The town is located in the eastern part of Singapore.
Like other new towns, public transport facilities were factored into the development of Pasir Ris. Pasir Ris is easily accessible via bus services at Pasir Ris Bus Interchange and the Mass Rapid Transit at Pasir Ris MRT Station.
Selarang Camp, 30 Selarang Ring Road 507092
SELARANG CAMP 1 Selarang Ring Road Singapore 507087