by Don Few
Built by 18th Division Royal Engineers
Mixture of TA and National Servicemen
Architect & Designer
Capt. C D Pickersgill
Drawings done by
Sappers D Lawrence & J Munton
560th Field Coy RE
Construction under supervision of
Cpl Wisker 288th Field Coy RE
Cpl R Duke 287th Field Coy RE (died 8.2.03)
Cpl R Ralf 288th Field Coy RE
and others whose names are not known
Sapper Ringer 287th Coy RE
Sited at entrance to Changi Camp Burial Site where they remained until the re-occupation of Singapore. The graves were then moved from the burial site to Kranji War Cemetery and the Lychgates were dismantled and stored.
December 1952 - erected at the entrance to St. Georges Garrison Church, Tanglin Barracks, Singapore. Dedicated and blessed by the Garrison Chaplain, Rev F W H White and the Preacher, Rev G M R Bennett, who himself had been a POW.
Moved to UK
April 1971 - during the run down and withdrawal of the British Garrison from Singapore the gates were dismantled, shipped to the UK, and brought to Bassingbourn Barracks.
Reassembly at Bassingbourn
December 1972 - after the gates had been re-assembled at Bassingbourn the first Lychgates Reunion was held there on 16th December 1972. A very large number of ex-FEPOWs attended.
Memorial Services were held at the gates annually for the first 5 years after their assembly at Bassingbourn and then bi-annually until 20th August 1995. All these services were organised by the Cambridge Yasume Club in conjunction with the Army Unit in residence at the time. The upkeep of the gates was also carried out jointly.
A service took place at Bassingbourn on the 8th March 2003 to commemorate the formal transfer of the gates to the care of COFEPOW and the National Memorial Arboretum. To read COFEPOW Chairman Carol Cooper's speech at this service please click here.
The Changi Lychgates have now been moved for the last time, to take up their permanent resting place in the National Memorial Arboretum at the entrance to the FEPOW plot..