HM Motor Launch 310 - Singapore 1942,

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by Uncle Jack, Mar 4, 2013.

  1. DavidBruce

    DavidBruce Member

    Many thanks for this Robin. Tomorrow I will scan and post Johnny Bull's Official Report. Together with Ian Stonor's and Geo. Atkins' we will have a pretty comprehensive view of the events. I have a large pile of material which makes for more interesting reading but I hope you'll understand if I keep some of my powder dry, bearing in mind I am putting it all in a book.
    FYI - My book manuscript has been accepted by a local publisher. The editing process is time-consuming but it could be printed in time for Xmas. You will be among the first to hear!
     
  2. DavidBruce

    DavidBruce Member

    PS: George A. appears to have been the most robust of the senior officers. His D.O.B. is not noted on the report, but I'm assuming that, as a Wing Commander, he was older.
     
  3. DavidBruce

    DavidBruce Member


    Hi Jo,
    I Have some material that might help, about the experience of some of the other men on ML310, particularly the 3 who escaped the island in search of rescue for those who remained behind. A lot of it is based on the report of the C.O. on ML310 Sub-Lt Johnny Bull which forms the basis of the inclusion in the book Wavy Navy. I have a copy of his original report & other material he wrote, but am having difficulty loading it into this website which won't accept the seven pages. I'm still working at it so I hope this reaches you and you stay connected, I'll get there in the end.
    DavidB.
     
  4. Kingsley

    Kingsley New Member

    Hello All

    On behalf of my father Robert Flower, I'm in the process of trying to find out any information on his uncle Robert William Flower (C/JX204280) who was a crew member of the ML310. Robert left Ireland as young man and made his way to England where he signed up as an Able Seaman, we don't have much more information apart from that and the shared information on this site. If anyone can provide direction where to find additional information/military records it would be greatly appreciated,

    We Will Remember Them...

    Regards, Kingsley Flower
     
  5. DavidBruce

    DavidBruce Member

    Kia ora Kingsley. Another fortuitous event - I have just penned a communique to the moderator to see how to post some information, then opened my emails to find this posted just a few hours ago.
    I have nothing specific about your great uncle Robert Flower however, assuming he was an AB in the Royal Navy, he may have found his way onto 310 as crew either by being posted to Singapore in a draft intended to man the Fairmiles (as were the New Zealanders) or as a survivor from Repulse (as were a number of the rest.) If he was drafted to man the Fairmiles he might appear in the record as being trained at one of the specialist bases such as Fort William or I think Portland; or you might be able to track him through records relating to the Repulse.
    If you are able to flesh out Robert's story I will do my best to put it into the book I am writing about the event.
    We will remember them.
     
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  6. KevinBattle

    KevinBattle Senior Member

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  7. Kingsley

    Kingsley New Member

    Thank you David for information, really appreciate your feedback. Please see photo attached where my great uncle Robert was laid to rest in Kranji, Northern Singapore.

    We Will Remember Them...
     

    Attached Files:

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  8. DavidBruce

    DavidBruce Member

    Thank you for the contact Kingsley, and the photo. On 11 September I took myself to Singapore, part of the final phase of research for my book. Having spent many years of flying into Singapore in an earlier life, I found it necessary to return and visit the places I had overlooked (not realising their significance to me at the time.) In Fact then the "Battle Box' had yet to be uncovered. The Battle Box at Fort Canning was very well presented and the visit enhanced by an excellent guide. The adjacent hotel is also important, being the Command HQ before they were forced underground. The Changi tour was more orthodox, the original prison largely gone save for a section of wall and 2 watch towers - you only have to see them to be transported.... Instead, there is an interesting museum, the visit again enhanced by the same tour guide. The tour included visiting one of the Changi 6" gun emplacements, somewhat underdeveloped as a destination. Kranji Commonwealth War Cemetery is at the end of the MRT line (commuter rail). Familiar to anyone who has visited a CWC. And of course I sought out the graves of the men on 310, including your great uncle, who lies in a row which includes the Air Vice Marshall & the Rear Admiral. Somehow I expected them to be interred somewhere else, apart from the rank & file, in an officers section perhaps, and was gratified to discover otherwise. I'm certain their shared experience on Bangka Island was equalising, and engendered a special cameraderie - not that they chose where they lay. You may already be aware that those that died on the island were removed to Kranji after the war so to be interred there as a unit was clearly someone else's decision and for all I know may even have been policy. I have photographs but right now neither the time nor the skill to post them but I promise to do so shortly. Working as a tour guide myself, I am currently immersed in the busiest of seasons.
    By the way, my journey also took me to Malaya, where I hired a driver and travelled down the east coast from Malacca to Muar and Batu Pahat, scoping the coast, rivers and towns that 310 touched upon, landing raiding parties and evacuating stragglers. I'm glad I did, discovering that things were not exactly as I had imagined (or remembered from that earlier life) and have revised my manuscript accordingly. That includes writing your Uncle Robert more prominently into the story.
    Kind regards to you, and stay connected, David Bruce.
     
  9. Kingsley

    Kingsley New Member

    On the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month we will remember them...
     
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  10. michaelpether

    michaelpether Junior Member

    You may have already resolved this one but I add that I have today come into possession ( via his family) of a report by Lt. Cdr. H. D. Campey, RANVR ' ex-S.O.,Ist Singapore M.L. Flotilla' dated September 9th ,1942 , To 'The Captain, Coastal Forces, East Indies Station'. Campey was the senior officer for the contingent of British , Australians etc - all from being trained at 'HMS Attack' and sent out from the UK in November 1941 which arrived in Singapore on 13 January 1942 to take over manning of the ML Flotilla from local MRNVR and Malay Navy personnel. The report is written by Campey at the end of three and a half years of harsh POW captivity in Palembang, Sumatra. He had been Captain of ML 433 when it was sunk. He lists the crew for ML 310 that came out from the UK - amongst which is A.B. Hlower (obviously a typo error) with the notation that his fate was 'Unknown'.My current objective is writing up other evacaution vessels which include 'Pulo Soegi', ML311 , ML433 etc in detail and identifying who was on board each.
     
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  11. Uncle Jack

    Uncle Jack Member

    Great idea - look forward to seeing more. I'm very interested in ML310 as my Uncle Ronnie was on board.
     
  12. michaelpether

    michaelpether Junior Member

     
  13. michaelpether

    michaelpether Junior Member

    hello David, I am an amateur history researcher who focuses on the ships sunk in the evacuation of Singapore .You can see some of the 'memorial documents ' I have written on the COFEPOW and Malayan Volunteer Group websites. I am currently finishing off the document on ML311 and of course your godfather 'Tim' Hill , RNZNVR was a survivor of that sinking. I am interested in filling out the story of how he reached Java where he became a POW. i would appreciate you contacting me by email ( i live in Takapuna, Auckland, New Zealand) on mncpether@xtra.co.nz. thanks, Michael Pether.
     

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