4756259 Corporal James William WILLIAMS, 1/5th Sherwood Foresters, FEPOW

Discussion in 'Prisoners of War' started by Chris Bailey, Mar 28, 2020.

  1. Chris Bailey

    Chris Bailey Member

    Good evening

    I am hoping this great community will be able to help me out once again! Diving deeper in to my family research I have found another relative that was a prisoner of war in the far east.

    My first cousin three times removed was with the 1/5th Bn., Sherwood Foresters and sadly died in captivity on 8.8.43. It is all a little confusing as searching for this battalion on this site has thrown up stories of soldiers being captured by German forces?
    WILLIAMS_JAMES_WILLIAM Death record.pdf

    Seeing James's memorial is at Thanbyuzayat War Cemetery, Burma I soon released that he must have been captive in the Far East, not in a German POW camp.
    From previous advice giving on this site for my great grandad I knew to check the following site;

    James is here and listed as Corporal.

    Any additional information that people have on him, his battalion and their experience would be greatly appreciated.

    Best wishes

  2. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    The 1/5th was in the BEF in 1940.
    Maybe that is where you see men being captured by the Germans.
    Later at Singapore they were captured by the Japanese.
    Sherwood Foresters - Wikipedia
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  3. Enigma1003

    Enigma1003 Member

    James was sent to the Siam Railroad on 23/04/43 as part of the ill fated 'F Force'. His death is recorded as due to 'diarrhoea', which was a generalisation for neglect, cruelty, sickness and starvation. He died at Sonkrai Camp which is about 13Km south of the Three Pagoda Pass. Although he probably never went to Burma, the CWGC Cemetery was the closest to Sonkrai.

    Mike Williams.jpg
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  4. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member


    If you look at the documents for James on the CWGC website, it shows that he was originally buried at Sonkrai Cemetery, which was a work camp on the Burma Railway.

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  5. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Some info for you:
    Foresters on Singapore
    James Williams captured Singapore 15/2/42.
    Japanese Index Card:
    From 18 Div Pilot Roll compiled in Changi:
    Index Card is marked Overland 25/4/43, which would put James in 'F' Force going from Singapore to the Thai/Burma Railway.
    Death Railway

    I'll have a look tomorrow and see if I can find out more.

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  6. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Just noticed from Tim's input that he came from Shepherds Bush, just up from my footy team QPR. Walked along Bloemfontein Avenue many times over the years.
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  7. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Further to my last post here is info on Songkurai/Sonkrai Camp.

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  8. Chris Bailey

    Chris Bailey Member

    Thank you all! Yet again you have amazed me as to the information that can be found, such a great community on here.
  9. Chris Bailey

    Chris Bailey Member

    A lot of my family originate from that part of town, James's father was my Great Nan's Brother. Most of this side of the family were born and raised in Fulham.
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