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A piece of ‘Changi’ Jail

Piece of Changi JailChangi is an area at the eastern end of Singapore Island, where Changi Prison Stood. This is where thousands of prisoners of the Japanese were kept during the Second World War.

In 2000, this prison was demolished. This piece of Changi jail is believed to be 1 of only 6 pieces left. It was given to Arthur Lane by the makers of a TV documentary entitled Sayonara Changi, because Arthur helped in the making of the programme.
Arthur Lane

In 1935, aged 15, Arthur enlisted as a drummer in the 1st Battalion Manchester Regiment. He served in Egypt and Palestine before being posted to Singapore. When the Japanese invaded Malaya in 1941, Arthur saw action as a machine gunner in the mainland campaign before being captured in Singapore City at its fall in February 1942.

During captivity, Arthur was appointed many tasks - including cookhouse manager, cattle herder, railway builder and bugler. As one of the only five or six British buglers in the camps, Arthur was given an armband which denoted him as 'Musician to the Dead'. The armband gave him greater freedom to move about the camps and Arthur attended thousands of funerals during this time.

After the war, Arthur became a private detective and then a publisher, specialising in books written by veterans of war. His own books include, When you Get Home, Where are all the Madmen, The Shadows of a Manchester Soldier and 70 days to Hell.

Arthur is also a founder member of the National Ex-Services Association www.nesa.org.uk External Websites and has been an active campaigner for veteran's causes since the 1980s and in 2011 was still at the helm of this organisation.

What does the plaque say?

From the walls of Changi Prison
We shall draw from the heart of suffering itself the means of inspiration and survival – Sir Winston Churchill.