Welcome to the Cinderford Branch of The Royal British Legion
Remembering 18/3/2015. The Bridge over the River Kwai.
Article & pictures submitted by Dave Turner (Branch member)
A year ago, I took a daytrip from Bangkok to visit the bridge over the Kwai, and the Kanchanaburi Cemetery & Museum. My sister some sixteen years older than I, described to me as a nine year old, going to Cardiff Station, to see the arrival of our uncle, Edward returning from his time as a POW on the railway.
She saw him and ran away, before being introduced . His physical appearance frightened her. He survived, in part because of the compassion of the guards that he had; allowing him to get food from the wagons sufficient to survive. Most were not so lucky.
The cemetery is dominated by the British, a large section of Indian service personnel, and Dutch from the Dutch East Indies. It is like all such cemeteries, a sombre place, beautifully maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
The train still runs, and the bridge still functions, the coaches open air, the seats are wooden benches; hot and humid. I never met my uncle, there is only one photograph of him, that my sister had, a polaroid. But on that day I did remember him, and them.