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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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The Cook In The Cookhouse

by cambsaction

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Archive List > Family Life

Contributed by 
cambsaction
People in story: 
Edward Belcher "Ted".
Location of story: 
Java, Japan and Kent
Background to story: 
Royal Air Force
Article ID: 
A5472911
Contributed on: 
01 September 2005

(This story was submitted to the Peoples War website by a volunteer from Radio Cambridgeshire Action Desk) at Barnabus Court on behalf of Ted Belcher and has been added to the site with his permission. Mr Belcher fully understands the site's terms and conditions).

I was taken as a Prisoner of War in Java and I finished up in Japan. I was a FEPOW for 3 and half years in Japan. Most of the chaps worked on the dockyard near by but I worked in the cook house on the camp. For the men who worked on the docks they were marched down there everyday. In the cookhouse mainly I cooked rice and normal vegetables but nothing extraordinary; we also had a bit of fish. We used to have to supply the camp staff and we got friendly with them, including the camp commandant — we even cooked his meals as well as his staff. They ate the same kinds of foods as us and they used to ask us if we had children or were married so we were treated as well as could be expected.

After the war ended we were sent to Tokyo where we took a boat to Australia. We stayed there at Warwick Farm until we could come back to England. And then I went back home to Kent, where I stayed with my family. This was at the end of 1945 and that’s when I met my future wife Marie walking home with my sister to pick her bike up, and that was it love at first site! And we’ve now been married 59 years.

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