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SS Java in the Second World War 1939-1945 - The Wartime Memories Project -

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- SS Java during the Second World War -


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World War 2 Two II WW2 WWII

SS Java



12th February 1942 Sumatra abandoned; 27 Squadron disbanded

15th February 1942 Evacuation from Sumatra

20th Feb 1942 Evacuation

26th Feb 1942 Evacuation from Java


If you can provide any additional information, please add it here.



Those known to have sailed in

SS Java

during the Second World War 1939-1945.

The names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List

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Albert James Fowler HMS Mauritius

My father served on HMS Mauritius, until he was transferred to the Dutch Cruiser Java which was sunk in Feb.1942. His name was Albert James Fowler and he was a leading telegraphist.

Anne Hill



LAC. Jack Stuart Wilkinson B Flight 84 Squadron

FEPOW 84th Squadron Reunion Nov 1948

Dog Tag Front

Dog Tag Back

84th Squadron Reunion Nov 1948 group

Jack Wilkinson enlisted in the RAFVR on 25th Jan 1940 and was assigned to 84th Squadron (Blenheim IV’s). His Service Record as recorded by war office) shows: 22nd Jul 1940 to the Middle East stationed in Southern Greece and Crete at the RAF Base at Herecklion; then to Iraq at Mosul; to Egypt at Giza and then in Tel Aviv, Then stationed in Southern Greece at Heliopolis. The aircraft left for Palembang on 13th January 1942. The main route the aircraft took was by way of Habbaniya, Bahrein Island, Sharjah, Karachi, Allahabad, Calcutta (Dum-Dum), Toungoo, Rangoon, Lhoknga, Pakan Baros to Palembang. The Sea Party left Heliopolis at 21.00 hours on the 16th of January and reached Port Tewfik at about 04.00 hours on the 17th, and then embarked on "HT Yoma" during the forenoon and left about 14.00 hours same day. They sailed via Aden and Colombo to Oosthaven, Sumatra, where they arrived on the 14th February (the day that the Japanese parachute troops invaded Palembang (P1) aerodrome. On the 23rd Jan 1942 the Squadron retreated to Oosthaven, then by boat to the northern tip of Java on the SS ”Silverlarch” On the 15th Feb 1942 by train to Batavia (Jakarta) where they were billeted in Dutch Barracks at Meesters Cornelis. They were at Kalidjati aerodrome for only 48 hours and then were attacked by the Japanese. They left by convoy to Bandoeng. On 6th March 1942 they abandoned Bandoeng and made for Tlilajap on south coast to search for escape ship. On the 7th April 1942 in Sumatra at Pelembang.

On the 3rd July 1942 he was captured by Japanese forces, transferred to Boei Glodok Jail (Batavia). He was subsequently moved to PoW camp on Java – transferred via a port on the Rio Janeiro Maru, then to Ambon, to the Molucas Islands, to Singapore and finally to Pakan Baroe (the other 'death railway').

He was freed on the 2nd Sept 1945 and returned home via Singapore to Liverpool on SS Monowai, stopping at Adabiya and Suez. He arrived home and was granted 117 days leave from No.104 PDC Dispersal Centre. On the 8th January 1946 he was released from RAF service.

Kim Wilkinson



J. Talens

During the Second World War I lived in the Dutch East Indies with my parents. My father was segeant engineer on board the cruiser SS Java. He died during the Battle of the Java Sea. My mother, elder brother, younger sister and myself with interned for three and a half years in Japanese internment camps.

After the war the so-called `Bersiap' period started and we were again put in the internment camps for our own protection. We were protected against attacks by the Indonesians, first by the Japanese and later by the British, Sikhs and Gurkhas. On 10th February 1946 were left the last internment camp to return to the Netherlands.

J. Talens



William Taylor 151 Maintenance Unit

My grandfather William Taylor, spent time in a Java POW Camp. He was serving with RAF Maintenance Unit 151 or 153. I would like to know which camps they were held in. There are stories that he and other POWs were involved in airfield building.

Gerry Dee







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