Changi Museum is dedicated to the period that Singapore was caught up in WWII and documents the lives of those who were incarcerated in Changi prison, and lived and died in there during those traumatic times. Documents, photographs, paintings, letters and personal effects of military and civilian POWs held in Changi prison from 1942 to 1945 provide poignant details of life during an almost forgotten time. The central courtyard of the museum houses the chapel that was relocated from its original site near the Changi prison.
Visitors are introduced to the museum through the history of Japanese military expansion in Southeast Asia and a remembrance wall naming the military units that defended Singapore. Life in Changi prison is laid bare through artifacts and memorabilia, a replica of a Changi prison cell into which a piece of the original wall and a cell door has been incorporated, and story boards that describe incidents in the life of the prisoners. Audio recordings of stories of heroism and survival of men and women POWS add to the harrowing record of events during those tumultuous times. A collection of 400 sketches and paintings by POW Harry Haxworth, paintings by Mary Angela Bateman and a replica of the Changi Murals painted by POW Stanley Warren on the walls of the prison hospital are the centre pieces of the museum’s collection and gives insights into prison life from the perspectives of civilian and military POWs.
Other interesting artifacts include rare books and literature on life in Singapore during WWII displayed at the ‘Changi University’ named after the informal education programme in the prison. Even prison entertainment has not been forgotten. The Kokonut Grove, where highly imaginative nightly entertainments were held, is represented here. Unfortunately, video screenings of life in Changi had to replace live performances. The “End of War” display highlights events that took place during the surrender in 1945. The centre piece of the artifacts here is a prized 15th century samurai sword surrendered by a Japanese General. Visitors can light a candle at the Changi chapel to remember those who gave their lives so that others may live or attend services that are still held there. A database in the museum’s resource centre has information on 5,000 civilian POWs.
The St Regis Singapore, part of a brand of ultra luxurious establishments around the world, lives up to the expectations of its discerning clientele with top of the line services, facilities and amenities. Experience the gracious ambience of one of the lauded luxury hotels Singapore that offers its guests impeccable service right from arrival through to departure and a host of luxurious facilities and amenities. Among the lavish accommodation offered by the hotel are Singapore luxury suites that are the most talked about in town, and are linked to some of the best privileges on offer.
Angela Fernando is an impassioned travel writer who composes pieces under the pen name Sumaira Narayan. She loves writing about new and exciting places around the world and hopes to visit them all someday. Google+