1st Bn The Queen's After The Cessation Of Hostilities

A tour of duty in Siam

Chapter 5

On 14th August 1945, Japan unconditionally surrendered, and the task of the British forces in Burma was virtually over. The 7th Indian Division was ordered to Bangkok to assist in the liberation of Siam after the Japanese occupation. The 1st Queen’s moved to Bangkok early in October, and found a friendly people and a city that had known no wartime restrictions.

The Queen's did not take long to regain their traditional smartness in turnout, and in the bearing and drill required for guards and ceremonial parades. An important aspect of their duties was the screening and disposal of our former enemies. There were 140, 000 Japanese troops and civilians in Siam who had to be administered and sorted into those believed guilty of war crimes, others for further examination and the great majority of ordinary fighting soldiers. The first two categories were sent to Singapore for trial and the remainder repatriated to Japan.

In September 1946, news was received of the closing down of British Troops Siam. As the only British battalion to have served in Siam, the Queen's had found their year there a novel and interesting experience. The troops had fulfilled their role in good style, and they left with a record of smartness, good manners and efficiency.


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