Bukit Batok Memorials

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Bukit Batok Memorial

Bukit Batok Hill is the site where two memorials, the Syonan Chureito and the Allied Memorial, once stood. The Syonan Chureito was the Japanese memorial built to honour the Japanese war dead during the battle for Singapore. The Japanese used 500 British and Australian POWs from Sime Road Camp to build the Syonan Chureito. The Allied POWs also requested a memorial for their own war dead. The Japanese granted the request and a smaller POW monument was built behind the Chureito.

The Syonan Chureito was a 12-metre high wooden pylon crowned with a brass cone, and had the words 'chu rei to' on it, which meant 'the sacrifice made by the fallen soldiers'. Behind it stood a small hut that housed the ashes of those killed in the Battle of Bukit Timah. The British Memorial was a 3-metre high cross where the ashes of some of the British war dead were laid.

The Syonan Chureito was unveiled on 10 September 1942, while the British Memorial was unveiled a day later. The unveiling of the Chureito was accompanied by a religious ceremony and was attended by various military and civilian representatives. A small shrine at the rear of the memorial contained the ashes of soldiers who died in the Battle of Bukit Timah.

With the surrender of Japan, local Japanese forces destroyed the Chureito and removed the cross. Returning British forces blew up the concrete foundation. The ashes of the Japanese soldiers were subsequently transferred to the Japanese Cemetery Park at Chuan Hoe Avenue. Today, a television transmission tower occupies the site where the memorial used to stand. All that remains is the flight of steps that led to the memorials.