Who’s Hilary?

Her father Barry Baker was with 27 Line Section.


Alan, Barry, and John

This is Hilary.


Click here for view her blog.

27 Line Section Royal Corps of Signals

In 1941 a Royal Corps of Signals unit of about 70 men, 27 Line Section, was created under Captain LBHC Baker (Barry). They sailed on the troop ship Orontes for the Far East, reaching Malaya in autumn 1941. Until the Fall of Singapore on 15 February 1942, they worked all over Malaya putting up communications lines. Some of the men are in this photo


taken in Kota Tinggi. The whole unit were captured by the Japanese and most of them worked on the Thailand-Burma Railroad. More than a third of them died.

In England Captain Baker’s wife, Phyllis, kept in touch with the mothers, wives and grandparents of the men. They wrote to her and there are hundreds of these letters. Some of them will be in a book about the survival of relationships between the relatives in England and Prisoners of War in the Far East.

Anyone who thinks they might be related to any of the men in 27 Line Section is welcome to get in touch. For a full list go to 27 Line Section.

Hilary has written the story of her father made prisoner by the Japanese in 1941…

Writing to a Ghost: Letters to the river Kwai 1941-1945 is a non-fiction project. I have access to exciting contemporary sources – letters and diaries. I also have the memoirs of the Far Eastern Prisoner of War (FEPOW) who wrote some of the letters. Perhaps even more exciting are the letters of around 70 women from all walks of life describing their experience of living without any news of their sons or husbands for three and a half years. All these sources, along with the letters from some of the men who survived, have been put together to make a chronological story of how relationships survived between the men on the Thailand-Burma railroad and their families back home.

(This book is a full draft. There are so many different voices that the layout needs a professional editor, but getting near one is proving very hard work. I am open to reshaping the project, but I would love to get this material out to interested bodies.

Click here to read her posts.

This is my favourite post. 

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1 Response to Who’s Hilary?

  1. gpcox says:

    I have taken care of that “follow” problem. Hilary has a wonderful blog, I’ve been following her for a while, your readers will certainly enjoy her.

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