Author Topic: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma  (Read 6475 times)

mariemckie

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Hi, can anyone please help me with information or a photograph of my Great Uncle ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, Warrant Officer Class II (C.S.M), 1st Battalion, Manchester Regiment (Service No. 3524843). Lived in Ashton-under-Lyne.

I know from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website that he died on 19 March 1944, Aged 31 and that he is buried in Chungkai War Cemetery, Thailand.

I am tring to find out a little more information about his time in Burma. If possible, I would like to find out if he was a POW, which camp he was held at and also how he died (through illness, killed in action, other).

It would also be heart-warming to know if anyone has any memories of Arthur.

My deceased grandfather (his younger brother) could not bring himself to talk about Arthur when he was alive, and unfortunatly he has no other surviving brother or sisters.
 
I am hoping to visit Arthur's grave at Chungkai next year, on behalf of my family, and it would be helpful to know a little more about his time in Burma in order to pay him my respects and to understand what he went through during WW2.

Any additional info would be much appreciated.

Many thanks!

Marie :)

Offline Wendi

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2008, 02:00:25 PM »
Hi Marie and Welcome to our Forum  ;D

From what you have said, you would appear to be Arthur's next of kin, and as such would be able to apply for his service record from

http://www.veterans-uk.info/service_records/army.html

It currently costs £30 and there is quite a long wait, but it should be worth it, particularly, as you say, you are hoping to visit his last resting place.

By the way, we have a project going to collect photographs of all Manchester Regiment Graves.  It's headed up by tisgrannie, who has done a great job, and I'm sure would love to recruit you for your visit to Chungkai  ;D

Our discussions on this subject are here http://themanchesters.org/forum/index.php?board=8.0

and photos, so far, are here http://www.flickr.com/photos/74178729@N00/

Wendi  :)

"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it!  No matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and with your own common sense" ~ Buddha

mariemckie

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2008, 03:29:06 PM »
Dear Wendi,

Thank you so much for your reply. I never expected an answer so quickly! ;D
Thank you for your kind welcome... Hi everyone! ;)

I believe my mum with be Arthur's first living relative so I have printed the form from the web link that you gave me and we will complete it tonight, and get the ball rolling!

I also had a look at the photos too, what a great project! I will gladly help if I can.
As soon as I book the flights, etc I will let everyone know and I will try to take a photo of all the Manchester Regiment graves (if known).

Thank you for your help once again, I appreciate it very much. ;)
Keep up the good work!

Marie xxx

Offline rafboy

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2008, 10:20:03 PM »
Hi Marie,
There is a little A4 booklet available from the Regimental Museum in Ashton Under Lyne with the title "First Battalion The Manchester Regiment Malaya, Thailand, Burma 1939 ~ 1945" which I think you would find interesting.  Your Great Uncle is in the "Roll of Honour" in this booklet.  It is almost certain he was taken prisoner with the Battalion at the fall of Singapore on 15th February 1942 as was my father, he would have spent some time as a POW in Singapore in Changi and other POW camps before being moved up to Thailand and Burma to work on the "Death Railway".  My father was shipped to Taiwan and was lucky enough to survive.  The booklet I mentioned has your Great Uncle as being in one of the groups 1 to 6 of POW's sent to Thailand and Burma.
There is a book "The Story of Changi Singapore" by David Nelson ISBN 0 9503243-0-2 (my copy came from Changi museum).  This is written from records kept by a group of officers in Changi it has details of POW movements from Singapore to Thailand and Burma, "A" Force comprised the first group of 3000 Australians sent to Burma by sea on May 14th 1942 this was followed by 5 parties of 600 each British sent overland on June 18, 20, 22, 24 and 26th to Bam Pong.
In addition to your Great Uncle's Service Record you should find his Japanese POW Record Card in the National Archive at Kew this will detail his movements as a POW, mostly in Japanese which I can get translated.  Themonsstar who is galivanting around New Zealand at the moment may already have a copy of it.
Have a look at the photo section on the forum, in the Far East section are two photos of different groups of POW's almost certainly taken in Singapore shortly after capture, so far 5 have been identified with another 2 awaiting further confirmation, all identified are Manchesters.
I am in touch with Janet Gleave her Great Uncle Stephen Cooney is in one of the POW group photos, Stephen died on the "Railway".  Jan is planning a visit next year and is making some tour arrangements in Thailand with The Thailand Burma Railway Centre which sound very interesting.  See:  http://www.tbrconline.com/
Cliff   
Cliff P Son of 3525679 Sgt Arthur Phillips 1st Bn Manchester Regiment and RAPC

Offline rafboy

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2008, 10:46:49 AM »
Hi again Marie
This came to me from Arthur Lane, it is some of his memories of your Great Uncle.

"Cliff,
       I knew Myerscough from the old days, and watched his promotion from being L/Cpl and post corporal to staff sergeant in C company, We always called him Bill, I don’t know why. His promotion to CSM came as a war substantive promotion, that was when all SNCO’s went up a notch. In Singapore he was based at Telok Paku on the north Changi beach head, A happy golucky lad. I remember him around July/August 1943 when I was with a small group working in Conquita, apparently we were the misfits of Chungkai. The Japs allowed us to have a yasme (Rest) day for some reason, and although we were only a small group we had a bit of a sing song. I remember distinctly Bill Myerscough, a blond haired lad. He stood up and sang “ Overhead the moon is gleaming.” He was very good too, that was the same night that Frank Bailey and Macdonell set fire to the Jap supply store.
Bill was cremated and I sounded the last post at his funeral in Chungkai."

I will PM you later, with some information on Arthur Lane, you may want to get hold of some of his books, I will include some links to web sites that may be of interest, they have been posted in replies to others on the Forum so i won't include them now.
Cliff
« Last Edit: August 17, 2008, 11:15:50 AM by rafboy »
Cliff P Son of 3525679 Sgt Arthur Phillips 1st Bn Manchester Regiment and RAPC

Offline harribobs

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2008, 09:53:08 PM »

excellent Cliff!
“It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply
  to serve as a warning to others."

mariemckie

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2008, 08:23:54 PM »
Dear Cliff,

Thank you for all your information. I will send you a personal email so that I don't block up the forum.

Arthur if you are reading this; thank you so much for explaining what type of person my great uncle was, it is very heart-warming to know that he was a happy chap and also quite funny. I love the story of him singing and the others getting up to mischief. I hope they weren't caught!!

I told my Nana about him also being nicknamed "Bill" and in her typical northern humour she said that
"it was probably because everyone was called Arthur in those days!"
Arthur was called Arthur (of course!), his dad was called Arthur, you are called Arthur,
she said " I bet arthur regiment were called Arthur!!" Bom Bom!! She's quite a comedienne. ;D
I guess it just avoided confusion with the same names...

She also gave me an old photo of Arthur, it is the only one that his brother (my grandad) had of him. I will scan it in to the computer and I will add to the website so that you can see.

Once again thank you very much, you have made me feel very proud to be part of his family  :-*

Best wishes,

Marie x

Offline rafboy

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2008, 09:07:52 PM »
It is a pleasure to be able to help Marie.
Arthur was obviously a very popular name then, my father was an Arthur.
I will make sure Arthur Lane sees your reply.
Cliff
Cliff P Son of 3525679 Sgt Arthur Phillips 1st Bn Manchester Regiment and RAPC

Offline harribobs

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2008, 10:19:30 PM »

Arthur was obviously a very popular name then, my father was an Arthur.

Cliff

so was mine  ;D
“It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply
  to serve as a warning to others."

aiden

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2008, 09:14:06 PM »
Hi Marie. Hope You're OK.
I have just discovered this site and made a post about my Grandad. Bob Hughes from Clayton. I think there is a chance that they were in contact. Let's see what unfolds...
All the best!
Damian Quinn
I put my son's name as sign in 'cos he came with me to Ashton Library and wants to know....

mariemckie

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #10 on: October 03, 2008, 12:05:38 PM »
Hi Damian,

I'm really well! Thanks for asking. Hope you are too! ;)
Thanks for the info – I hope you can find some link - that would be nice!

I will send you a personal message with the information that I currently know about my great uncle.
I have photos, POW cards and a lot of background information that Cliff Phillips (rafboy) kindly passed to me.
Maybe some of it will help with your research.

I will email you shortly.

Take care,
Marie ;D

Offline rafboy

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2009, 12:42:29 AM »
Hello again Marie.
I thought you would like the attached photo.
I now have photos of all the Manchester Regiment graves in Chunkai, Kanburi and Kanchanaburi cemeteries.  They are all copyright so I cannot pass them all on to the Forum.  I do however have permission to pass individual ones on to family members.  They came to me on a CD and I still have to load them onto my PC and produce an alphabetical listing on an XL file which I can pass on to the Forum, that will be a long job as at the moment the photos are all identified by file references.  These photos were obtained for me by my friend Michael Hurst MBE who runs the Taiwan POW Memorial Society, earlier this year he visited Thailand photographed the Kanchanaburi graves and obtained the others from his friend who runs the Thailand Burma Railway Centre.  The poppy on the photo attached shows it is copyright of the TBRC.
Cliff
Cliff P Son of 3525679 Sgt Arthur Phillips 1st Bn Manchester Regiment and RAPC

mariemckie

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Re: ARTHUR FRANK MYERSCOUGH, 1st Battalion, Manchester Regt - Died in Burma
« Reply #12 on: November 13, 2009, 01:27:23 PM »
Thank you Cliff,

This is beautiful and really made me smile  :)

I have never seen a photo of the actual gravestone close up so it is lovely to see the inscription written on it.

I can't thank you enough for sending this to me, and I also thank Micheal Hurst for sending the photos to you and the wonderful local people who look after all the graves on a daily basis. It means a lot to me and my family.

Thank you once again. I'll send you a PM too.

x Marie