Gerard Livesey 3529590 POW Thailand

Discussion in 'Prisoners of War' started by susantydd, May 22, 2023.

  1. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    I am trying to find info on a relative, I have a couple of document indexes and documents from FMP which lead me to believe Gerard Livesey was at some point sent to Camp 4 Thailand, he appears to be there on a list dated November 1944.
    One document relating to a POW camps has the following info
    old card number II 10380
    new card number II 3482
    Former camp M-2065.
    Can anyone please advise where is Camp 4, does it have a name ? Which camp is referenced by M-2065 ? when would he have been moved between camps ?

    Other document index points to a casualty list of 1942 Malaya but no other info other than mentions Gerard Livesey’s regiment - The Manchester Regiment and regimental number of 3529590.

    A later document ( not quite sure what it relates to someone kindly sent a screen shot but not what it related too) quotes L/1306/76 as a membership number, POW Captain Ht Singapore, worked on Burma Siam railway. I presume this is a membership to an organisation.

    Would anyone have any further info please, where and when he was captured, was he captured because he was wounded ? Anything relating to the camps he was held in and finally any details of his release.

    He survived the war, he was born in 1917 and passed away in 1982 in the Salford area. The only mention of his time as a POW was the Japanese and Thailand.

    Many thanks
  2. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron


    Welcome aboard. There is expertise here on the POWs after the fall of Singapore, hopefully they will be along soon. You are lucky as your request is seen often here. Generally we advise researchers to obtain the actual Service Record from the MoD (Army), it is the definitive record; yes, it can take time to arrive and there are issues about who now holds them: the MoD of the National Archives.
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  3. papiermache

    papiermache Well-Known Member

    Sue. Welcome to the forum. Good of David to call me an expert, but there are others, so he may have meant someone else!

    As indicated, you should apply for the service record. In the meantime, a short history of the 1st Battalion Manchester Regiment is here:

    1st Battalion

    Singapore Libraries provide digitised newspapers for Singapore and you should search for the name "Livesey". You will get references to a British film actor, but you will be pleasantly surprised. When you get to the welcome page just tick the conditions box and the newspaper article will load.

    Digitised Homepage

    I can confirm that there was only one "Livesey" serving in the Manchester Regiment in Singapore. There were other British regiments in Singapore pre-war. His previous address was in Salford. He was in Singapore at Changi jail from 15th October 1942, or shortly thereafter, until 27th October 1942, when he left for Thailand by train.

    He was originally in "camp" II and then in "camp" IV. These are usually referred to by the Allies as "Groups" rather than camps because there were large numbers in the groups - over 10,000 in the case of Group IV. Many civilians also helped to build the Thai Burma Railway - possibly up to 100,000 souls, usually in worse conditions than prisoners of war. Camps or sub-camps would change as work on the railway progressed.

    You should contact the Thai Burma Railway centre who will hold much more information about him. This will save you a huge amount of time. Good hunting, John.

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  4. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

    Just found this:
    It is amidst a long list of names from the Manchester Regiment:
    From: Manchester's of Singapore and their Fate..

    Whose home page is: The Manchester Regiment Group
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  5. travers1940

    travers1940 Well-Known Member

    As the Manchesters link given by papiermache said the 2nd Manchesters had been in Palestine in 1938 checked the GSM medal rolls for Gerard Livesey. He was not there, but it did show another Livesey which for purposes of elimination I show:

    3517466 CSgt/CQMS Livesey H. Sent back from Singapore to England August/September 1939 to be an instructor with the militia.
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  6. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    yes we believe the George Livesey on the H force list mentioned is in fact Gerard, the regimental number match. Not quite sure why he had that address though on the George name. Salford is the correct area, it was likely Broughton or Lower Broughton. I’ve just been chatting with one of his great nieces, her mother cared for Gerard in his later years. He had told her he ate bugs and rats to stay alive. I don’t think he ever truly recovered from his ordeal, she remembers him as very thin and you could see his bones and he shook terribly. I know the process for ordering service records has changed recently and I believe still a huge backlog of requests. I’ll update the family on the extra info you’ve all kindly found this evening. Thankyou very much for the help
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  7. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    Thankyou for all the replies.
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  8. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    the photos were a fabulous surprise
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  9. papiermache

    papiermache Well-Known Member

    Here is a photo of the roll prepared by the Bureau of Record and Enquiry in Changi - this was an Allied organisation which worked largely in secret. TNA file WO 361/2118. Could be either 27th October 1942 or the line above, 22/3/43, which I took to be for Pte Lindsay, given that there are deletions against that above name for the destination that was at the end of the line. The BRE had little in the way of paper, typewriter ribbons, pen, ink, etc. The TBRC will know. There appears to be no liberation questionnaire or war crimes form index card at Kew.

    I am sorry to hear about the family memories of your relative's poor health. Unfortunately all too common. Many ex-Fepows were cared for by the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine - they have a website dealing with FEPOWs.

    Far East Prisoners of War (FEPOW)

    This might be another photo of him in happier times.

    Last edited: May 22, 2023
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  10. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    Thankyou, yes I think that is another photo of him. I guessing the H force listing him as George is just a transcript error.
  11. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    This is Vernon Street, the address mentioned in Salford. 1939 register doesn’t show his name so assume already enlisted. They were quite large houses and it would appear to house several families , not sure if the houses were intentional multi occupancy or it was the effect of war and lack of housing.

    Attached Files:

  12. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    All a bit confusing. His Japanese Index Card shows him as George:
    He is listed as departing Changi, Singapore 27 Oct 42 in Letter Party V although his name is misspelt. 590 is the last three numbers of his Army No. and 47 is the cross reference to the Manchester Regt Roll.

    I am unclear why the Manchester Regt site has listed him as being in H Force.

    As previously suggested by others, if you contact the very helpful TBRC all should become clear.


    Attached Files:

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  13. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Add to my previous post.
    I cannot see Gerard/George listed in the Roll of H Force compiled at Kanu Camp (WO 361/2233).

  14. papiermache

    papiermache Well-Known Member

    Rough notes on the photo of "C" Company boxers, from WO 361/2118. Grim reading.

    "C" company of the Manchester Regiment, inter-company novices boxing champions for 1940:
    Standing (from left to right).

    LCpl Jackson now Cpl 3524261 "F" party and returned
    Pte Taylor 12 Taylors Note: Two 1 Manchester Taylors died on the Hofuku Maru There were 68 from the battalion on the vessel: only 21 were alive by the end of the day of the sinking. Some may have died later. Hofuku Maru
    Pte Hudson A M 3529455 reported dead
    LCpl Beech H 3533994 ovl 26/4/43 {CHA} {WP} died diarrhoea 19/9/43 Tambya Burma Grave 227
    LCpl Gregg no LCpl two privates both with F party both died
    Pte Evans - 5 evans
    Pte Shaw 6 shaws
    Pte Mullins; 3528303 F party and returned

    sitting ( from left to right ),
    LCpl Bennet[t] 3529801 died Sonkrai 30/8/43
    LCpl McDonnell 3529494 ovl 22/6/42
    Capt. T. Mangnall ovs 27.10.42 ovs 28.10.42
    Pte Wren 3528919 ovl 30/4/43 died diarrhoea 4/7/43 Changaraya Thailand
    Pte Jones; 10 jones

    on ground ( from left to right ),
    Pte. Hill, two Hills
    Pte Livesey see above

    {Free Press Picture}
    Last edited: May 23, 2023
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  15. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    Other info we have already from FMP and Ancestry plus the entry where he is named as George.

    Attached Files:

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  16. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    Thanks for the documents. As a matter of interest where he has listed his father and mother he has used his brother William and either his sister Elizabeth, Elizabeth was 15 years older than Gerard and William five years older. To confuse things even more the family surname of his siblings was McGee. He spent his later years living with William and Williams daughter cared for him in his final years.
  17. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Now here's a conundrum. Last attachment on #15 is a transcript of Gerard's application to the Burma Star Association.
    Livesey, Gerard - L/1306/76 - Burma Star Memorial Fund

    To be a member of this Association one had to hold either the Burma Star or the Pacific Star with the Burma Clasp. As far as I can tell Gerard had neither. On the application form he has crossed out 'I hold' (decorations) and inserted 'Entitled to Burma Star, 1939-45, Defence, War'. No mention of the Pacific Star to which he was certainly entitled. Perhaps he never applied for his medals and just guessed wrong thinking he was entitled to a Burma Star. Being on the Thai-Burma Railway as a POW gave no entitlement to this medal. The Medal Office was not infallible and sometimes issued the incorrect medal.
    As it seems the Association passed the application it may be they muddled 1st Btn and 2nd Btn Manchester Regiment.

    Sue - if nobody in the family have Gerard's medals it would be worth contacting the Medal Office to see if they were ever issued (issue in WW2 was not automatic, they had to be claimed). If they have not been issued then NOK can claim them.

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  18. papiermache

    papiermache Well-Known Member

    The documents from FMP and Ancestry at post 15 are from the National Archives files below:

    Reference: WO 361/2196
    Prisoners of war, Far East: British POWs in Thailand and Saigon as at 1st August 1945; nominal roll
    { no former reference listed by TNA }

    Reference: WO 361/1947
    Prisoners of war, Far East: Malaya POW Camp, name list, as of 1 November 1944; volume II
    Former reference in its original department: Archives File No 3401-2

    It would be very easy to have an imprint or identifier of the TNA file reference on every image FMP and Ancestry put online......

    It is interesting to see the other documents found online.

    A Japanese calendar explanation is here: Japanese year converter

    To obtain a Japanese character use Google translate but ask for translation to Chinese (traditional ), so the IJA card at post 12 has versions of these:

    泰 Thailand

    馬來 Malaya

    英 British

    新加坡 Singapore

    勞動者 Labourer

    The TBRC will help much more, I am certain.
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  19. susantydd

    susantydd Junior Member

    Hi again,
    I emailed the TBRC yesterday and Terry very kindly looked into more details. There was a condition on his email that the info he provided was confidential. I can say though poor Gerard was quite poorly and spent quite some time in hospital, Tuberculosis, Malaria and Bronchitis.
    Many thanks to you all that have helped the past couple of days with documents, help and the advise to contact TBRC.
    The memorial plaque will be ordered shortly, and some family have a trip to Thailand planned next year and hope to visit the relevant areas.
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  20. papiermache

    papiermache Well-Known Member


    I'm glad you have found out a great deal in a short time. We all pick up tips from other people researching. The Singapore newspapers articles are fascinating. You might like to consider going to LIverpool next month for a conference. I had not come across this site before. Apart from that, my tip would be to read books published soon after the war. rather than those published later. "The War Diaries of Weary Dunlop" are probably the best because they are just that, largely unedited diary entries by an extraordinary and inspirational Australian doctor. I think there is an internet e something book available. I have a Penguin version.

    There are many articles by returning FEPOW RAMC staff to be found in the archives of the Journal of the RAMC.

    Homepage | BMJ Military Health

    For example:

    Dietary Deficiency Diseases Among Prisoners of War

    The conference website



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