George ReynoldsWhat a man. What a history. In his interview he talks about wanting to regale his kids with stories like his father told him. He could never have imagined the stories he would share...
George Reynolds – Film 1George Reynolds was born in Wolverhampton on the 21st of July 1918. He moved to South Wales and decided that before he settled down with a wife and family he wanted to experience a bit of the world. The army seemed to be a good calling.
George Reynolds – Film 2On the 8th of March 1937 George enlisted in the army and went on to do his basic training at Woolwich. He goes on to volunteer for a draft to India and joins the 28th Field Regiment. On his arrival he starts a signallers course and recalls many of the visual methods used at the time to communicate messages.
George Reynolds – Film 3Despite the almost universal mechanisation of the artillery in the 1930s, the 28th Field Regiment still used horses. George talks in detail about his daily work with them. As a Signaller one of his key jobs was the laying the communications wire; this was done with a roller on the backside of a horse who always seemed to now when the wire was about to reach the end.
George Reynolds – Film 4A the regiment becomes mechanised the horses are surplus to requirements and sent to the plains to be destroyed. Now the fun and games start and Georges character shines through. When hes asked to take a driving test he cant hold his tongue and the Sgt Major gets involved.
George Reynolds – Film 5George learns that the 15th Field Regiment still uses horses and volunteers to join them. Based near Lahore he then moves to Haiti Camp not far from the Khyber Pass.. Along with 20 others and his dog he moves to the 5th Field Regiment in Nowshera. By this time George is starting to get wise to the ways of the army and he decides to undersell his abilities.
George Reynolds – Film 6This is a very funny film where George talks about the moment his SM finds out that he isnt quite as useless as hes pretended. With a choice of Lucknow Prison or proving himself as a Signaller, George does the sensible thing.
George Reynolds – Film 7The 5th Field Regiment moves to Singapore and George finds himself in Alexandra Hospital with malaria. After a period of convalescence he re-joins his Regiment at Ipoh before moving to Kota Bharu to fight the Japanese. He shares some interesting insight into Japanese spying methods.
George Reynolds – Film 8On withdrawing from Kota Bharu his gun is trapped under a tree. Soon after several of his gun crew desert him and an argument ensues with his commanding officers. To this day George thinks that the argument could have got him killed because orders fail to reach him telling him to withdraw.
George Reynolds – Film 9George recalls a bomb happy incident. After The Battle of Kota Bharu the Japanese chased the allied forces back to Singapore. wNow based in Changi Village hes able to fire into Malaya. Its an epic battle and hes determined to use every bit of ammunition that is left before the inevitable capture.
George Reynolds – Film 10When Singapore falls, George is marched to Changi. Soon afterwards hes on the England Maru destined for Taiwan. All the POWs are dispersed to different camps on the island. George's home is Taihoku or camp number 5. He spends the next 9 months digging a lake would be his new home for the next 9 months digging a lake.
George Reynolds – Film 11The Kinkaseki copper mine was his next stop and conditions were terrible. George describes the work and talks about the mis-treatment they suffered with the handle of a toffee hammer. As the months grind on they start to sense that the Japanese war is not going as well as they might hope.
George Reynolds – Film 12In 1945 at a camp called Shirakawa in the southern part of Taiwan, the POWs are liberated. Its a time for reflection and George resolves not to hold a grudge. Hes eventually taken to Keelung Harbour where he starts his journey home. He was away for 7 years. Thank you George for sharing your amazing story with us.
What a man. What a history. In his interview he talks about wanting to regale his kids with stories like his father told him. He could never have imagined the stories he would share…