Diary 1

In the RAF, my father, Bill Belton, was known as Taff. He joined 62 Squadron as an armourer and went to Singapore. After the fall of Singapore he contracted rheumatic fever and was ill for several months, eventually convalescing in a mountain hospital in India after escaping from Burma on the Kota Gede. Here is one record of his time in 62 Squadron.

1941 Feb 3rd Joined up at West Kirby
1941 Feb 10th  Left for Melksham. Drill and army training
1941 June 9th Posted to RAF Penrhos North Wales
1941 July 18th Back at West Kirby for overseas posting
1941 July 28th Board the ship “Sterling Castle”
1941 July 29th Joined a convoy of about 40 ships and sailed around the coast of Ireland
1941 August 18th Arrived in Freetown
1941 August 21st Left Freetown and get malaria and into hospital on ship
1941 August 24th Land in Capetown
1941 August 28th  Leave Capetown. Only two ships now, Sterling Castle and a cruiser. All other ships have gone to middle east
1941 September 8th Dock at Bombay. Half day ashore. Stayed 2 days
1941 September 16th Dock at Ceylon. Stayed 2 days
1941 September 28th Arrived Singapore
1941 September 2nd Alor Star 62 squadron RAF, Singapore
1941 September 9th Japs start war. 62 squadron go bombing
1941 December 10th Arrive in Butterworth
1941 December 11th Arrive in Taiping
1941 December 16th Arrive in Ipohol. Camp empty
1941 December 17th Arrive in Kuala Lumpa
1941 December 18th Arrive in Singapore
1941 December 19th Clothing parade
1941 December 23rd Moved to Tanger taking over 60 squadron, me Jock and sergeant
1941 December 25th Christmas dinner. Japs still bombing
1942 January 23rd All our a/c (aircraft) are lost in Jap raids. 12 new Hudsons arrive from England. Japs also arrive leaving only 2 Hudsons repairable. I leave in one and Doug leaves in the other for Palenbang in Sumatra early next morning
1942 January 24th Land at Palenbang, Sumatra (Dutch island) 
1942 February 14th Japs land at nearby aerodrome. Late afternoon, after destroying all bomb parts and everything else, we moved off to Java, landing in Chilliliton, near Botavia
1942 February 15th Singapore fell. Our aircraft took off to Bandeong
1942 February 17th Left Bandeong by train for Buitengorg
1942 February 26th Left Buitengorg. Arrived at Chillijap by train for the good ship “Kota Gede” 

Kota Gede

1942 March 8th Arrive at Colombo after 10 days at sea. Big birthday party for Doug and Bill
1942 March 9th Went on the troop ship Dunera
1942 March 17th Called at Bombay for 2 days
1942 March 21st Arrived in Karachi. Sand desert
1942 April 23rd Left by troop train for a 5 day and night journey to Chakulia, near Calcutta
1942 April 28th Arrived at Chakulia
1942 May 3rd Left Chakulia with advance party for Charbartia, near Cuttack. 120 degrees F in the shade
1942 September 17th Left Chabartie for hill station
1942 September 18th Arrive in Calcutta, 2 days leave
1942 September 23rd Arrive in Dera Dun at the foot of the Himalayas
1942 September 24th In Chakrata for 14 days leave
1943 June 2nd I had extended leave caused by having rheumatic fever, eight and  a half months. I had my Christmas and birthday and also plenty of snow
1943 June 2nd Left to join 62 squadron at Chaklala
1943 June 5th Arrive at Chaklala
1943 June 7th In hospital Rawalpindi. Rheumatic
1943 June 8th Left Rawalpindi for Peshawar and that is the end of 62 squadron for me and a lot of good friends
1943 June 8th Arrived in Pershawar
1943 December 25th Christmas in Pershawar
1944 April 10th  Left Pershawar for Bombay
1944 April 11th Arrive in Bombay
1944 May 8th Boarded the ship named Otranto for England
1944 May 4th Left Bombay for the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden and Red Sea
1944 May 12th Started up the Suez Canal
1944 May 13th Anchored mid-Suez
1944 May 14th Port Said. Took on a load of Italian prisoners
1944 May 15th Enter the Mediterranean Sea
1944 May 20th Look at Gibraltar
1944 May 30th Liverpool
1944 May 31st Arrive in West Kirby
1944 June 3rd Everyone goes home on leave except me. I go to Insworth Hospital in Gloucester for tests
1944 June 6th D Day
1944 June 14th Home at last. 
1944 July (date not know) Home leave ends. Sent to Morecombe to wait posting
1944 July  (date not known) Posted to Hawarden near Chester
1944 December  Went to Weeton, near Blackpool. Two weeks arm refr
1945 March Posted to Chilbolton, near Andover. Took over from Yanks
1945 September Posted to Saffron Walden, Cambridge. Took over from Yanks
1945 October Posted to Bradwell Bay, Essex
1945 Christmas Posted to West Malling, Kent
1946 March  Posted to Spilsby, Lincolnshire
1946 May Posted to Cardington for demob
1946 May 7th demobbed