Grim, gripping and absolutely true...

Roy Yates - 2001 picture

The Forgotten Army by Roy Yates

   Roy was just a young man working for a railway company in Stafford when World War Two broke out. Like many others of his age he volunteered to join the army as soon as he could. Little did he realise what an awful experience was to befall him.
   It was Roy's bad luck to arrive in Singapore just before the ignominious surrender to the Japanese. He was one of many thousands taken to work on the 'Death Railway' from Bangkok in Thailand (known as Siam then) to Moulmein in Burma, including the much publicised 'Kwai' bridge.
   The forced labour, malnutrition and disease, the suffering, torture and death inflicted at the hands of incredibly cruel captors is all described accurately and in surprisingly matter-of-fact language by Roy. However, beneath that there is a tale of anguish: while he had the strength, luck and guile to survive, many of Roy's friends never made it home.
   If you are of later generations who never lived through such a time, or even if you do remember this black episode in human history, The Forgotten Army is a humbling book to read: it makes economic recession and local politics seem so utterly trivial by comparison.
   Illustrated with many photographs, both comtemporary and new, plus a map of the Hell Camps, and written in a clear readable style, this is an absorbing, authoritative, but at times very grim read.  Highly recommended.

"...a stunning, riveting account..."

* In late in February of 2012 we heard the very sad news of Roy's death. A strong, active man in early life, his last years were not so happy: his wife died, he lost his sight and with that a hobby he very much enjoyed: photography. He leaves a daughter and grandchildren; a good man leaves us. Rest in peace Roy.

  • The Forgotten Army in print has sold out, sorry. The GOOD NEWS is Infinity Junction has released a new 2016 second edition, dedicated to the memory of Roy Yates and the companion soldiers who never returned with him from the Far East. This has the old mistakes corrected, has a brand new map, and some of the old rather poor photograph scans replaced. It is not economical to print this, so we have made it available as a digital file in .pdf format. The advantages are that we no longer need to charge postage as it will be sent as an e-mail attachment. Also the price is much lower than before representing the time and effort to reconstruct this grim piece of modern history only. At only UK £4 this is cheaper than most digital books. Please e-mail us for details of how to purchase. Note- you will need an inbox with at least 2·5 Megs of spare room and no block on attachments.
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    ISBN 1-904101-00-3
    published by Infinity Junction