During the Japanese occupation of Singapore in 1942, Allied prisoners of war constructed a chapel at the infamous Changi Prison. In 1988, the city built a replica of the chapel next to the prison and opened a museum dedicated to Singapore’s role during the Second World War and the events that took place in on the island. Visitors to the Changi Museum can see moving photographs and paintings of the city under occupation, personal items from prisoners of war and a full-size replica of the chapel.
Take a guided audio tour through the chapel and museum and hear former prisoners of war recount stories of the torture, murder and starvation in the prison. While some graphic images accompany the exhibition, the violence is not gratuitous and the images are necessary to the story.
See detailed maps that depict the advancements made by Japanese soldiers. Battlefields are marked and depicted in paintings throughout the museum. Visit the murals painted by former British prisoner of war, Stanley Warren, on the walls of the chapel. Another mural is displayed near the entrance and is entitled Two Malarias with a Cholera. It depicts the experience of the artist Ray Parkin during his time working on the infamous Death Railway.
While the museum will be of particular interest to those with an interest in history and the events of the Second World War, it is a powerful experience for all.
Once a week the museum runs two extended tours: the Changi WWII & Battlefield Tour and the Changi Museum War Trails tour. Both tours are by bus and offer more detailed insights into the events and battles in Singapore during the Second World War.
The Changi Museum is located in eastern Singapore and can be reached by car or public transportation. There is limited parking in the area. The Changi Museum is open daily and admission is free; however, audio tours are subject to a fee.