The Battle of Pasir Panjang Commemorative Walk
Sun 11 Feb 2018: 7.00am – 12.00pm
With the NUS Toddycats, volunteers of the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum, National University of Singapore
All are welcome, just register at Eventbrite.
On 13th February 1942 the Japanese Imperial Army has stormed through Malaya and invaded Singapore. Approaching Singapore City from the west, a seasoned Japanese army is forced to engage the small force of the Malay Regiment fending them off from the high ground of Pasir Panjang Ridge.
A fierce battle is put up by men of the Malay Regiment amidst the confusion of aerial and artillery bombardment, a dark sky smothered by fumes of a burning fuel dump, loss of communications and the early deaths of senior officers who had moved about to keep their men coordinated.
They would battle on for nearly two days and are wiped out almost to the last man on the eve of Chinese New Year.
On 15th of February, 1942, General Percival marches down Bukit Timah Road to surrender to General Yamashita of the Japanese Imperial Army at the Ford Factory.
The accounts of the desperate and heroic Battle of Pasir Panjang left a strong impression on the Pasir Panjang Heritage Guides, so we commemorate the Malay Regiment’s defense of the ridge every year.
The National University of Singapore is built on part of the old battleground and its forest still contains a 1936 British military outpost which strategically oversees Jurong, Bukit Timah and Singapore City. In 1954, the Pasir Panjang Ridge was renamed ‘Kent Ridge,’ and the old stone marker which commemorates this event persists to this day, often overlooked, at the Gap.
Guides will share with the public stories about the battle, the geography, history and the flora and fauna of the area which drew us to explore the ridge decades ago and to gradually learn of its history.
Our commemorative route takes us from the National University of Singapore to Kent Ridge Road and through the Gap to Kent Ridge Park and ends at Reflections of Bukit Chandu.
Everyone is welcome – just register at Eventbrite.
You will have to wake up early enough to join us at 7.00am at the University Cultural Centre [map] and be physically fit enough to walk 5km at a moderate pace with some stairs!
This is a five hour walk and February is a hot month, so please bring at least a litre of water and some sandwiches or snacks. Rain is always possible so do bring an umbrella and waterproofing for your barang-barang!
- Pasir Panjang/Kent Ridge Heritage webpage [link] and Facebook page [link]
- “Battle of Pasir Panjang Commemorative Walk 2009 Review,” by Kenneth Pinto. Raffles Museum Toddycats, 19 Feb 2009. [link]
- Photos from 2015, 2012, 2011, 2010 and 2008.
Click the map for a larger view or see Google Maps