The Fall of Singapore in 1942 was a significant chapter in the nation’s history. Despite the many decades that have passed, the tales of tenacity and resilience displayed by the nation’s war heroes during that tumultuous period remain important and relatable today.
From 20 February to 14 March 2021, members of the public can revisit Singapore’s wartime history and stories through the National Heritage Board’s (NHB) Battle for Singapore programme, which features a series of specially curated tours and programmes.
The diverse programme line-up will consist of a total of more than 40 tour runs and programme sessions offered by NHB and its partners. Some of the highlights of this year’s Battle for Singapore include:
Fort Siloso Rediscovery Tour (NEW)
Participants will explore the grounds of Fort Siloso with history experts who will take them on a journey to learn more about the role of the fort in Singapore’s maritime past.
The highlight of this special access tour will be visits to exclusive areas, including the Siloso Pier, coastal mine defense casement, and the Coastal Search Light stations. These areas tell a more complex history of Fort Siloso and will show that a familiar place like Fort Siloso still has many other stories to tell.
A $5 token charge applies for this tour.
Mini Tour: Former Ford Factory – Singapore Discovery Centre (NEW)
At the Former Ford Factory, participants can learn more about the Japanese Occupation through archival records and artefacts on display, and also use an interactive mobile app to enhance their experiences.
Participants will then visit the newlyrevamped galleries at the Singapore Discovery Centre, which provide insights into life during the Occupation through enhanced technology such as AR, as well as stories of resilience and courage during the war.
Mini Tour: Eurasian Heritage Gallery – National Gallery Singapore (NEW)
At the Eurasian Heritage Gallery, participants will discover how the Eurasian community suffered during WWII under the Japanese Occupation and how several Eurasian war heroes emerged from the trials and tribulations.
At National Gallery Singapore, participants will journey across specific sites around the Gallery’s City Hall Wing such as the City Hall Steps and City Hall Chamber to explore different perspectives of how WWII was experienced in Singapore.
Kwong Wai Shiu Hospital Heritage Gallery Tour (NEW)
Learn about WWII through the lens of Kwong Wai Shiu Free Hospital, a charitable healthcare facility founded by a group of Cantonese businessmen in 1910. Uncover more about the hospital’s WWII history through a guided tour of the gallery and an informative sharing session by Mr Lee Kok Leong, curator of the Kwong Wai Shiu Hospital Heritage Gallery.
This tour is conducted in Mandarin.
WWII Changi Point Walking Tour (NEW)
Join Jerome Lim of The Long and Winding Road on a walk around Changi Point and its boardwalk to uncover its history through its sports and recreational facilities, geographical features, facilities and some surprising remnants of the past, and to examine the roles that some of them may have played during the Second World War.
Webinar: The Comfort Women of Singapore in History and Memory by Assoc. Prof. Kevin Blackburn
This talk uncovers the missing voices of the comfort women of Japanese-occupied Singapore during the Second World War and explains why Singapore comfort women have not come forward with their testimonies as comfort women in other societies in Asia have done since the 1990s.
Members of the public may visit here for more information and to sign up for Battle for Singapore 2021 programmes.
Registration commences 16 February 2021 (12 PM) and slots on the programmes will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.