Hintok Valley Camp, 154.00km - Thailand
HINTOK VALLEY CAMP June to July 1943
Thi camp was situated in the worst possible position between Hintok Road Camp and the base of a limestone cliff. The ground on which Hintok Valley Camp was sited was a swamp. A stream ran past Hintok Road Camp and then doubled back on itself in a U shape, flowing back in the opposite direction past Hintok Valley Camp.
To get to the lower reaches of the railway trace where excavation and construction was being carried it was necessary for the men to climb a ladder and follow a steep track down the escarpment.
The intended path for the railway was between Hintok Road and Valley Camps and the River Kwae Noi.
The camp was to be the new home of HI Group which was the first party from ‘H’ Force to arrive. These POWs were also the first from ‘H’ Force to work on what appears to have been the Three Tier Bridge and the Hintok Cutting.
From the end of June to early July 1943 H5 Group arrived at Hintok River Camp and subsequently moved up the escarpment along the slippery track to Hintok Valley Camp where they joined the officers from H6 Group.
The close proximity of Tamils who were also accommodated at Hintok Valley Camps greatly concerned the POWs from ‘D’ Force O and P Battalions who were located across the road at nearby Hintok Road Camp.
For these men to get to some of the lower work sites along the Hintok section of the rail link it was required they walk along a muddy track which ran through the middle of Hintok Valley Camp.
The men from Groups H1, H5 and H6 the majority being British suffered terribly as tropical diseases and sickness brought a high death toll. In total 141 British and 3 Australian POWs died at Hintok Valley Camp.
Accommodation consisted of 15 tents of which 11 were only outer fly sheets and the remaining 4 were inner fly sheets.
There was an attempt to erect a hospital – little more than 4 uprights with an atap palm leaf roof which was unable to protect the sick from the rain.