The Soldier's Details

First Name:
John Bremner
Nick Name:
Regimental #:
'C' Company, 10 Plaoon
Place of Birth:
Ross Shire, Scotland
Father's Name:
John Leith
Mothers's Name:
Jane Leith (nee Bremner)
Pre-war Occupation:
Selarang Camp Changi, Johore Bahru, Adam Park, Selarang Barracks Changi. Returned from Thailand to Sime Road Camp, Changi Gaol Camp (November 1944-August 1945)
'H' Force Thailand, Group No. 3
Camps Thailand:
Kanu II Malayan Hamlet, Kanchanaburi (evacuation with beri-beri on 10.9.1943)
Return Details 1945:
Singapore-Darwin-Sydney HMT Arawa, Sydney-Melbourne by troop train, Melbourne-Fremantle, HMT Strathmore.

General Description

 the inscriptioj readsLeith enlisted AIF 23 Jul 1940 and later joined 2/4th MGB’s ‘C’ Company, 10 Platoon under Commanding Officers Lt Wilson and Lt. Ambrose.  There were a few boys from Bunbury and Collie region in this Platoon.



Some of C Coy (mostly No 9 Pln) in transit Rear L-R Kev Moir, Clarrie Henderson, Fred Webb Front Taffy Jones, Cyril Anderson, Jock Leith, Chris Mc Lennan, Les Marriot, Ern Ricketts, Paddy Byrne. Kneeling Harry Norris


Read about ‘Jock;’ at Malayan Hamlet with Eric Watt and Alby Miller.

‘Eric Watt of ‘C’ Coy was hospitalised in Singapore at Changi with a very bad abscess.  Watt apparently had a lot of sickness up north, beri beri, malaria and dysentery. He speaks highly of Leith and Miller of ‘C’ Coy.  They did an amazing job for other machine gunners in looking after and washing them and also in scrounging food for them.  Stories such as this help to restore one’s faith in human nature.’ 
The above was an entry in Tom Buninng’s diary relating to H3 Group at Malayan Hamlet.  The fortunate Tom Bunning remained at Singapore throughout the war with Garden Party.
Leith was selected to work on Burma-Thai Railway with ‘H’ Force Thailand.  Please read further




John was born 2 Sept 1901 Ross Shire, Scotland to John Leith and Jane Bremner.
Leith had first migrated to Australia from Scotland in August 1925 on ‘Borda’ from London, he was 21 years old.
Records show he was residing in Victoria in 1927 at Koo Wee Rup, where he worked as a labourer for Mr Gouldie, Heath Hill. Koo Wee Rup is about 26km SE of Melbourne.


Below:  the below items suggest Jock Leith was connected to a Group Settlement Scheme – we have been unable to find any further records to confirm this.


Below:  Jock plays role of Best Man at a local wedding.

Jock Allen’s father died in 1936.



For the 1949, 1954 and 1958  Electoral Rolls Jock is farming at Greenbushes.
(There is a John Leith recorded farming at Kellerberrin in the 1939 Electoral Roll – however we cannot confirm it is Jock).
(It is also possible Jock returned to Scotland – there are shipping records to Australia in 1938 – however the name recorded is John Leith without ‘Bremner’ so we cannot confirm.)



Jock Leith was farming at Greenbushes when he died 6 March 1958 aged 57 years.  He was buried at Karrakatta Cemetery, the Grantee was Leslie Gordon Streatfield – Streatfield’s family lived in Collie which may suggest Jock  may have worked in this area sometime before moving to Greenbushes.

Below:  The Streatfield family.




Jock’s father John Leith dies 24 Aug 1959 aged 84 years after his eldest son died in 1958.  Jock’s mother Jane Bremner died 3 May 1962 aged 84 years,
The above headstone is at Rosskeen Churchyard, Rosskeen, Highland, Scotland.  The Rosskeen Church and Cemetery are today in the care of  Highland Buildings Preservation Trust.  The cemetery continues to be used, however the Church is in disrepair and has been boarded up for many years.
The Leith family then included three sons, John Bremner. James Leith who died 28 Oct 1975 and David Leith who died 26 Mar 1990.  (their places of death are unknown)
Below:  Found at Rosskeen Cemetery the headstone for James Leith’s wife.  Impossible for us to read cemetery records records tell us the inscription reads:
Loving memory of
Beloved wife of
Died 13th September 1950
Aged 71 years



Located off the B817 at Rosskeen Free Church, Roskeen churchyard surrounds a disused presbyterian church built in 1830-32 by James Smith on the site of an earlier chapel, with a newer cemetery extension. Although the church is boarded up, the cemetery is still in use.


Camp Locations:

  • Changi Gaol Camp - Singapore
  • Johore Bahru, - Malaysia
  • Selarang Barracks Changi - Singapore
  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Sime Road Camp - Singapore
  • Kanchanaburi, 50k - Thailand
  • Malay Hamlet 153.00km - Thailand