The Soldier's Details

First Name:
Nick Name:
Lance Corporal
Regimental #:
Company Headquarters
Place of Birth:
Ogmore Vale, Glenmorgan, South Wales
Father's Name:
William John Matthews
Mothers's Name:
Gwenllian Matthews
Pre-war Occupation:
Selarang Camp Changi, Mount Pleasant Camp, River Valley Road, Camp, Selarang Barracks Changi
'D' Force Thailand, S Battalion
Camps Thailand:
Kanu II, Hintok Road Camp, Hintok River Camp, Kinsaiyok, Konkoita, Tamarkan,Chungkai, Tamuang, Petchaburi, Kachu Mountain Camp, Ratburi, Nakom Nayok, Lopburi, Bangkok.
Camps Java:
Lopburi, Bangkok (see Danny Bevis Diary)
3/8658, 8815
Return Details 1945:
Thailand-Singapore by aircraft, Singapore-Fremantle, HMT Moreton Bay.

General Description


Roy enlisted at Claremont with AIF 30 July 1940, aged 20 years.  He later joined 2/4th MGB’s Company Headquarters as a clerk, becoming Lance Corporal under Commanding Officer Capt. O.S. McEwin.
Company HQ was made up of Capt McEwin (KIA Hill 200 12 Feb 1942)
Coy Sgt Major WO James Unsworth, Coy Quartermaster (acted as WO 1 at Changi) Left Singapore with ‘A’ Force Burma, Green Force RTA
S/Sgt Harry Hammer  promoted 9 Feb 1942 – (replaced WO II Vivian Albert Keay – Transferred ‘E’ Coy SRB, left Singapore with  “B’ Force Borneo,  died Sandakan 10 May1945) Hammer left Singapore with ‘A’ Force Burma Green Force.  RTA.

Three Privates below:

Roy Matthews, Clerk L/Cpl Coy HQ. Departed Singapore with ‘D’ Force Thailand, S Battalion to work on railway at Hellfire Pass Cutting.  Recovered from Thailand at end of war.
Leonard Oswald Peat, Coy HQ Batman/Runner (KIA Ulu Pandan, Reformatory Road 12 Feb 1942)
Joseph Servier, Driver, ‘E’ Force Borneo, murdered Sandakan-Ranau Track, 7 June1945.
Roy Matthews, Harry Hammer and Jim Unsworth were the only survivors.

Roy was discharged from the Army on 8 April 1946.


Back: L-R Clarrie McDonald, Joe Pearce, George Neville, R. Anderson, ?, Ralph Williams, ? Front: L-R Clive (Potty) White, Charles Fielder, Jim Basel, Reg Stewart, Roy Matthews, Pommie Para, Sid Webb, N. Simmonds
Nakom Nayok     Back: L-R Clarrie McDonald, Joe Pearce, George Neville, R. Anderson, ?, Ralph Williams, ?
Front: L-R Clive (Potty) White, Charles Fielder, Jim Basell, Reg Stewart, Roy Matthews, Pommie Para, Sid Webb, N. Simmonds


Roy was eldest son born to William John and Gwenllian Matthews Ogmore Vale, Glenmorgan, Wales in 1920.  His younger brother Merfwyn was born 6 years later.  The two boys with their mother are listed on the Passenger Ship ‘Bendigo’ which sailed from London to Fremantle July 1929.  Their address was recorded as Glenview, Lewistown, Ogmore Vale, Glamorgan.  Ogmore Vale was a goal mining town.
It is possible William John Matthews had earlier sailed to WA. We believe the family resided at some time in the Kalgoorlie region.
Roy Matthews recorded his father William as his NOK on his enlistment details.  The address recorded as 27 Kathleen Street Bayswater.  His brother Mervyn was included in a newspaper item regarding the Scout Group Bassendean in 1938.
There are records his mother Gwenllian Matthews died 30 Dec 1983 aged 91 years at Kalgoorlie.


After the war Roy married about 1948 to Sarah Eliza Alice Greene (nee Atwil) who went by the name of Alice.
I have been able to track them throughout the years via Electoral Rolls:
1949 Roy and Alice, Grosvenor Road, North Perth.
1954 Roy and Alice 9 Lawley Street, North Beach.  Wagon Builder
1963 Roy and Alice 8 Sussex Street, Victoria Park, Car Builder

1977 Roy & Alice, Carlisle, Car Builder.

1980 Roy and Sarah Eliza Alice, Carlisle, Wagon Builder.


Records show Alice Matthews died 27 Aug 1993 aged 80 years at Mandurah.  Her ashes were scattered to the winds at Fremantle Cemetery.
Roy remarried to Janina.
Roy passed away 19 Jan 2018.
Roy resided in Mandurah for many years, in fact his block of land backed onto Wally Holdings.  We hear the two former POWs would exchange news and updates of their former battalion over the fence.

Camp Locations:

  • Mount Pleasant Camp - Singapore
  • River Valley Road Camp - Singapore
  • Selarang Barracks Changi - Singapore
  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Chungkai, 60k - Thailand
  • Hintok, 154k - Thailand
  • Hintok River Camp, 158k - Thailand
  • Kanu II, 152.30k - Thailand
  • Kinsaiyok Main, 170.2k - Thailand
  • Lopburi - Thailand
  • Nakom Nayok, Nakhon Nayok - Thailand
  • Petchaburi - Thailand
  • Ratburi, Ratchaburi- Thailand
  • Tamarkan, Tha Makham 56k - Thailand
  • Tamuang, Tha Muang 39k - Thailand
  • Kachau Mountain Camp - Thailand