The Diary of Shirley Joice
Escape from Perak & Evacuation to Sydney
In September 1941 Shirley married Australian mining engineer, John Bernard 'Jack' Joice of Anglo-Oriental Co.Ltd, Malim Nawar, Perak. Their peaceful life was shattered by the Japanese invasion of Malaya in December 1941. Shirley was evacuated first to Kuala Lumpur then Singapore where just before Christmas they boarded the Cremer to Batavia then the van Heutz to Sydney where they arrived on January 26th 1942. Jack and his elder brother Jim served in the Perak Volunteers during the Malayan campaign and were in an FMSVF escape party that left Singapore on the Celia on February 14th 1942. They reached Batavia and boarded the SS Dumeyer van Twist to Tjilitjap, eventually reaching Fremantle on the Zaandam on March 7th 1942. Both brothers returned to Malaya aboard the King GeorgeV Class Battleship HMS Duke of York in December 1945 in order to help rebuild the tin mining industry in Malaya.
Thanks to Shirley and her son David for permission to reproduce the original diary on our website.
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