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The Battle Box, Singapore

The Battle Box - www.joyofmuseums.com - exterior

The Battle Box, Singapore

The Battle Box is the underground command center constructed under Fort Canning, Singapore, as an emergency, bomb-proof command center. It was used extensively during the Malayan Campaign and the Battle of Singapore during World War II.

The Battle Box is the popular name of the Fort Canning Bunker, formerly known as Headquarters Malaya Command Operations Bunker. 

By the latter stages of the battle for Singapore, the Japanese were bombing the Central Area of Singapore. Lieutenant-General Percival shifting the Combined Operations Headquarters to Fort Canning Bunker in February 1942.

Fort Canning Hill was also within range of the Japanese artillery, forcing military personnel into the bunker. There were around 500 officers and men in the bunker in the latter stages of the battle.

The decision to surrender Singapore was made by Lieutenant-General Percival in a meeting, held in the ‘Commander, Anti-Aircraft Defence Room’ of the bunker.

The Fort Canning Bunker was later occupied by Japanese forces during the Japanese Occupation of Singapore and used for communications right up to the time of the Japanese surrender.

At the conclusion of the Second World War, the bunker complex was looted in the aftermath of the Japanese surrender. 

After the war, Fort Canning Hill was again used by the British as the Singapore Base District Headquarters. The British handed over Fort Canning to the Singapore Armed Forces in 1968, and the above-ground buildings of Fort Canning Hill served for a time as the Singapore Command and Staff College.

The Fort Canning Bunker had remained empty and unused since World War II and was sealed off and its exact location was forgotten.

It was “rediscovered” and developed into a museum depicting the final days of the Battle of Singapore. 

The Battle Box, Singapore

  • Name:              The Battle Box
  • City:                   Singapore
  • Type:                 War Museum
  • Location:          2 Cox Terrace, Singapore

The Battle Box, Singapore Map

The Battle Box, Singapore

The Battlebox

A Virtual Tour of Museums in Singapore

History of the Battle of Singapore – The Battlebox

FORT CANNING – THE BATTLE BOX (SINGAPORE)

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“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.”
– Sun Tzu

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Photo Credit: JOM

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