Hoping for a Return Visit to KURE

Kure City History Section received a letter from Wilf Aldridge from England. Wilf served in Kure as part of the British Commonwealth contingent of the U.N. Force during the 1950s. His letter says that his former comrades who had served in Kure had an inaugural dinner for the first time in 45 years. They are members of the recently formed 31 command Pay Office Kure Japan branch, Royal Army Pay Corps Old Boys Association. Wilf also says that arrangements are being completed for a return visit to Kure for members and their wives this autumn. They also invite all British soldiers who served in the area to join the tour. Attached to his letter was an article about their reunion meeting in the local newspaper. The following are its excerpts:


They came from all over the country for an emotional reunion in Norwich…. Meeting up for the first time in more than 45 years. The last time they met they were innocent young squaddies serving their country out in the Far East. Can you imagine the catching up they had to do? Fifteen members, many accompanied by their wives, turned up for their first dinner at the Oaklands Hotel, in Norwich, on 13 March. “Old photographs were pored over as memories of people and places were recalled. Memories of military service in the most distant posting of the British Army,” said member Wilf Aldridge, of Thorps St Andrew. 


#90 Parkway Vol.13 No.3 July-September 1999

                                  Together again for the first time in over 45 years

                                     – the Army boys who served in Kure, Japan, reunited in Nowrich 



呉市史編纂室のもとへイギリスのウィルフ・オールドリッジさんから手紙が届いた。ウィルフさんは1950年代、呉に駐留していた英国連邦軍兵である。 手紙には、元呉駐留兵士たちが45年ぶりの再会を果たしたとある。 これに先立ち結成された第31英陸軍給与隊呉支部OB会メンバーの集まりだ。 ウィルフさんは、今秋、メンバーとその家族の呉再訪の準備を進めており、 呉及び周辺地域に駐留した元英国兵士たちにツアー参加を呼び掛けている。 手紙には,親睦会を報じる地元新聞の記事も同封されていた。 以下はその抜粋。

感動的な再会のために全国からノリッジに集まって来た・・・ 45年ぶりの再会。前回会った時は、遠い極東での任務にあたる純朴な若い部隊兵だった。 近況報告に花が咲くのは想像に難くない。 3月13日、ノリッジのオークランドホテルでの第1回親睦会に、メンバー15人が集い、そのほとんどが夫人を伴っての参加だった。「古い写真を見ると、思い出がよみがえってくる。遠い英国軍駐留地での思い出が」とソープ・セント・アンドリューのウィルフ・オールドリッジさんは言う。