The Royal Air Force Changi Association was formed in 1996 by Mike James, with the assistance of the late Jim Hart and Brian Lloyd. Mike had originally recognised that there was a need for an organisation that would bring together ex-service personnel, who had been lucky enough to have served some of their service lives at RAF Station Changi, on the island of Singapore. Hopefully this would enable some of them to be reunited with their “old” buddies and also to meet and reminisce with other like minded people, united by the fact that they had been there. Considering that at any one time there would have been in excess of three thousand service men and women stationed at Changi and that the camp was in existence for approximately twenty-six years, from 1946 to 1971, the number of eligible personnel was quite considerable, we only had to contact them, a task that we are still trying to achieve. At our best we have peaked at just over twelve hundred and fifty members, and currently (2011) we are running about one hundred lower. In latter years the membership qualification has been opened up to include the wives, husband, partners and children of service men and women, which has proved to be quite popular.
Contact with the members is through the” Changi-ite” newsletter, which is published and circulated to everyone, the cost of which is included in the annual subscription. A main reunion is held annually, on a week end at the beginning of May, which is usually held in the Birmingham/Coventry area, as this seems to suit most members. Locally sited mini-reunions are also arranged for the benefit of members who for personal reasons cannot get to the main event. In the past trips back to Singapore have received good support, which happened every other year, the last one being in 2008, since then, what with the world economic situation and the fact that we are all getting on in years, the number of interested people has not made it a viable proposition, but if more interest was forthcoming the trips could be re-introduced.