The Kohima Educational Trust is delighted to host a talk by Terence O'Halloran, Curator of 31 Squadron RAF Association who discusses the role played by Royal Air Force squadrons both before and during the Battle of Kohima in 1944.
We will hear how, through their determined commitment, and through flight, they managed to supply the troops on the ground with the means to fight, the means to eat, the means to fix the casualties and most of all the means to deliver support and encouragement to a wounded force.
Kohima was one of the most important battles of the Far East Campaign during the Second World War - this is the story of the Air Force personnel, support regiments and civilians who enabled succour and hope to be brought to the troops on the ground during the battle.
The recording of the talk is now available below:
Terence O'Halloran, Curator at 31 Squadron RAF Association. Terence joined the Royal Air Force at the tender age of 15 in January 1960. His association with 31 Squadron commenced early 1966 until October 1968 serving on Canberra PR7 aircraft at RAF Laarbruch in Germany. Terry joined 31 Sqn RAF Association in 1971 at a point where he was leaving the Royal Air Force (engineering metal) to a career in the financial services profession engineering money. It was not long before he came deputy curator for the Association alongside Arthur Watts who had served as a Corporal fitter in Burma and Java. They worked well together. Terence learnt a lot. The history of the war-time period in North-East India has become something of a passion. That passion led him to create a historic exhibition in three 30 foot containers that now reside in the museum at RAF Laarbruch as a testament to the bravery of the air and ground crew veterans of those interesting times 1941 to 1946. Kohima is a brief yet awe inspiring part of that historical experience.
Sylvia May - CEO of The Kohima Educational Trust Sylvia May was born in New Jersey, USA in 1957. Her parents moved to England in 1963. Educated at High Wycombe School for Girls, she decided to pursue a career in the world of books. Sylvia worked for HarperCollins for 37 years, the last eleven of which she headed up their UK-based International Sales team. Sylvia May is the daughter of the late Gordon Graham, Founder and President of the Kohima Educational Trust. She is proud that her father has inspired many people to share his vision to commemorate those who fought and died in Kohima, and the wonderful Naga people who have done so much for the British in the past. She first visited India in 1994 with her husband Robert, and has returned on numerous occasions, staying in Kohima several times. In 2000, they followed the WWII route of the Queens Own Cameron Highlanders, her father’s regiment. The regiment’s first main engagement in this theatre of war was at Zubza shortly before the Battle of Kohima.