Built at the foothills of Mount Kinabalu, the Kundasang War Memorial Park commemorates the Prisoners of War from Australia and Britain
Built at the foothills of Mount Kinabalu, the Kundasang War Memorial Park commemorates the Prisoners of War from Australia and Britain, along with the locals who attempted to help them, who died during World War II at the hands of the Japanese. New Zealand World War II veteran, Major Toby Carter, a local Borneo resident who worked for Shell Oil, initiated the concept of the park in the 1950s. After many years of fundraising and contributions from the British and Australian government's, the memorial was completed in 1962. Comprising of four distinct garden areas, the memorial park was unable to be maintained due to inadequate funding and by 2003 had fallen into complete disarray.
In response to the collapsing memorial, local resident Sevee Charuruks began the restoration process of the site, inserting his own funds and manpower into the project. As of today, visitors can walk through the repaired and well-maintained gardens and pay their respects to those memorialised there.
At the entrance to the park, a short video explains the significance of the gardens and provides a history of the death marches that occurred in the area during World War II. Next is the Borneo Garden, a memorial to the local ethnic groups of Sabah who helped the POWs during their imprisonment. Throughout the entire park interpretation panels showcase photographs, diary entries and newspaper clippings that tell the story of the Allied prisoners of Sabah.