A collection of banners from the British Commonwealth Occupation Force (Japan) Association of Australia will go on public display for the first time in more than 70 years.
The BCOF was a caretaker group in Japan who helped manage the population from 1945 to 1952.
National president and former private Kevin Cordell said the group decided to disband because their membership was getting too old.
“There was 17,000 of us now there's about 300,” Mr Cordell said. “We used to go to reunions twice a year but we have got too old now, so we decided to finish up.
“Each one of was going to take a banner home but the secretary arranged for them to come to Bendigo’s military museum.”
Mr Cordell said the display would be a chance for people to learn about the forgotten role the Occupational Force had in WWII.
“No one knows what we've done. You go to Anzac meetings and they mention from the Boer War right up to Iraq but we're a bit forgotten,” he said.
“(Touring Japan and Hiroshima) was shocking. We went over to destroy their ammunition and repatriate some of them, which they didn't like.”
Mr Cordell, who lives in White Hills, said the Bendigo institute was an ideal home for the group’s legacy.
“This is the greatest thing that has happened to me since I come home from Japan,” he said.
“I had my banner rolled and ready to take home but now it's all coming to Bendigo. There's not a better place in Australia for it.”
Bendigo District RSL vice president Cliff Richards said the decision for the BCOF to disband and see their legacy secured was a good way to finish up.
“It is sad but it is also extremely important that, as these people get older, they can make that decision to wind up,” he said.
“In doing that they can decide how they want to see their association recognised. They're still sprightly enough to do that. It's extremely important it doesn’t get packed away or lost.
“It’s important for us to see this collection in a museum so we can look after it and see it here for 100 years to come.”
Have you signed up to the Bendigo Advertiser's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in central Victoria.