This blog will record, in real time exactly 100 years later, the correspondence between Miss Emma Ash and Mr William Metcalfe during the First World War. From bundles of letters found under floorboards long after their deaths, we are able to witness the development of the later stages of the War through the eyes of a serviceman and his sweetheart, played out alongside a growing romance.
With no consideration of literary prowess, no thought that this correspondence would be seen by others (except perhaps the military censor), an unvarnished portrait of a different age and world appears.
The letters run from May 1917 to mid-1919, and will appear here in the order they were written, a century later.
The last letters I received from you were from Ilfracombe but I have not been able to answer them. I will write you a letter as soon as poss. Please remember me to your Ma & Pa and also the boys.
Best Love from
Another few lines to let you know that I am still alive and kicking. I haven’t heard from you for four days now, what has happened? Of course by now you will be thinking of returning home and to work, well once more I say I hope you have thoroughly enjoyed yourself also Mabel. I expected to hear from Mable while she was away but no! Dad seems to be the only one who writes to me from home. I am feeding myself on Lyles syrup and condensed milk. Oh! we do have a time. I have written home for my cornet I would like to get a bit of an orchestra up if poss but I don’t know how many instruments we can get yet. Well Emmie dear I will close now hoping to hear from you this afternoon with
From Will xx