16 Tiber St
Dear Will

In answer to yours, I do not want to appear selfish, but I am really pleased it was raining in Aldershot or I should have been wild if it had been fine after all and I had stayed at home. Mr Hickin preached on Sunday evening and also explained the reason fully of his resignation. I am afraid we have misjudged him and he thought we had too, but on hearing the story from his own lips, I think the congregation is fully satisfied and agrees the course he has chosen to be correct and best.  There has been a burglary at his house, that is what brought him to London chiefly this week end. £50-worth of jewellery and other things stolen, I am told, but no clue whatever can be obtained as to who the thief is. I met Mr Hickin on Sat. and he asked me how you were. Mr Warder told me last evening he would write to you at the first opportunity in a week or two’s time he thought, he is a very busy person I suppose. Would you mind if I answered yours about a week after I wonder? I went for a nice walk Saturday evening with Maude. The war pictures are commencing again this Winter as in previous years, you will not be coming with me this time will you?

Mr Clarke came to the office this morning, he spent the week end in town (to be near his lady love I expect) and he went back to Bournemouth again this morning. He sent Mable and me a card last week and addressed me as “Dear M.” and Mabel as “Dear Alice”, now what do you think of the cheeky bounder. Why are you wanting those pieces of music and how are the concert practices proceeding. I believe I have asked you this before among the other countless questions you have not answered. The sun is shining nicely to-day, I am going to the Mish. this evening to play for Mr Chapman, the harvest anthem etc, we are having a practice. Things are looking up a little now the winter’s work is beginning to show itself. I hear Mrs Browne is going to get a concert together by the G.F.s and we are to entertain some wounded soldiers, there will be “some fun” that night you can guess. Do you remember Bert Pillar, he lived in our street, but has since gone to live in Devon, he attended the mission. Well he came to London on Sunday and called at our house. My word he is tall, he is in wounded soldier’s clothes but has grown wonderful. I went swimming on Friday (Mabel would not come) I got on alright too, I shall do a little next week by myself I think. I do not know what G. Ray is in, he was down again on Sunday, some of them seem to manage it all right. Mr Shovel’s boy next door has joined and he gets home every Sunday. You asked me in one letter if I posted the card to you directly after the all clear signal as you received it so soon. Well I hardly imagine myself writing at 2.30am and posting it that time of the morning especially after the excitement, but I wrote it as soon as I was dressed and then sent it at 7.30 so you see I was not so very late. Have you got the instep supports yet? You were not really sick were you. Bertie Cranmer has been to France some time, and also in the hospital some time with trench feet, Charlie Cranmer came home soon after him, so it was rather nice, all the boys seem to be coming now. We are expecting Jack Strong soon. What do you do when you go to the Officers’ mess? I know you get a free supper, or a tea. I am going to start Evening School next I think. I do not know what subjects to take yet. By the way, you complained some time back about the paper I left unused. You do not fill much I must say, besides you do not get many words on one line either. I would give you a prize if you could write me as much as I have you this time.

I think it is about time I drew to a close or you will begin to puff. Another thing, I have had some various selections of notepaper from you, but this dark grey blue stuff fairly makes me creep it is so drab and dreary, cut it off for a time there’s a dear boy. I am going to Lennis now to spend the rest of the evening. That chapie in my office in Mr Clarke’s place is a little more talkative now, his name is Mr Carroll, only I wish he would someetimes, but he made a joke the other day much to my amazement and then laughed and of course I heartily joined in on the rare occasion. Thank goodness this is the last week of his presence in the D.M.O. Well I really will close this time

With love from


Semper fidelis

(there were quite 4 words on each line to your last most welcome letter, I’ll pay you out my boy next time you see.


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