Last Post

April 13, 1941

April 1st – Farnborough (Tue)

Quite heavy wet snow prevented 4 days scheme of 2 Div[ision]. Contacted L[?]‘s by phone re Grannie.

April 2nd – Farnborough (Wed)

Almond blossom trees out in pretty pink blooms. Great naval victory in Mediterranean.

April 3rd – Farnborough (Thu)

Downes notified by C[anadian] M[ilitary] H[ead] Q[uarters] that I am to go on 2 weeks O[?] O[?] course at Bordon & that I would not return to 2 C[ana]d[ia]n Div[ision. Made greeting record which will be sent to Canada & heard in about 2 weeks.

April 4th – Farnborough (Fri)

Received sweater from Renie & 2 air mail letters – 161 & 163.

April 5th – Farnborough (Sat)

Congratulated upon work in 2 C[ana]d[ia]n Div[ision] by L[ieutenan]t Col[onel] Weeks, A[ssistant] A[djutant] & Q[uarter] M[aster] G[eneral]. I was to see Gen[eral] to be thanked re same by he did not reurn to H[ead] Q[uarters] in time. Gave 15/- to boys in Ord[nance] Office 2 C[ana]d[ia]n Div[ision] drinks.

April 6th – Bordon (Sun)

Went to No 1 G[eneral] H[olding] U[nit] for 2 weeks course. Burton & Campbell on same course. Took batman Hughes with me. Germans march against Yugoslavia & Greece. Brigadier McQueen at officers mess M[otor] T[ransport] Depot for week end. Saw him & Col[onel] Bailey there, also Chappin[?], Brown & Burton.

April 7th – Bordon (Mon)

Course proves to be a refresher common to all arms course not O[?] O[?] as stated when I received notice to attend.

April 8th – Borden (Tue)

Course consists of

a. Weapons training

b. Defence against gas

c. Foot Drill

d. Lectures on Military Education

e. Map Reading

f. Motorcycling

Went m[otor]/c[ycling] and got along very well.

April 9th – Bordon (Wed)

Had 6 mile route march in afternoon. Course proving interesting & a good break from grind of office work at 2 Div[ision].

April 10th – Bordon (Thu)

More m[otor]/c[ycl]ing. Climbed hills & drove over roughest cross-country we could find. rather tired & stiff after 3 1/2 hours of it.

April 11th – Bordon (Fri)

Visited Chappin [?] etc at M[otor] T[ransport] Depot – had supper there. Capt[ain] Rackert[?] said that he was told by Brig[adier] M[cQueen] that I am to go to C[ana]d[ia]n Corps.

April 12th – Bordon (Sat)

Classes in morning. Visited 2 Div[ision] & Farnborough in afternoon. My photos not ready. No dance to be held this week. Rec[eive]‘d letter from Col[onel] T[?] at C[ana]d[ia]n Corps thanking me for vehicle card index system – he said that consideration was being given to using system at Corps H[ead] Q[uarters]. Weather cold for 1st week of course. Sweater very useful.

April 13th – Bordon (Sun)

Went to communion service at 11.00am. Rested all day. Weather warmer.


March in Farnborough

March 31, 1941


Mar 17 Attended O[ther] R[ank]‘s dance at Blenheim B[arrac]ks – only fair.

Mar 18 Cable from Renie thanks for [pounds] 23.

Mar 19 Visisted Harry Murray & had supper at his Mess (Lille). Visited 14th F[ie]ld Co[mpan]y R[oyal] C[anadian] E[ngineers] (& met M[a]j[or] Jones, O[fficer] C[ommanding], from Regina) to get def[?] 1098 for C[anadian] M[ilitary] H[ead] Q[uarters] Also saw Carpenter – took Harry along.

Mar 20 Gordon Rogers called at 2nd Div[ision] to see me.

Mar 21 Rec[eive]‘d Renie’s Photo (lovely).

Mar 22 “C” Mess Party at Elles House – I arranged decorations, novelties & music.

Mar 23 Gen[reral] Odlum orders all officers at H[ead] Q[uarters] to walk 5 miles daily.

Mar 24 Prepared time study of Ord[nance] clerks at 2 Div[ision] as required by C[ana]d[ia[n] Corps. Mailed parcel with books for boys & scarf for R[enie].

Mar 25 Marked list of things for parcels as sent by Renie. (Return[e]‘d in 185)

Mar 26 Had my photo taken in Farnboro’[ugh].

Mar 27 King & Queen visited 2 Div[ision]. I shook hands with both as did all H[ead] Q[uarters] Officers.

Mar 28 Thunder storm – lasted 3 h[ou]rs. Note from Aunt B[?] re serious illness of Gran Spencer due to fall.

Mar 29 Big celebration at “C” Mess in honor of “Joe” Lakes Ap[pointmen]t as D[?]A[?]D[?]O[?] 2 Div[ision]. Soda, bean & catsup fight.

Mar 30 Dinner at Wheatsheaf.

Mar 31 2 Div[ision] will go on 4 day scheme.

March Generally

Weather cool – much rain. Raids not very severe. A number of C[ana]d[ia]ns killed when bomb hit Cafe de Paris in London, among whom an engineer officer of 2 Div[ision]. Lease & lend bill will soon bear fruit.


February Returns

February 28, 1941

February 1st – Farnborough (Sat)

Sun shining during afternoon. Visited Col[onel] T[?] & Col[onel] C[?] at Corps re vehicle returns etc. Had dinner in the mess – 3 double scotches. Found that train leaves Farnborough Station at 09.05 hours for Sidmouth. Rec[eive]‘d cable from Prof[essor] Clarke stating that arrangements had been made for introductions in Sidmouth Area. Rec[eive]‘d copy of Haddow Report from London U[niversity] Library.

February 2nd – Farnborough (Sun)

Worked all day preparing precis on vehicle returns. The sun shone for several hours. Went to Egham after supper. No alerts.

February 3rd – Farnborough (Mon)

Cleaned up work so that I could go on leave. Bought leather holster & arm pouch for 19/3. Bought double scotch al round for 4 Ord[nance] Officers – 13/6. Snow on ground. No alerts.

February 4th – Sidmouth (Tue)

Left Farnborough for Sidmouth, Devon at 9.05. Arrived in Sidmouth at 2.00. Snow 9″ deep in Devon. Grace met me at station. Went to Greenbank – saw Aunts B[?] & Thirze. Stayed at Eagehurst [?] Hotel for night. Cost me 10/- for bed & breakfast. Also paid 1/- for gas in bedroom.

February 5th – Sidmouth (Wed)

Went to Exeter in A.M. with Grace. Saw Mr Armfeld, director of education for Devon & arranged with him & his assistant, Mr Phillips to visit certain schools in Devon this afternoon & on Thur[sday] & Fri[day]. Went to see Exeter Cathedral before this – sent book re same to Renie. Ate dinner in Deller’s with Grace & took menu to send to Renie. Visited Exmouth senior schools in afternoon – Mr Bulled, headmaster boys’ school & Miss Webster, headmistress, girls school. Boys & girls carried on poultry work – incubation. Weather cool – roads icy – one alert in evening. Moved to teed’s for duration of visit.

February 6th – Sidmouth (Thu)

Visited Teignmouth S[enio]r co-ed school under Mr Seymour. Saw pottery work – wheel & bake oven in classroom. Seven teachers short (ill or called up). Then went to Secondary School (called Teignmouth Grammar Sch[ool] under Mr Silvester – although chiefly academic, they also had art, woodwork & domestic science. No alerts. Snow all melted.

February 7th – Sidmouth (Fri)

Visisted Honiton S[enio]r School under Mr Griffiths & j[unio]r school under Miss Lee. Both schools very new & up to date. Spoke to several classes on Canada. Promised to send Canada Year Book etc to Mr Griffiths. Bought a sample of Honiton lace & 2 pieces of Honiton pottery for Renie (owl & fox). Weather wonderfully warm & bright. One alert during evening.

February 8th – Sidmouth (Sat)

Walked round Sidmouth to see various views with Aunt B[?]. Took Aunt B[?] & Thirza to pictures after tea. Weather fine. No alerts.

February 9th – Sidmouth (Sun)

Went to church with Aunts B[?] & Thirza.

At Walduck’s[?] for rest of day. Mr Walduck[?] gave me cameo[?] for Renie & an old coin. Heard Churchill’s speech at 9.00pm – excellent. No alerts. Weather rather cloudy – we climbed peak-hill to see the village below during afternoon. Gathered snow drops & crocuses to send to Renie.

February 10th – Sidmouth (Mon)

Left Sidmouth for F[arnborough] at 12.30. Lunch on train – 4/3. Arrived F[arnborough] at 5.00pm. Could not get a car to go to “C” mess as H[ead] Q[uarters] Div[ision] on a scheme, so took bus & walked rest of way. Got 14 letters from Renie & parcel (also 9 rolls papers) & one from Mother. Weather beautiful. No alerts.

February 11th – Farnborough (Tue)

At work again – feeling first rate. Six more letters from Renie & 4 bundles papers. No alerts. Weather fine. Max Meighen on leave.

February 12th – Farnborough (Wed)

Parcel containing cake & sox & candy from Renie. No alerts. Weather fine – some rain & fog last night.

February 13th – Farnborough (Thu)

Considerable trouble brewing re returns demanded by Corps – our units slow in making returns ready for Corps. Weather beautiful. No alerts.

February 14th – Farnborough (Fri)

Worked until 1.30am getting vehicle returns ready for corps. One alert weather fair.

February 15th – Farnborough (Sat)

Dance at Holloway. Joe & I took dinner – chickens etc & ate it there with Stella & Jack. Rain & one alert.

February 16th – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather damp. No alerts.

February 17th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather fine. One alert.

February 18th – Farnborough (Tue)

Major Downes went on leave for a week (12.00h[ou]rs). Started to get returns on veh[icles] ready. Weather damp. No alerts.

February 19th – Farnborough (Wed)

Veh[icle] returns coming in better than last week. P[rive]te Williams very good on returns. Weather colder & wet. No alerts.

February 20th – Farnborough (Thu)

Only 6 veh[icle] returns not in by deadline. Weather fine. One alert.

February 21st – Farnborough (Fri)

Went to Corps with completed returns. Col[onel] T[?] was very pleased with the promptness of the returns & the heatness of the work. He took some to Brig[adier] M[cQueen] who telephoned General O[?] & congratulated him on the fine veh[icle] returns from 2 C[ana]d[ia]n Div[ision]. I had a conference with Col[onel] T[?] re a simplified veh[icle] return form. Had dinner at Corps & continued conference. Then I drove back to 2 Div[ision] with rough draft at 9.30. P[riva]te Williams & I worked until 1.30 getting out a very fine typed copy of proposed draft. This finished I drove to Corps & got back by 3.30am – very tired but quite well pleased with results.

February 22nd – Farnborough (Sat)

Had Williams prepare a copy of “draft” form to include in the Gen[?] & G[?] I[?]‘s copy of vehicle returns. Went to 1st Div[ision] for A[nti]/T[ank] rifle accessories. Also dished out tools for 30 carriers in shed 8. Got lost on way home & landed up in Horsham instead of Guildford. Weather dull & wet. No alerts.

February 23rd – Farnborough (Sun)

I dished out A[nti]/T[ank] rifles at shed 8 during morning. Prepared veh[icle] return form for units & duplicated some. Not through until 7.00. Weather bright. One alert.

February 24th – Farnborough (Mon)

Delivered new form to units – took all afternoon. Weather fine. One alert.

February 25th – Farnborough (Tue)

Collected all returns from units – 9.00 – 12.00. Maj[or] D[ownes] returned from leave 12.00h[ou]rs. No alerts. Weather fine – frosty in morning. Pocked up injured M[otor]/C[ycle] man of R[oyal] A[ir] F[orce] on road at 11.00pm. He had run into a civil lorry. Not very badly injured – but semi-unconcious – name was Stan Bryant – 40 Roberts Road, Aldershot.

February 26th – Farnborough (Wed)

Compiling prpoer veh[icle] estab[lishment] for all battle orders of Div[ision] Col[onel] Cope[?] visited from Corps. Got ready for “Dog” – move off to be at 21.30h[ou]rs. Weather colder but fairly clear. One alert.

February 27th – Farnborough (Thu)

Landed at Chidingfold – “Dog” Rear H[ead] Q[uarters] at 03.00am. Raining continuously. Slept at “Crown”, a 13th Century Inn. Used bed roll on floor – so did Joe. Max slept in the double bed. had breakfast & dinner at H[ead] Q[uarters]. Worked at “Dog” & regular routine in F[ie]ld office set up in a bell [-tent]. Left for home at 5pm. Still raining – back in mess at Ellen House for dinner (supper).

February 28th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather wet. One alert. Completed veh[icle] returns for 2nd Div[ision] & delivered same to Corps at 10.30. Back in bed by 12.00pm. (Revolver drill at 14.00hrs).


January in Farnborough.

January 31, 1941

January 1st – Farnborough (Wed)

Worked all day. Rec[eive]‘d parcel from Mrs Elsom & papers from Renie. Weather cool & clear – no frost. No alarms up to 10.00pm.

January 2nd – Farnborough (Thu)

Rec[eive]‘d Leaders [Regina papers] Dec 4, 5 & 6 & Star Weekly Dec 7 from Renie. Weather cool, bright & a little frost. One early morning alarm & one after supper. Col[onel] Townesend visited Ord[nance] 2nd Div[ision]. Alone in office for most of day.

January 3rd – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather much colder – about 20o above zero. Plumbing frozen in office toilet. Elles House nice & warm. A skiff of snow – quite a lot at coast. Wore leather jacket under battle dress. Developed slight head cold. One alarm after supper. Bought 100 watt lamp for studying – 2/6.

January 4th – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather freezing all day. One night alert. Received parcel from Renie with pyjamas & coffee dripolater, 1lb coffee, 2 small cans milk & chocolate bars.

January 5th – Farnborough (Sun)

Received Nos 53, 57, 59, 63, 64, 65, 66 from Renie. A letter from Harold & one from mother. Weather cold. One night alert

January 6th – Farnborough (Mon)

Rec[eive]‘d letters Nos 60, 61 & 62 from Renie & 3 bundles of papers. Weather cold & roads very icy. In London – Acton – 3 daylight alerts. Feeling tough due to cold & ‘flu condition. Snow at night.

January 7th – Farnborough (Tue)

Ground covered with snow – roads very slippery. Very foggy & dull all day. No alerts.

January 8th – Farnborough (Wed)

Snow all melted. Weather warm & damp. No alerts by 8.00pm.

January 9th – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather warm. Night Alert – 3 batmen killed in Lille Officer’s Mess by bombs &one Welshman in Blenheim B[arrac]ks.

January 10th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather fine. No alert.

January 11th – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather mild. Night alert – second fire raid on London – failed.

January 12th – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather mild. No alerts.

January 13th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather cooler. No alerts. Had hair cut. Major Downes went on Leave.

January 14th – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather cooler. No alerts. Went to dinner at Hornes [?] with Lake in Guildford area – then to Red Crow [?] dance & back to Hornes for late lunch. Not home until 4.00am.

January 15th – Farnborough (Wed)

Snow & fog. No alerts. wrote to London U[niversity] Library for renewal of book & loan of Haddow report 1926. John Miller saw Mrs Aderly in Brighton.

January 16th – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather cool – snow did not melt except on the roads which became very slippery necessitating sand being sprinkled thereon. ONe alert from 8.00pm to 9.30pm.

January 17th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather bright & freezing – snow still here. An alert in early morning – 2am/. Germans now known to be in Sicily with strong air-base from which they dive-bombed our Med[iteranian] fleet – cruiser sunk & aircraft carrier damage – our revenge, 40 junkers destroyed at German Sicilian base. On alert from 8pm to 11pm.

January 18th – Farnborough (Sat)

Heavy snowfall – mild & pleasant. Started to rain in evening – snow slushy. No alerts. Received statement of registration & 1st instalment of PhD fees from London U[niversity] – [pounds] 12-10-6. No alerts.

January 19th – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather mild and sunny – nearly all snow melted. Wrote to Chatwin re assistance for PhD fees. One alert in early evening.

January 20th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather wet. No alerts.

January 21st – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather still damp & fog. No alerts.

January 22nd – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather drier. Still no alerts this week.

January 23rd – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather fine – sunshine for a while. No alerts.

January 24th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather fine – fog in A.M. No alerts.

January 25th – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather fine. No alerts. On duty in afternoon – very busy.

January 26th – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather rainy in A.M. No alerts. On duty all day – very busy.

January 27th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather rainy. As no alert today we can count a whole week without an alert.

January 28th – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather wet. Daylight alert for about 1/2 h[ou]r in afternoon.

January 29th – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather still wet – No alerts.

January 30th – Farnborough (Thu)

Leave arranged – 9.00 h[ou]rs Feb[ruary] 4 to 9.00 h[ou]rs Feb[ruary] 11. No alerts.

January 31st – Farnborough (Fri)

Made date to visit C[ana]d[ia]n Corps with Max on Sat[urday]. No alerts. Weather still very wet. Great many returns from units gives much office work.


Farnborough and Family Christmas

December 31, 1940

December 1st – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather cool – misty. One night alarm. On duty in Office all day with Capt[ain] Lake.

December 2nd – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather cool & frosty. Worked at F[ie]ld Stores. Dinner at R[oyal] A[rmy] O[rdnance] C[orps] Mess. One night alarm.

December 3rd – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather foggy with rain. Went to London with Capt[ain] Lake, Cond[ucto]r [?]Latimer, and Harden who drove car 180. In London I did the following.

1. Saw Col McQueen re proper pay. He gave instructions to Conductor Elliot to send a cable to ottawa to have the extra pay ($ .75 per day) antedated as far as possible.

2. Had bank Book made up at Bank of Montreal.

3. Sent (pounds) 7 by P.L.T. [?] cable to Renie. Cable cost 5/- with Xmas greeting.

4. Had polyphoto taken – 48 positions – 3/4 – to be ready in 10 days.

5. Went to 17 Cockspur St[reet] & found that Dr Chatwin is located at Guildford as Chief Educational officer.

6. Went to Hawes & Sons, Opticians – 79 Leadenhall Street re glasses which were issued by Army by above. Had same adjusted & arranged if necessary to have a pair of rimless made.

7. Lunched at Officers Club opposite C[anadian] M[ilitary] H[ead] Q[uarters] for 3/6.

There was a daylight raid on London & 9 bombs were dropped but none close to me. Arrived home at 6.35pm after being away since 9.00am. One night alarm.

December 4th – Farnborough (Wed)

Worked in F[ie]ld Stores. Dinner at R[oyal] A[rmy] O[rdnance] C[orps] Mess. Rec[eive]‘d first parcel from Canada – from Renie containing cake & candy & cake from Catherine & 1/2 lb coffee from Champs [?].Weather very warm. One short night alarm.

December 5th – Farnborough (Thu)

Received cable from Renie stating that missing letters arrived Dec. 2 and that all to No 45 to now arrived in regina. I cabled back stating that one parcel with coffee, toffee etc had arrived & also that I have rec[eive]‘d No 38. Weather fine. One alarm.

December 6th – Farnborough (Fri)

Completed work at Field Stores. Very much impressed with accounting system under Major Messenger for M[ilitary] T[ransport] group. Weather cool. No alarms.

December 7th – Farnborough (Sat)

On duty in morning. Off in afternoon. Rec[eive]‘d 2nd parcel from Renie with cheese, crackers, chocolate, candy, nuts from Gerry Curle, 100 tea bags from Chomps [?], little things from Don & Jane, jam from renie & candy tc from the boys. No alarms. Weather very fine.

December 8th – Farnborough (Sun)

Dr Chatwin visited me re education. Gave me a letter to Clow Ford [?] who is now at Holloway College. Visited R[oyal] H[olloway] College in afternoon for tour of gr[oun]ds & b[ui]ld[in]gs & afternoon tea. Alarm lasted from 6pm until 5am – a dozen or so incendiaries dropped near some of 2nd Div[ision] barracks. Weather fine & bright.

December 9th – Farnborough (Mon)

No alarms. Weather moist & fairly warm. Major Downes returned at noon after having had 2 days privilege leave.

December 10th – Farnborough (Tue)

No alarms. Weather fine. Re[ceive]‘d PhD registration & outline on Education administration from Professor Clarke, Nottingham. Called on Mr Clow Ford of London U[niversity], Holloway College re use of Library. He promised to make arrangements for me to borrow books from London U[niversity] Library.

December 11th – Farnborough (Wed)

Rec[eive]‘d cable from Renie confirming receipt of Xmas money & letter No 50. Prepared application for Registration for PhD. All night alert. Weather rain.

December 12th – Farnborough (Thu)

Rec[eive]‘d parcels – one with Bathcake from Renie – other from Picardy’s (from Lady Teachers, Regina). Cabled Queen’s for confirmation of Degree. Mailed app[lication] for reg[istration] for PhD to Prof[essor] Clarke, Nottingham.

December 13th – Farnborough (Fri)

Rec[eive]‘d parcel with cake, candy, cocoa, tea & mince pies from Jessie & Harold-also little Xmas stocking in parcel from Shirley, Anne & Spencer. Seven rolls of newspaper came from Renie. Went to Dance at Skindles [?] in Maidenhead. weather very fine. No alarms.

December 14th – Farnborough (Sat)

Received eight letters from Renie, Nos 39, 40, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47. Some rain during afternoon & evening. Went to Bordon to G[eneral] H[olding] U[nit] with Capt[ain] Meighan re advance party for No. 1 Army F[ie]ld Workshops. Saw Grandjean & many others whom I knew. Called at 2nd Es [?] at Farnham with Mc [?] re release of required men. No alarms except 10 minute one during morning.

December 15th – Farnborough (Sun)

On duty all day at A[?] D[?] O[?] S[?] officer. Rec[eive]‘d application card & rules re borrowing from London U[niversity] Library as a result of Mr Clow Ford’s visit to the Librarian. Forwarded the above card with list of first books required for reading on PhD work. Weather very fine & mild. One alarm after supper.

December 16th – Farnborough (Mon)

Went to Bordon G[eneral] H[olding] U[nit] for Capt[ain] Meighan re ordnance personnel for for No. 1 A[rmy] F[ield] W[orkshop]. Dr. Chatwin called in A.M. & I invited him for lunch. He was pleased with what progress I had made re getting started on PhD work. He promised to cable Dep[artmen]t of Ed[ucation] Regina re my professional and academic qualification etc & phone me when answer arrived & deliver same to London U[niversity] when same arrives. In meantime he promised to write prof[essor] Clarke at Nottingham re above proceedings. weather rainy. No alarms.

December 17th – Farnborough (Tue)

Took over for Capt[ain] Meighan, O[?]M[?]E[?], for duration of his privilege leave. rather busy on Meighan’s work all day. Weather cool & bright. No alarms.

December 18th – Farnborough (Wed)

Went to cocktail party with Downes & Lake at R[oyal] A[rmy] O[rdnance] C[orps] Officers Mess, Aldershot. Rec[eive]‘d parcels of nuts from Frances Rowntree [?] & girls of Lakeview VIII’s. No alarms. Weather damp. rec[eive]‘d 2 rolls of papers from Renie. Phoned Uncle Alan stating will be at Purley for 3 days Xmas leave. Letter to A[?]D[?]O[?]S[?] stating that I am being made Lieut[enant] from Aug 12/40.

December 19th – Farnborough (Thu)

Received 2 more rolls of old newspapers from renie – delayed by being sent to R[oyal] C[anadian] A[rmy] S[ervice] C[orps]. Rec[eive]‘d & paid mess bill for Nov[ember] at 2/9 per day amounting to [pounds] 4:2:6. Everyone very dissatisfied with high cost of messing. Sent Xmas cables to Renie, Mother, & Harold (cost 9/6). Weather bright & warmer – no frost. One alarm at night – about 3 hours.

December 20th – Farnborough (Fri)

Received the first three books from Library of the U[niveristy] of London & did first reading towards PhD. Extremely busy in office all day. sent telegraph to Grace stating I would meet her at Hyde Park Corner at 1.45 Sat[urday]. Weather rather dark & foggy all day. One alarm after supper.

December 21st – Farnborough (Sat)

Off at 12.00 for week end. Left for London at 1.00 with Lake & McDonald in car 180 with Harden driving. Got mixed up between places to meet Grace & stood at Marble Arch for over an hour then walked to real Hyde Park Corner & found her there. Had tea in Cumberland Hotel – saw Miss Jack [?] & Miss White from Holloway College while Grace & I were there. Took buss, underground & buss again to get off at 23 Lawrence Avenue, Mill Hill, (near Hendon), London N.W. 7 where Aunt Grace (Mrs Owen Denney) lives with her daughter Josephine. Discovered Jos[ephine] to be an elementary teacher – she wants to come to Canada on exchange. Gun fire very loud during night raid on London. Big land mines at the Victoria Coach & R[ailwa]y Stations. Tremendous amount of glass blown out for block around. Some buildings completely demolished. Weather quite cool & windy. One daylight alert in London as well as above night raid.

December 22nd – Hendon (Sun)

Took Aunt Grace, cousin Josephine & cousin Grace to dinner at Hunter’s Hour [House?] – Green Hill – had Christmas dinner of Turkey & plum pudding with a bottle of white wine – all told it cost – 23/-. Left on Green Line bus for Farnborough at 5.15 [pm]. Arrived at Ellis House 6.30 in time for supper. One night alarm.

December 23rd – Farnborough (Mon)

Worked all day & after supper getting things in shape for Xmas leave. No alarms. Weather fine.

December 24th – Purley (Tue)

Left for London on 12.30 bus. Met uncle & proceeded to Purley on train from Victoria Station. Arrived in Purley 5.45. No alarms. Weather fine.

December 25th – Purley (Wed)

Xmas Day

Went to Wallington church for 8.00am communion with Uncle & Aunts Thirza, Howard & Raymond in car. Saw Uncle Cecil & Aunt Winnie there. Went to 11.00 Service with Howard to drive Grannie to Church. Returned & took Gran & Grandpa to Purley for Xmas dinner. Had excellent meal of Turkey & pudding & all the trimmings & wine. Present at the meal were Gran & Grandpa, Uncle Syd & Aunt Elsie, Aunt Winnie & Uncle Cecil, Aunt Thirza & Uncle Alan, Raymond & his girl Dorothy, Howard & myself. Weather cool but not freezing. No alarm. No snow. Gave presents of hankies to everyone. Also choc[olates] & sugar & tea & cigarettes. Only received 2 presents (Syd & Cecil).

December 26th – Purley & Farnborough

(Thu)

Dinner at Lucas’s with Reg & his wife with Mrs Holmes present. Took train to London at 2.45. Left London on bus at 4.10. Arrived Farnborough at 5.30. No alarms. Weather fine. Capt[ain] M[eighen] back from leave.

December 27th – Farnborough (Fri)

Worked all day. Visit R[?] R[?] C[?] re armourers & discovered they had an extra one of whom we were not aware. weather fine. New light fixtures installed in our offices – excellent illum[ination]. One night alarm.

December 28th – Farnborough (Sat)

Sherry party at Addlestone – dinner & dance “Pack Horse” – Staines. Not in until 4.30am. Weather fine. No alarms.

December 29th – Farnborough (Sun)

On duty all morning. Went to Oxford & saw prof[essor] Clarke re my PhD work – left 1.30 back 5.30 – 46 miles from Ellis House to Folly Bridge Oxford via Henley on Thames. Big fire raid on London. Weather fine.

December 30th – Farnborough (Mon)

Col[onel] McQueen, L[ieutenan]t Col[onel] Bailey, Major McInnis (Walter) visited Ord[nance] 2nd Div[ision]. Minister of N[ational] Def[ence] Ralston [?] visited H[ead] Q[uarters] 2nd Div[ision] & addressed officers & men – all Officers shook hands with the minister. Weather fine. No alarms.

December 31st – Farnborough (Tue)

On duty all day. Stayed in & studied all evening. Rec[eive]‘d parcel from Renie containing my leather Jacket & 2 p[ai]r[s] socks – cabled back 2/6. Weather foggy with rain. No alarms up to 12.00p.m.


Settling down at Farnborough

November 30, 1940

November 1st – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather fine. One alarm. Went to Garrison Theatre & heard Lloyd Shakespeare & his band.

November 2nd – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather wet. No alarms. Major Downes & Capt[ain] Meighen off for weekend.

November 3rd – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather still wet. No alarms. Went to see Shirley Temple in “Poor Little Rich Girl” – very good.

November 4th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather showery. One short alarm. Gas alert practice – wore respirator for 1/2 hour. Bought 4 sheets for 18s[hillings]. Saw Edward G Robinson in the “Magic Bullet”. Sent Renie ordnance branch. Capt[ain] Lake went to C[anadian] M[ilitary] H[ead] Q[uarters] & ordered me a purse for Renie – also bought me cap badges. Bought four unbleached cotton sheets for 18/-.

November 5th – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather showery. Went to Garrison Theatre – not so hot. No alarms but planes over during night. Invitation for 2nd Div[ision] Officers to Holloway College for tea & dance on Sat[urday].

November 6th – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather very fine. Stayed in in evening. Rec[eive]‘d No 18 from Renie – it took 18 days to get here. One alarm – planes overhead now.

November 7th – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather very good. Went to Garrison Theatre – park [?]. 3 alarms.

November 8th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather rainy – one alarm. Went to Royal to see vaudeville with Phyllis Dixie.

November 9th – Farnborough (Sat)

Worked in morning. Off for weekend. Went to Holloway College with some 15 other Officers of 2nd Div[ision] for tea & Dance with ladies – 3.30. Went to Slough for another dance with some of the college ladies after the tea. One alarm. Weather wet until late evening.

November 10th – Farnborough (Sun)

Stayed in all day until evening when some of us went to Grey Fosters & Wheat Sheaf at Egan to take ladies from Holloway College to dinner. Meal the bank [?] – cost me £1/6 for meal for myself & lady. Saw a Mr White from Saskatoon at Grey Fosters Inn. Back at C Mess by 10.30pm. No alarms. Weather wet until evening.

November 11th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather very wet & cold. Started my work on court of inquiry re loss of 28 bayonets & scabbards by Essex Scottish. Went to Farnham & had excellent coffee with Capt[ain] Lake. Visited field Stores. One alarm. Letter from London U[niversity].

November 12th – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather rainy. One alarm – big moonlight raid on Coventry. Saw “North West Passage” at Scala Theatre.

November 13th – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather fair. Two alarms. Went to H[olloway] College in evening.

November 14th – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather rainy. One alarm.

November 15th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather showery. No alarms.

November 16th – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather showery. No alarms. Golfed at cove [?] with Padre McLean during afternoon. As no car called for us went to Cameron High[landers] Officers’ Mess & had dinner & met Dr Robson. Went to Holloway College & thence to dance at the Riviera at Maidenhead.

November 17th – Farnborough (Sun)

Went to Oxford & saw Prof[essor] Clarke re education study. Made tentative arrangements to study administration in Eng[lish] schools. No alarms. Weather beautiful until night – then heavy rain.

 November 18th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather wet. One alarm – Garrison theatre.

November 19th – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather wet. One alarm lasted until early morn[ing]. Went to S.S.R. Garrison Theatre.

November 20th – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather fine. Went to Holloway College for farewell party for Lolly Nacht [?] who is leaving for Brazil. One alarm – night.

November 21st – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather wet. One alarm.

November 22nd – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather fine. Night long alarm.

November 23rd – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather fine. Saw my name in C[anadian] A[rmy] S[?] F[?] Routine orders for extra pay while working in A[?] D[?] O[?] S[?] office, H[ead] Q[uarters] 2nd C[ana]d[ia]n Div[ision] from Oct 14/40. One short day alarm, one long night alert.

November 24th – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather beautiful. One short night alert. On duty all day with Major Downes. Had coffee at Royal Holloway College with Tom Brown (M[a]j[or]?).

November 25th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather fine. No alarms. Phone call from Miss Miller of Hobson’s that she is mailing my Xmas present to Canada (Renie & boys).

November 26th – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather fine. One night alarm.

November 27th – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather frost. One night alarm.

November 28th – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather frosty. No alarms.

November 29th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather foggy. One alarm. worked at Field Stores. Dinner at Officers Mess, R[oyal] A[rmy] O[rdnance] C[orps].

November 30th – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather foggy. One night alarm. Party at Mess for Capt[ain] Simmons who left for Div[isional] Sig[nal]s Mess. Girls from R[oyal] H[olloway] College & No 5 C[ana]d[ia]n Gen[eral] Hospital. Not in bed before 5am. fog so bad that we could scarcely move with cars. (At F[ie]ld Stores in A.M.)


Borden and Farnborough

October 31, 1940

October 1st – Borden (Tue)

Bert Campbell to go to No. 1 Ordnance Field Park but will stay with G[eneral] H[olding] U[nit] until he has finished helping L[ieutenan]t Grandjean with checking unit stores. Major Perry, O[fficer] C[ommanding] Gen[eral] Co[mpan]y to go on leave to-morrow & leave me in charge of orderly room. One alarm in early part of night. Weather still fine. Moved from small room at back of Portman Cottage No. 2 to large front room as Major Morrison to have small one, Closing No 1 Portman.

October 2nd – Borden (Wed)

Received 1st letter from Renie – No 7 written Sept. 4. No word of first six letters. Send radiogram (& paid return) – “Seven arrived to-day others missing-Love Denney”. 2 alarms – one in morning – one 20.00 hrs. Letter from Aunt Bee.

October 3rd – Borden (Thu)

Rainy weather. Had rubber soles & heels put on boots for 5/6. Received No. 6

letter from Renie. No alarms.

October 4th – Borden (Fri)

Rainy weather. Received No. 8 letter from Renie. Two alarms.

October 5th – Borden (Sat)

Weather fine. Went to Selbourne on foot with McKinnon. Saw aged church & 1200 year old yew tree. Could buy no meal during alarm so bought biscuits & ate them on way back. Arrived back at 7.30pm. Quite tired. Two alarms.

October 6th – Borden (Sun)

Very wet day. Took Communion at 7.20am. Bert Campbell went on leave. Father McCabe took Hammie & I to picture show at 6.00pm. Col[onel] Devey arrived with a unit from Canada. Wrote to Renie, Rogers & Harry Murray. No alarms.

October 7th – Borden (Mon)

Weather fine. Two alarms. Heard from Grandjean that MacKinnon & I likely to be attached to No 1 Ordnance Field Park. Had rifle drill for Lieuts.

October 8th – Borden (Tue)

Weather showery. MacKinnon on ranges with Major Morrison in charge. Major Perry returned from leave. Lecture in Garrison Theatre by Air Marshall Sir Phillip Joubert on our air force which was very good. One alarm at night.

October 9th – Borden (Wed)

Weather showery. Wrote to London University re degrees in education. Obtained permission from Major Perry to go to London to see Col[onel] McQueen. Received letter from Aunt T[hirza ?] with 7 snaps which I sent to Renie. One alarm from 7.30 – 11.30 at night.

October 10th – Borden (Thu)

Weather very showery. Left for London by coach bus at 8.10am (6/6). Arrived 11.15. Took Omnibus (2D) to C[anadian] M[ilitary] H[ead] Q[uarters] [?]. Saw Col[onel] McQueen who after interview arranged to send me to 2nd Div[ison] H[ead] Q[uarters] to understudy Major Downes the A.D.O.L. [?] 2ND Div[ision]. Ate lunch with L[ieutenan]t Cannon across the street from Canada House at Officers club – only 1/6 for good meal. Went up Strand and saw damage to St Martin’s on Strand & Law Courts. Purchased map of Pembroke (3/-) & England (5/-) from Phillips, 327 Fleet Street. Phoned Lucas’ & got Raymond. Everyone OK in that area. Returned to Victoria Coach Station & had tea & left Borden at 5.15. Arrived back 8.15pm. Just then Bert Campbell returned from leave & had Eddie Hill (L[ieutenan]t) from Regina with him. Hill is with R[oyal] A[rmy] S[ervice] C[orps] & had just returned from hospital & leave. Three alarms. Received a telegram from Renie & also a letter, a letter from mother & one from Harvey Anderson. Lost my gloves somewhere in Farnham when changing buses.

October 11th – Borden (Fri)

Phoned McQueen, Col[onel] re fast move & also Downes, Major. Instructed McKinnon in Orderly room duties. Capt[ain] Bell came to take Bert to the Field park & I rode as far as Aldershot & saw major Downes & got material for study until mydemand goes through. One alarm. weather bright with hoar frost in morning. Went to Lille Barracks to see Harry Murray & found that he was away on leave.

October 12th – Borden (Sat)

Studied material from Maj[or] D[ownes]. Three short alarms. Party at mess very good.

October 13th – Borden (Sun)

Studied. R[oyal] C[anadian] A[rmy] S[ervice] C[orps] 96 O[ther] R[anks] & 4 Officers arrived in camp-2 in my room. Long night raid. Visited Windsor.

October 14th – Farnborough (Mon)

Drafted to 2nd Div[ision] H[ead] Q[uarters] to be learner in A.D.O.L.’s [?] office. Major Downes not very pleased as he had not been notified of my coming. Introduced to Maj[or] Gen[eral] Odlum by Col[onel] Wiekes [?] who was very pleasant – shook hands asked few questions & said good-bye after welcoming me to 2nd Div[ision]. At present I am only attached here. Put in “C” mess – sleep in front room (sort of parlour) – meals in same b[ui]ld[in]g. Food A1. Three alarms – one very long night raid over London. Wet weather.

October 15th – Farnborough (Tue)

Up at 7 & walked to 2nd Div[ision] H[ead] Q[uarters] Offices. Did nothing all day but observe Maj[or] Downes at work. Bridge in evening – lost 1/6. Two day alarms. One on now. Weather wet.

October 16th – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather wet & damp. Visited No. 3 Provo[st] Company & No. 2 Pioneer Bat[talion ?] R[oyal] C[anadian] E[ngineers] to interview them re deficiencies. A.D.O.L/ rated my work as excellent. Sent cable to Renie with my new address – 15 words for 6/3. One alarm.

October 17th – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather fair. Officers from 2nd A[nti] T[ank] Regiment called in office re m[otor] T[ransport]. Reported Harry Murray doing fine – took my regards to him. Major Downes not feeling so well. Went to N[avy] A[rmy] A[irforce] F[orces] I[nstitute] show in evening – free to Canadian Officers at Garrison Theatre. One alarm.

October 18th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather foggy & rainy all day. I was given charge of War Diary for A.D.O.L office, and also a signature for impressed account. I walked to H[ead] Q[uarters] & back twice – 4×1.5 miles = 6 miles and feel fine for the exercise. One alarm and a bomb dropped somewhere in neighborhood & shook everything in our mess.

October 19th – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather beautiful. Went to Holding Unit, Bramshot & M[otor] T[ransport] Depot, Borden with Major Downes. Found that McKinnon had been attached to Field Park at Epsom & that my mail had been forwarded to 2nd Div[isional] H[ead] Q[uarters]. One alarm & some bombs in vicinity.

October 20th – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather perfect. Stayed in office al day alone – M[a]j[or] D[ownes] came in at 5pm. Walked to & from H[ead] Q[uarters] both times as I have done for the past few days. Will continue to do so, weather permitting. One alarm – no bombs by 10.00pm.

October 21st – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather rainy. Major D[ownes] at C[anadian] M[ilitary] H[ead] Q[uarters] – left me in office. Only one warning in evening. Garrison theatre in evening.

October 22nd – Farnborough – (Tue)

Weather simply lovely & warm. Received loads of ail including 2 letters from Renie & 4 bundles of papers from her. Raid warning lasted nearly all nght long. Ans[wer] from London University.

October 23rd – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather cold & foggy. Rec’d two more bundles of papers. Saw “Convoy” & “London Can Take It” at Empire Theatre – excellent. Only one short alarm after supper.

October 24th – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather cold & foggy. No alarm but planes overhead after supper & at mid-night. Send application form for PhD. to London “U”[niversity] Institute of Ed[ucation] – temporarily at Nottingham – on account of air raids in London, I guess.

October 25th – Farnborough (Fri)

Weather quite cool. Major Downes ill in afternoon. I OKed all indents with proper authority. One alarm – still on at 11.15 [pm].

October 26th – Farnborough (Sat)

Weather cool but fair. Major D[ownes] back at work. I have to-morrow off. Although no alert had sounded after an all clear at noon, about 1.30, a German Bomber dived through the clouds & dropped 2 H[igh] E[xplosives] & an oil bomb. The gravel & dirt fell on our mess – Ellen [?] House – 2 blocks away. No one was hurt as bombs fell in ground between 2 houses – fairly large craters. Much machine gunning & AC AC [Anti Aircraft] fire accompanied the action. Later we heard the Dornier had been destroyed by spitfires. The blasts fairly rocked our mess & broke windows in houses over a block from its crater.

October 27th – Farnborough (Sun)

Weather very fine. Not up till nearly nine. Had day off. Went for walk in morning & again in evening. Three alarms – one still on. Some AC AC fire nearby.

October 28th – Farnborough (Mon)

Weather cool. Captain Lake D[?]A[?]D[?]O[?]S[?]-O[?] returned from convalescence at Garnons, Hereford. Two alarms. Few bombs in distance.

October 29th – Farnborough (Tue)

Weather very fine. Working on vehicle discrepancies. Wearing serge as batman fixing anklets with new green blanco. Went to Garrison Theatre with Bradley. One alarm.

October 30th – Farnborough (Wed)

Weather fine. Have been working on vehicle discrepancies for six days now. No alarms. Major D[ownes] moved into other office. Meighen, Lake & I have our own table each in room together.

October 31st – Farnborough (Thu)

Weather very wet. Completed report on vehicle discrepancies. No alarms.


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.