Letters Home No3

Saturday Dec 11th 1943

By Tricia Leonard

Photo:love from George Dec 14th 1943

love from George Dec 14th 1943

from Tricia Leonard's collection

Dear everybody,

Well, I'm still liking it, and Cardington is not half as bad a everybody seems to think.  It is a wonder the NCO's do not loose their tempers oftener.  We all took our "civvies" to Cardington Station to be sent home, and you should receive them by Thursday week.  Let me know if you don't and I must write and tell them.  I have kept my shoes but couldn't keep the case. It would have been a nuisance anyway.

Sunday Dec 12th

We are leaving here tomorrow, and reveille is at 03.00hrs.  We don't know where we are going, but I expect it's Skegness.
We had an advance on our pay of 10 shillings on Thursday.  I get 3 shillings a day or will do.  I've got all my uniform and the boots are not so bad.  They rub a bit at the top but they're alright otherwise.  We get one leather and one rubber pair.
There are 34 in our hut and a cockney sleeps under me, a chap from Newcastle on the left and a chap from North Wales on my right!
We've got to wear all our webbings on the journey tomorrow, if we can find a place for it all.  We packed all our kit bags neatly last night with our best boots on't'bottom as instructed and this morning we had to wear them for a Church parade.  Were we annoyed.  There were about 500 on parade, 200 recruits (all in uniform) and the rest were NCOS.  The step was pretty awful, as we were right at the back, out of hearing of the band.
We had our photos taken in hut groups to-day.  They are a shilling each!  I have ordered three and they are going to be sent on to Skeggy to us. I will send you one from there.
We went in the gas chamber yesterday.  We have had no instruction as to how to put the masks on or how to get them back in the case and we had to do it how we thought best.  The gas was CAP and we had to sniff it with our face pieces off.  Sob! Sob!
There are quite a lot of planes around here, mostly Yankees; Torts, Lightnings, Thunderbolts, Spits, Stirlings, Lancasters, and Liberators.
The food is very good here and there is usually plenty.  I eat meat, greens and, well, anything they give me.
It's very cold here and the other morning there was snow on the ground.
One of the lads just asked our corporal if he knew where we are going and he said we finish the journey on a camel.
My number is 3008677, and after marking every bit of my kit with it I certainly know it off by heart.
I'm writing a diary but it's a bit behind because we have so much to do.
I wish you could see us dressing up tomorrow morning, it should be good, with a large and heavy kitbag, a water bottle, a mess tin, a haversack and a lot of webbing hanging from us like on a Christmas Tree.

Well I had better finish here as it's nearly tea time.

Ta-ta for now

This page was added on 11/10/2007.