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War news 1942
September 24th 1942

My dear boys and girls
First of all apologies to those whose extracts do not appear in this issue. I have received over thirty letters from the lads away this week, and one cablegram from the N.W. Frontier of India. Dick Burns, R.N. in his letter gives a really good subject for discussion. You will remember that on Sept. 10th. I quoted Harry Woosey as saying that after the war Tarleton Church would be packed with grateful worshippers, and I said that human memory is short. Dick Burns now writes "I read in your N.L. dated Sept.10th. a quotation by you in reference to Harry Woosey’s statement about a large congregation. You are looking at your own sad experiences and I trust that you will be mistaken this time when God seems fit to give us the Peace, when He thinks we are good enough to have it. Not just peace with the human race, but the Peace of God the one and only lasting Peace. So I do hope that Harry Woosey will be correct in his statement and that you are wrong." If, as Dick says, an absolute change of heart is needed, how would you bring it about. Gratitude for a News Letter does not betoken it. However, thanks very much, Dick, for your letter. As you, know I like a good argument and I hope that it will cause a good many in barrack rooms and billets.
With my love, my prayers and my Blessing,
Ever your devoted servant and Shepherd.

George Sutton (opposite Chapel) married Ruth Royle, of Didsbury Manchester, on Saturday. His mother and nearly all the family went to Manchester for the event. John Gidden, Blankgate Lane, married Mary Tindsley on Saturday at Tarleton Methodist Chapel. They are going to live at "'the Ranch",and his father and mother are living at Cuerdon Farm, with their daughter Wendy (Mrs. Robert Bonney). Jack Walsh, White House, Sollom, joined the R.A.F. on Wednesday. Margaret Coulton, Hesketh Lane, is engaged to Hugh Watson of Bretherton, who used to manage Tarleton mill. Philip Rigby, Fermor Road, has arrived in India. Billie Ellison is home for 28 days agricultural leave. Norman Barron and John Hornby (Fermor Road), have had their agricultural leave extended a fortnight, making six weeks in all. Mr. William Price, Blackgate Lane, was buried at Tarleton on Tues. First part of funeral service in Methodist Chapel taken by Mr. Harker, minister at Ormskirk, and Mr. Moore, new Minister at Croston. The Rector took the Committal at the Churchyard. Bert and Harry got leave to see their father before he died and stayed for the funeral. Sgt. Ernie Ball is home on convalescent leave and his wife has come up from Luton to be with him. Anne Hunter, daughter of Mr. John Hunter, the new Tarleton Postmaster, is engaged to Stanley Llewellyn, of Liverpool (Tue Brook, West Derby), and hopes to be married on October 22nd. Dick Taylor and Albert Becconsall, home on leave, paid the Rector a courtesy call last week; so also did Sgt. Jimmy Leacy, and Sgt. Nick Dewhurst. Mr. Thomas Iddon, Hesketh Lane, father of Mrs. Robinson, Mrs. Wilcock and Messrs. Harry and Dick Iddon, died on Friday and was buried at Tarleton on Monday. He was 82. Nothing whatever has been heard of AC2 William Sutton, Blackgate Lane, since he set sail for an unknown destination last Dec. The Rector has presented a silver challenge cup to the Tarleton Platoon Home Guard for inter section competition. The Rector preached at Croston Parish Church last Sunday afternoon for their Harvest Thanksgiving Service. Tom Rigby (Toll Bar) has sent his Mother a snap taken of himself and a few of his mates enjoying a huge basket of bananas somewhere in India. Mere Brow Harvest Thanksgiving services last Sunday. Large numbers at early communion. Mr. I.T. Peters, B.A. headmaster of Tarleton C.E. Schools preached in the afternoon and the Rector preached at night. The service at Tarleton was taken by the Rev. Peter Heuvel, a Dutchman who has been 17 years at Capetown and is going back there.

From our old friend in the M.E.F. Sapper Dick Johnson, comes an airmail letter saying "Everything is quite good at present, nothing to complain about. All mail at present is held up and I have had nothing for six weeks. (His letter is dated 5 9 42.) Without the N.L. coming regularly I seem to be out of touch with what is happening at home, for in them I find more news than in any of the local papers. It was quite a surprise to hear Mr. Churchill was visiting out here; although I did not actually see him I saw his car from a distance." Another letter from the M.E.F. dated 6-9-42 comes from Sign. Jim Sutton (Hesketh Lane). He says "A few lines in answer to your N.Ls. which I received last week. I received them with ten letters from home the first I had received for 11 weeks, so you can guess how pleased I was. I suppose that you would hear that I had met Leslie Hodson in Beirut, Syria, quite a pleasant surprise. When you have to repair a motor in the desert with the sun blazing down thousands of flies tormenting you, and maybe in the midst of a sand storm, it is no picnic, but we still manage to get a laugh out of it. Please remember me through the N.L. to my cousin William Sutton. I have received no news from home saying where he is. ( See the Home Front News in this issue, Jim).To all the lads on Active Service, Good Luck". Two identical air graphs came from LAC Roger Watson now in Ceylon. The P.O. must have been over eager Roger; He says " I am beginning to think that the Air Force was designed to carry me as far as possible in the shortest possible time. Wales, Scotland, the Shetlands, Ireland, and now half way across the globe. Where next I wonder? My journey here was absolutely uneventful apart from mal de mer four days from the end and that after four months at sea: I can't describe the place except to say that it is hot (as you'd expect), and that we live midst palms pineapples, bananas, lizards and natives! Remember me to all the lads please, and answer for me that I'm fine and can't complain at all. I hope that you are not trying to take on more work than you can manage". Another air mail from Gunner Harry Harrison from the M.E.F. saying "We had a wonderful crossing out here, and I thanked God for landing each safe and sound. We had a few days leave at a port of call, and what a reception we got! We were showered with apples, grapes and cigarettes. Please remember me to all my cousins and pals and my brother in law Billy Benjamin and his wife". Gunner Tom Coulton, Fermor Road, says “I have been discharged from hospital and am now at a convalescent depot. It's a very big House owned by Sir W. Firth. Beautiful grounds, a swimming pool, tennis courts, bowling green, golf course, cricket pitch and football ground. We get plenty of entertainment in the evenings also. Ronald Gourley the blind pianist was here last week, and he was good too! Gdsn. W. Parsons (Burscough) writes, "We are still stationed the same place, and have been here for the past two years. But it is a very nice place, and there are lots of places to go when we get a night off. It is now half past ten and lights out''. OT John Webster, R.N. writes "This morning we had a big march past with the commodore taking the salute. I've never seen so much gold braid in all my life as I saw that morning. I went to Communion in the little Church. It was a very unusual sight, to me, to see so many sailors receiving the Holy Sacrament, but a very encouraging one. The other day we had to go through such a ceremony when we got paid. We had to line up, then shout our number out, put our pay book in our hat, then put our hats on a desk inside a chalked ring, taking the best part of ¾ of an hour all for 10/-. Next day they must have wanted to get our moneys worth out of us, for we were hardly ever still from 6a.m. until 9.30p.m." Dvr. Joe Wait says "I should be very disappointed if the N.Ls were discontinued. As you know I have been away for over three years, and I have never missed having the N.L. After returning from France, via Dunkirk, the N.Ls that I did’nt receive in France came safely back to Land and caught up with me. At present I am kept very busy doing office work. As I am now classed as an M.T. Clerk and my pay is equal to that of a full corporal, I am getting along very nicely. LAC Malcolm Parkinson (Moss Lane) gives a Canadian address but writes from America, with an American stamp on envelope. He says "I have once again changed my station. This time I have moved across the state border into Alabama where I am at an aerodrome just outside the city of ---. Having completed my Primary Training, I am now at a basic Flying Schoo1. I have got nearly 70 hours flying in and am doing my best to master this new type of training plane." It weighs 2 1/2 tons and is a fast monoplane. This is quite different to the last plane I was flying. We rise at 5.30 am. and finish about 8p.m. the day being spent on the flying line. I would be very glad if you would remember me to Roger Watson, Freddie Coupe and Flying Officer Dick Rymer. I have not the slightest idea where they are it is ages since I saw any of them". (Before you have finished this N.L. Malcolm you will have heard about two, and Dick Rymer is now home from the Gold Coast, has got married, and is now “somewhere in Scotland"). Here comes AC2 Freddy Coupe saying "I have just received an airgraph from Roger Watson. He is in Ceylon. It seems likely that I may leave this dear old island soon after I have completed my training.


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