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Letters from soldiers WWII
November 23rd 1942

My Dear Boys and Girls,
First of all I must apologise for the delay in sending out last week’s letter. The fault certainly does not lie at my door, for I sent the script off to be duplicated in very good time. The firm to which I send the script each week inform me that they had a very large Government Order in which demanded priority. I know how eagerly you all look forward to receiving the N.L., and so many thank me for its 'unfailing regularity', and I do try my best to get it out punctually, even sitting up till turned midnight to get it written up in time for the post. However, there we are. One last word. Don't forget to remember in your prayers those many of our lads who are bearing the burden and heat of the day in Northern Africa, and also those even at this moment braving the hidden dangers of the sea in order to give us our food and our lads their armaments.
With my love and my prayers,
ever your affectionate friend,

Ellen Alty, of Croston, sister to Mrs. John Ball Wesley Cottages was married on Saturday at Croston Parish Church, to Robert Watson. Robert joined up with Lewis Clark and was in the same Company for some considerable time. John Caunce, Herbert Parkinson, (Blackgate Lane) and Arthur Barron, Wesley Cottages, all join up on Thursday. George Barker, (Husband of Edie Iddon), has joined up. Philip Barron and Geofrey Wignall have both had their medicals. Reggie Johnson has also passed his medical. Murial Iddon has had to go back into Preston Infirmary. Mr Bentham, Kearsley Ave. is in Rainhill with mental trouble. Mr and Mrs. Arthur Dandy held a whist drive in Schools on Friday evening on behalf of N.L. fund and raised £30. The Schools were packed. William Harrison, Kearsley Ave. (brother of Jimmy) has been called up. Mrs. Stazicker raffled some handkerchiefs which Mrs. Timperly had given for the N.L. Fund, and made 18/8. Hugh Melling is marrying Jennny Slinger on his next leave. Hugh, who is in the R.A.F. is somewhere along the east coast. A representative Committee has been formed to raise the £300 required to drain the new extension to Churchyard and otherwise prepare it for burials. It consists of, the rector, (chairman) Mr. J. Bailey and Mr. Arthur Dandy (Churchwardens); Mr. George Spencer, junr. Mr. John Parkinson, Mr. Tom. Harrison (Jumps Farm, Mere Brow) ; Mr. James Sutton, (Tarleton Methodists); Mr. Harry Jackson (Hesketh Lane Methodists); Mr. Nicholas Dandy, Holmes Chapel; Mr. James Taylor of J. & T. Taylor, (Mere Brow Methodists) and Mr. McCarthy, Roman Catholics. Pte. Tom Rigby, who is in India, has been ill in hospital with fever and a septic finger, but by this time should be out and about again. Leslie Orritt, Hoole, joins up this week. Jimmy Coulton R.N. of Walmer Bridge, has been wounded in the stomach. Will give fuller report next week. Richard Watson, who married Maggie Carr of Walmer Bridge was taken prisoner of war at Dunkirk, sent to prison camp in Italy, escaped from there and has arrived home in WaImer Bridge. Engineer Officer Johnny Hague has been given a commission in the Royal Navy. He is now Sub- lieutenant John Hague, R.N.R. On leave, Dvr. Sidney Ball, Dvr. Harry Price, Sub Lieut. J. Hague, on receiving Commission; LAC Tom Parkinson; P/E.R.M. Dick Burns, R.N., Gdsn. George Burns still at home with broken collar bone.

Two airgraphs from Marine Kenneth Nicholson saying amongst other things, Well, I have still to see a method of news to beat yours. It certainly is grand to hear the lads, when I receive it say “ and who is on leave this week.“ Give all my chums wherever they may be my best wishes for Christmas and the New Year. Congratulations to all the boys who have been promoted. Give my best wishes to Stan Quinlan and Hugh and Alf Rowland.'' The rector's nephew Eddie (the Rev. E.J. Force C.F.) who is an Army Padre in the M.E.F. sends an airgraph with this, "I am now back at a Base job with a very large area to cover and very few facilities for getting about. I have now travelled this country from end to end, and though there may be places as dismal as this I have never seen worse. Sandstorms every other day, are a misery, but I am getting used to them. We had the Bishop in Jerusalem here last night for a Confirmation. It was a magnificent service and the Church was packed and 50 were confirmed”. Dvr. Fred Taylor, Hesketh Lane, writes “Well rector, you will be surprised to hear that I am on board ship, I can’t say where. Now is the time for me to look out for the N.L. They will be doubly welcome now. Please remember me to all the boys and girls from Tarleton and H.B. Sgt Ernie Ball writes "Herewith a few lines from the land of "Haggis, wind and rain". I noticed in one of your N.Ls that Ian, your nephew was on the high seas. I didn't even know that he had joined up. Anyhow, please remember me to him in one of your future N.Ls. They are mostly gaelic people here and speak it, so if you hear someone speaking in that foreign lingo when I get my next leave, don’t think I have been taken by the 'bats' ." O.S. Jimmy Latham, Moss Lane says, "As the exams are now gone I can begin corresponding again. I have done very well in passing out with 577 marks out of a possible 600 on seamanship and 93 per cent in gunnery, getting second place in both. Please remember me to all my friends in the village especially to Raymond and Fred Coupe and Tom and Hubert Tindsley." L/cpl. Tom Tindsley says, "It is just over twelve months ago since I first arrived at this place and I am beginning to consider myself almost a native. We are still kept pretty busy here for there is always plenty of work to be done in maintaining an armoured Unit. Remember me to all the boys in the N.L. and I should like to return the greetings to Jim Latham who is in the Navy. I hope he has settled down to Service Life by now, Greeting also to my cousin Hubert and to George Almond, both in the Middle East. Dvr. Dick Taylor writes, "Just a line to let you know that I am on the move again. As I like to receive the N,L, as soon as possible I thought I would be on the safe side and drop you a line. We went to a very impressive Armistice Service this morning at the Parish Church. Afterwards I came to the above address from ----,which I was very sorry to leave, especially as I left my best Army pal behind," Miss Frances Taplin of London, who is Gdsn Jack Moss's fiancee writes, "Thanks very much for being so very kind in sending me the N.L. which I enjoy reading very much. I wondered whether the bells of your Church were rung on Sunday. (Yes, Frances, all eight bells peeled out and sounded very fine). There were not any rung in our district because they have been damaged in the blitz, and the bells of Southwark Cathedral, which is five minutes walk from my home, have been taken down for the duration. I have had a letter from Jack with his address where to send letters to, so I will write it down for you when I have finished this letter." (Thank you, Frances, I pray, with you, that Jack may return safely.) Airman David Hanson, R.A.F. says "This life is suiting me very well and I have no regrets for joining the R.A.F. Will you please remember me to Jimmy Harrison in your next N.L. We have finished the biggest weight of our foot drill and are just beginning Morse in earnest." Sergeant Nick Dewhurst, Scots Guards, writes "We have had special courses for Officers only and I have been instructing them. We started with our own Officers, and have now gone on to Officers of the Line Regiments. "Well, sir, I saw in the N.L. that Bob Hull had been visiting me, but unfortunately I was on draft leave. Please pass this on to Bob "If you are around this district, Bob, please give me a call or let me know where you are, and I will pay you a visit. I am still here at ---- and am not proceeding on draft, Bob." I saw Harry Crook last week, I didn‘t get a chance to speak to him as he was out for a run with his squad.” (And what about Harry sending the Rector a letter in the near future. I have not heard from you Harry, for quite a long time.) Company Sergeant Major Edgar Wait, R.A.S.C. writes "You will see that I have been promoted to Coy. Sgt. Major, I wrote to tell you the good news, but somehow I think that you must not have received the letter, (Quite right, Edgar, this is the first I have heard of it. I have received no letter from you for quite a long time, and thought that you must have forgotten me) "My wife is staying with me here which makes soldiering a real pleasure.“ Gunner John Rimmer (Hesketh Lane) says 'Please thank the Bowling Club for the gift received, as I do not know their address. (Many others also desire the rector to thank the Bowling Club for their gifts, because they do not know to whom else to write.) Pte. F. Hewitson, Longton, writes, "I am now on my way to join the rest of your far flung family overseas, and am hoping of course, to meet some of the lads I know. Life on Board is very different from in barracks, and it takes me all my time to find my way about. The last letter I had before leaving barracks was an N.L. and I am wondering whether the next will be one also. I should like to send my best regards to all my cousins, and to Ernie Ball, George Barker and Harold Aspey. I haven't seen any of them for a long time, but who knows? I send my best wishes to you and to Miss Webster for preparing and dispatching our happy little epistle." Pte. Ronnie Sergeant says, "It hardly seems fair that some men have done so much and I so little after 2½ years in the Army, but perhaps I shall soon be with them out there. I would be very pleased if you would convey my best wishes to my cousins and brothers-in-law who are serving in the Forces and are in receipt of the N.L."


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