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Tarleton Rectory, Preston
May 31st 1945

My dear Boys and. Girls,
This has been quite a hectic week for Tarleton. Herbert Nutter, who has been a P-o-W. in Germany for the past five years arrived home, being the last of our own village lads to be freed. So now we have Cliff Hambilton, Nick Dewhurst, Fred Croft, Herbert Nutter, and our old friend Aubrey Smith, all at home. This made our Friday evening alfresco dance a really star turn. All the village turned out to do honour to our long lost lads. However, wait until you all get home, and then we really will have a reception for you which will be well worth writing home about.
Knowing me as you do you will also know that I have been 'in the thick of it', up to my neck in work - so don't expect a long letter this week.
With my love, my prayers and my blessing,
ever your sincere friend,

Herbert Nutter, P-o-W since Dunkirk arrived home safely on Thursday night. He looks very fit and well.
On Friday night the Welcome and Welfare Committee (Men's Effort), organised a huge alfresco dance in the School Playground. All round the yard were Venetian masts carrying electric cable with scores of coloured electric lights. Beneath they also carried much bunting. The rector's large stage was used as the Bandstand. The playground was flood lit. The large room in the school was used for refreshments. All Tarleton turned out and
came to the dance. Fancy Dress optional. Prizes, presented to winners by Mrs. Harry Hague, of Burscough, for most patriotic costumes. First won by Sallie Baybutt - Britannia. Second won by Annie Hunter - America. Third by Bunty Pilkington - Victory. Cliff Hambilton, Herbert Nutter, Nick Dewhurst, Aubrey Smith - all just released from P.O.W. camps in Germany were present and received a great ovation, and were welcomed back by the rector. An evening never to be forgotten.
Johnson's (Bushell. Banks) threshing machine caught fire at Burscough last week. It burnt the curtains and also the coat of the workers, one of whom was Dick Wright, Haig avenue.
The infant son of Mr. and Mrs. (nee Hannah Bamber) Stanley Johnson was christened on Sunday in Tarleton Parish Church with the names Michael Norman.
Mr. Robert Rigby, of the Toll Bar, was taken suddenly ill on Friday morning, was rushed to Preston Infirmary where he underwent an operation, seemed to rally, but had a relapse and died on Saturday afternoon. He was buried yesterday (Wednesday), in Tarleton Churchyard, the service being taken by the rector and Mr Watkins, the rector of Hoole.

ON LEAVE: Tom Southworth; Robert Latham; Ronnie Cooke All from B.L.A. Also Jimmy Monaghan; Jimmy Southern, Tom Walsh.
Mrs. Peters, now of Knutsford, wife of Mr. I.T. Peters, who at the beginning of the war was Headmaster of our Church Schools, has presented her husband with a daughter.
Mr and Mrs James Forshaw have moved from the shop into their new home in Blackgate Lane - next to Douglas's. Mrs. Forshaw's sister and her husband (Mr. and Mrs. Whittle) have come from Accrington to live over the shop.
Mr. Albert Rawsthorne, Mount Pleasant, Sollom, was operated upon for appendicitis in Preston Infirmary last week. He got well over the operation, then had a relapse. He died on Sunday afternoon.

Gunner Arthur Harrison writes from B.L.A. "We are very busy cleaning and painting the guns. We had a very poor Victory night as we were in the middle of a corn field. Now we are about 20 miles from Bremen in a village called Zeven. We are billeted in a big empty house, but some are in the Station, and our dining hall is one of the Waiting Rooms. I hope to be home for good by Christmas as my group is No. 24."
Marine Leslie Hodson writes from B.L.A. "After having had a very good leave I am back with the B.L.A., but I hope to be seeing you all again soon. It was good to get home for a few days and to find everyone O.K. I have not written to you much since I came back from the far east, and this is the only chance I have had of really getting down to it."
L/CpI Tommy Burns writes from C.M.F. "At the present moment it is Whitsunday, I am on Guard, and the time is dragging. We are stationed right on the sea front and get a lot of bathing, especially in the afternoons. Still we are very busy. Our work starts about ten in the morning, then a short spell of nothing, and then, round about five or six at night work begins again and goes on until about seven in the morning. It is very rarely that our drivers get their meals at the same time."
Dvr. Billy Parkinson writes from B.L.A. "I am still in Germany stationed in a little village called PULS, between Hamburg and Kiel. During my recent travels I have seen many acts of Nazi cruelty that one would never have believed could happen in modern times. I was stationed at Hamburg for two or three days but left on VE Day on route for Denmark, but something went wrong and we haven't got any further than here. As regards the greatest moment of all, 'demobbing' I can expect to be in for some time yet, being only group 33, but as regards the East I have the qualifications for missing that."
Driver Billy Whittle writes from B.L.A. "If Mary Ascroft oversees the N.L. please convey my congratulation's to her. I am two miles from what was the town of Xanton. I have been billeted in the ruins of Kleve and Goch, If any of the village lads are ever up here tell them to look for 1259 on the trucks. You can bet they will find me for everybody in the company knows 'the Rooky', or better still 'the Lancashire Rooky'. Although I have been with this coy. 'outfit' for nearly six months I still get lectures by the old 8th Army veterans, and some of the campaigns they lecture on are, in my opinion, very exaggerated. Our trucks have a camel painted on them - adopted from the middle east."
Leading Seaman Jimmy Latham writes from H.M.S. Ganges "I thought once that I should be very close to the finish for the Kiel Canal medal, but the authorities cancelled the job so that I could not compete. John Hornby, I see in the N.L. is very optimistic about being the winner. This address should be familiar to you
because it is the one to which you sent my first N.L. to me." (I know your ship, personally, Jimmy, because when Ken Dandy was in hospital on her I went to visit him - he had gone. It may seem strange to those "who don't know" her firm attachment to her native land, but even then she was anchored off Harwich, from which port they sent a cutter - I think that is what you call it - to take me aboard. And I saluted the Quarterdeck!!)
Wren Hilda Wickham writes from H.Q., S.E.A.C. "Six months have passed since I left England to come overseas, and the N.Ls have followed me. You may like to know a little about my brothers. Wyke, the eldest is in Kota-Kota, Nyasaland, back in his civilian job of Colonial Administration, after spending 3 years in the Army in E. Africa. Harrie, the second, is still at Liverpool University and takes his finals in Medicine in June. Tom, the youngest is over 6 ft. tall, and is a Segt-Navigator in the R.A.F., and before VE Day was doing bombing ops on the Continent."
LAC Charlie Wright (Tabby Nook) writes from S.E.A.C. "We have not finished celebrating VE Day here, although we had two days holiday, for next Sunday we are having a Victory dinner, which I think will bring them to an end. Then I suppose we shall have to get down to this job out here and get it over and done with as soon as possible."
L/MM Bill Harrison (Holmes), writes from his home port "I met Harry Alty of Heskcth Lane, in Portsmouth Barracks a week or two ago. I am not expecting to be here long; I daresay I'll get a draft to the Pacific, anyway that seems to be the place where most of the lads are going. Remember me to my cousin Walter Ascroft and my uncle Tom Harrison. I wish them both a speedy return."
L/Sergt Tom Tindsley writes from B.L.A.. "I am still working a wireless set, doing the same hours, in shifts, as I did in action, so I am just as busy now as I was when in action. We are in a beautiful district among the lakes of North Germany at a little place called Plon, a few miles south of Kiel. Please
give my kindest regards to all in the Forces, especially those in the Far East."
Dvr. Robert Bond writes from B.L.A. "It is Sunday afternoon and it is a lovely day. If I could swim I would be in the bathing pool right now. Actually it is a lake and some lovely bathing beauties go down to it. I have seen Charlie Wright (Chuck) and we enjoyed a short chat of about two hours. It is great to see someone you really know. My best regards to Charlie Wright (Tabby Nook), Billy Hudson, and all the boys and girls."

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