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No: 298
February 1st 1946

My dear Boys and Girls,
I have had very few letters from you for the last fortnight,and I do hope that you are not growing tired of writing to me. You see, a letter to me means that you are sending news of yourself to all your old friends, for directly they see an extract from a letter of one of their village companions they say "I wonder what my old pal so-and-so has to say?" and they read it with interest. I know that there is not much to write about these days for peacetime soldiering is very tame. And remember that we also like to know what you are grumbling at, and in peace-time every soldier can find a few grumbles without much difficulty. At the present time the village is like a huge hospital, for almost every house has some one in bed ill. Poor Dr. Croft is run off his feet, or off his motor tyres, I suppose one should say nowadays. Luckily Dr. Herbert is better again, and back in harness, although he is not so robust looking as he used to be. As I write this, the telephone bell has rung. It is the RTO at Preston, and Philip Rigby is stranded at the Station there. It is 11pm. Luckily Tom Rutter is in the Rectory, so he volunteers to take the car, and he has just started off. So don't forget when stranded at Preston to go to the RTO's office and ring HB 230. Last week Arthur Harrison, Billy Benjamin and Jack Marsden all came by the same train arriving at Preston at 2.30am. Billy Benjamin telephoned his father who took the wagon, Arthur, via the RTO telephoned me, and I went with my car, Jack Marsden telephoned no-one and slept on the station until the first train. If all had gone to the RTO one vehicle could have gone, and ALL could have been brought home. With my love and all my prayers,ever your sincere old friend,

We regret to have to report the following deaths:-
Mrs. Dorothy Ashcroft, Holmeswood, grandmother of James Reed Ashcroft, who died on January 23rd and was buried at Tarleton. She was 68 years of age.
Mrs. Hugh Iddon, Church Road, two doors from Co-op, grandmother of Hugh Iddon who works for Mrs. James Howard. She was buried at Tarleton on Wednesday. She was 73 years of age.
Mr. Richard Harrison, Higher Lane, Holmes, died on January 27th and was buried at Tarleton last Thursday.
Mrs. Tongue, Hesketh Lane, mother of Mrs. J.A.Barron, died on Tuesday last and was buried at Tarleton on Friday.
Mrs. James Parkinson (better known as Fanny Foster, only daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Foster, newsagents) has presented her husband with twins - a boy and a girl. All are doing well.
The engagement has just been announced of John Waters, Boundary Lane, to Audrey Unsworth of Birkdale. Mr. and Mrs. Hart, South Road, Bretherton, celebrated their Golden Wedding day last week. Miss Robinson, who sold her drapery shop, plus house, in Hesketh Lane, last week, for £1,885, is taking a Boarding House in Colwyn Bay. Some people from Clitheroe district bought the shop. Mrs. John Gibbons (Bessie Sephton) put up her Hairdressers shop in Hesketh Lane for auction last Saturday, but it was withdrawn because the reserve price was not reached. Bidding went up to over £800. Mr. and Mrs. Joe Keane are now definitely leaving the Cock and Bottle, otherwise known as the Tarleton Hotel, at the end of March. Local rumour has it that Messrs. Thwaites,of Eanam Brewery, have received over 200 applications for the job, amongst them being those from a good many local people.
An Army wagon, and an NNF six-wheeler carrying gas masks, collided at Windgate last Friday morning. It was a very big smash up, and the Army wagon was cut nearly in two. No one was killed. The Rector gave a talk to the Hesketh Bank Church Young People's Fellowship last Tuesday. He took as his subject "Some Ghosts I have met", but he could not include the Rectory ghost as he has never had the pleasure of meeting her. That honour belongs to Jim Barron and others. The Rector's own explanation is that being a bachelor, and the ghost being a perfect lady, her sense of propriety will not allow her to impose herself upon him. Mrs. Cookson, Wesleyan Cottages, Church Road, is very ill indeed and Dr. Croft is trying to get Harry home from CMF to see her.
Other invalids are:- Mr. Arthur Sewell, Blackgate Lane, Mrs. Thomas Melling, Hesketh Lane, Mr. John Mayor, Church Road, Mr. Harry Higham, Coe Lane, Mr. Richard Thompson (Kelly), Church Road, Mrs. Marsden, Legh Arms, Mere Brow. Mr. Harry Southern, having reached the age limit, is retiring this year from the position of Caretaker of the Council School. Ted Barnish, Hoole, was demobbed last week, as was also Stanley Frazer, Mere Brow.

Tom Sutton (Holmeswood Hall, Mere Brow), Harry Price. Thomas Coulton, Mere Brow, has written to the Rector suggesting that a semi-circular stone seat be placed at the back of the lawn behind the present War Memorial, in memory of those Tarleton lads who have given their lives in the present war. Other suggestions for the same purpose will be welcome, for we must not let the names of these lads go un-recorded in the parish. While we give freely to the living, we cannot ignore the dead.

Cpt. Stanley Baldwin, RA, writes from CMF "This will most probably be my last letter to you from abroad, as after much thought and consideration I have decided to leave the Army with my age group (23). I am very pleased to say that I received a 'Mention in dispatches' at the end of November, so now I wear the oak leaf. It is very sad, in a sense, to see those with whom one has served for over six years, going off to all corners of Britain. The Army certainly does make one appreciate the other fellow. Regimental life is much different now, so many of the old chaps have gone home, and the break up has really started." Sgt. Dick Blundell, RA, writes from India Command "Our Padre left us last week for Japan. He hadn't been with us long, but that's the way it goes in the Army. We had just fixed up a hut into a Church and got it all spick and span, and now for the time being we are without a padre. I was at Holy Communion at 8 o'clock on Christmas morning, but I expect that you were all in bed then, as we were 5 1/2 hours in front of you, which would make it 2.30am in Tarleton. As usual the normal topic of the day is demob. Please remember me to all the 'locals' through the NL and anyone in India can find me at RHQ 55 Heavy Regiment, SECUNDERBAD." Dvr. Joe Wait writes from CMF "As I am in Group 26 I hope to be leaving here very soon, and to be home during February. When I come home I shall be looking for a small piece of land on which to build a bungalow, that is if I cannot get a house to rent. The NLs arrive very regularly and I am going to miss them very much when I get home. They have been by far the best means of keeping in touch with what is happening in our own village, and I am sure we shall all miss them." Stoker William Hudson, RN, writes from his ship at Portsmouth "I am hoping that it is not very long now before I shall be coming to see you in my civvy suit. I have been moving around quite a lot lately, and am just beginning to settle down. I would like you to remember me through the NL to PO Arthur Procter, whom I was with in Ceylon and who, I believe, is now in Singapore. Also to C.Wright, RAF, Chuck Wright, Bob Bond and all the lads in HM Forces." Pte. Arnold Bailey writes from Westcliffe-on-Sea "You can see from the address that I am back where I started from when I first came into the Army. I am finishing the last part of my V/Ms course. The lads out of this Unit are being moved to Farnborough. The food is much better here than it was at Luton. Every Sunday night the Rector here opens the Church School for us. You can get hot suppers, and they have a short service, and then a concert, and after the concert the Church workers bring tea and sandwiches round. This is done every Sunday night, so we have something to look forward to. Please remember me to Ken Dandy, Frank Taylor and Frank Foulds, in the News Letter." Mr. John Hornby, BEM writes "I am now settled down as Games and Physical Training Master at the Preston Technical College. I find the work much to my taste, and very similar to what I have done in the Royal Navy, having young men once again to deal with. Many thanks for the NLs which I have been receiving regularly."

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