31 March 1917
Dear Father & Mother
I am now on immediate draft and have to get on the move at noon. They came on me suddenly as I expected just after Breakfast this morning. I passed the doctors immediately and they have just informed me I am off to Devonport to join the Lady Cory Wright. She is one of the marine auxiliary fleet and whether she is a Q boat or not I cannot say. I will let you know what she is as soon as I pick her up. Some of my chums say she is an armed liner & some say a Q boat. I am saying nothing until I have seen what she is. I hope she is an armed liner but whatever she is I shall take things smiling & do my best. I have a long train journey before me but I am getting quite used to travelling.
Smith has picked up a trawler running out of here but Davies has heard nothing up to now.
I got the parcel with cake etc last night but the washing only arrived this morning so that is very lucky. I must thank Dad very much for his excellent letter and his excellent parcelling up.
I am very sorry he is so ill but he will soon be well again, no doubt, if he takes things easier for a day or two. Sorry the men are so unreliable. They ought to take a turn in this regiment and they would waken up a bit then.
Give my best respect to Mrs Fraser & Father when they arrive.
Harry H has had scant time for training but he will be merry & bright wherever he is. The news came through about my transfer and the result was that it was noted. I take it that it was washed out but one never knows. I will take care of myself so don’t worry.
A chum has been down & tells me I am going via Salisbury & then change. Will write as soon as I know anything further.
Hoping Dad will soon be well again & that all the rest are quite well.
Best love to all
DIARY: Left Portsmouth at 1.30 for Devonport via Salisbury to join HMS Marine Fleet Auxiliary Lady Cory Wright. Stayed night in Devonport BarracksThe entrance to Devonport Barracks, today the home of HMS Drake: