1 July 1917 – Arrives in Malta and able to write home; meets up with other sailors James knew

DIARY: Arrived in Grand harbour Valetta at noon and tied up to Custom House steps. Coaled and watered.  Got leave at 5pm and went ashore to BRCS Club when met Eric Hall, WJ Miles from Alexandria and another Sparker.  Spent evening together.  Waygood on duty so unable to see him.

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We think BRCS stood for British Red Cross Society

Customs House Quay, Malta:

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customs-house-malta

1st July 1917

Sunday

Dear Mother & Father

Just a few lines in addition to note enclosed which had to be kept over until this mail as we left before it could be sent ashore. I have your letter of June 13th / 17 from Downham and two from Ellen.  She has kept me fairly posted with papers, but you must stop sending now as they won’t reach me before getting home.  There are 5 packages of June 19th, 9th, 13th, 17th and another whose date stamp I cannot read.  I have not had time to look over them as yet but will do so at earliest opportunity.

Glad Mother is having such a good time at Downham and Dad would have a good time round the farm. Glad the weather has been favourable but glad also that it has been many degrees cooler with you than with me.

Sorry Fanny was not successful but let both carry on at school as Ellen may show a great difference shortly and although there may be no apparent signs, you may be sure she is deriving some good. I am very thankful for the few extra years I was allowed at school and I should like all of us to have the same.  I understand your remarks about inquisitive people and I think your way of “piping them down”.  Do the same again by all means.  You know what I mean.

I will write Ellen by this mail and thank her for keeping me so well posted during your holiday.

I have been ashore this evening and luckily dropped across 3 old chums. One only I saw before but one was in from a trawler at whose base 3 or 4 particular friends of mine are stationed.  He can therefore give me news in exchange for news I have of other chaps.

It is very nice I can assure you and we have spent a really pleasant evening together. The trouble is I don’t think I shall be able to go again as matters stand now, but still it is a very nice change after a few months on board.

I must now drop a few lines to Ellen and must start at once or I shall be too late for this mail.

Hoping all are well.

Love and kisses to all

Your Loving Son

James

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