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September 22nd 1915 - Letter from Mela Brown Constable to her fiancé, Lieutenant Cyril E Sladden

22nd September 1915
Correspondence From
Mela Brown Constable, Sisters' Quarters, University House, Edgbaston Park Road, Birmingham
Correspondence To
Lieutenant Cyril E Sladden, 9th Worcesters, 39th Brigade, 13th Division, c/o Cox & Co Agents, British Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Alexandria (redirected to Base Camp, Mudros West, Lemnos)
Relationship to Letter Addressee
Text of Letter

Sisters’ Quarters, University House

Edgbaston Park Road, Birmingham


Sept 22nd 1915


My own dear Cyril


I hope you will get all letters I am writing to you these days, it is so disappointing to me when you do not receive them.


It is early days yet to make plans and very difficult for you to look ahead but I am putting the matter before you now because letters take so long reaching you therefore possibly before I can get a reply to this it will be the middle of November or even later.


I want to ask your advice about signing on again after December.


It is an awfully difficult question to decide because we cannot see into the future, but I will put my case before you. If I keep well I would like to sign on for another 6 months, unless you wish otherwise or have plans to the contrary. I find night duty makes me feel pretty rotten so that if at the end of November where I shall return to day duty, I feel done up the question will arise whether or no to renew my contract.


If I were not engaged I would continue my work here even if I felt a bit fagged out, but what I am afraid of is that my health may get undermined and we have our future to think of.


So I put it to you whether you mind me going on here after December 31st, or would you like me to go home to Mother until such time as you come home and claim me for your own.


  1. have not had my letter in which I told you I have developed varicose veins. They are better than they were a little while back because I have been bandaging my legs with elastic bandages. The veins which have become varicosed are at the back of my knees and if they were to get bad would be very painful, and I do not want to have an operation to have them removed. It is the worst part of the leg to have them. Mind you, they are not very painful yet, and I do not have much standing on night duty so they may go on improving. I have given up wearing the bandages on night duty.


I was very well a short time back but do not feel so well just at present.


I could go home for 3 or 4 months and then take on nursing again after that should nurses still be required and should it be necessary to earn my own living.


I expect you will be having some leave by next year and I should like to be free when you are in England so as to see as much of you as possible.


I think Mother has learnt a lesson this time and that she will be nicer to me in future so that I could go home for a bit. I am very tired of knocking about. I could find plenty of war work to do in Boulogne.


Mother has not suggested all this to me, I have been turning it over in my mind for some little time now.


By the way, who do you think has been working in Boulogne? Captain MacKenzie. Mother did not see him, but she met a Colonel Berryman RAMC., whom we knew in India and he told her there had been 2 MacKenzies working under him, one of whom was Mac – otherwise Jack, a friend of mine!


I simply long for your letters but even they fail to satisfy me – I want you, yourself.


Au revoir – my dearest One. God bless you and have you in His Keeping. All my love and prayers are yours.


Ever your devoted


Letter Images
Type of Correspondence
Envelope containing 2 sheets of notepaper
Location of Document
Imperial War Museum
Record Office Reference