No 9 General Hospital
My dearest Mother
Letter writing is difficult to achieve at present, and all letters are subject to a strict censorship. I daresay you have had some news of me from Mary, but the last few days I have not been able to write much to her.
We are at Rouen, where I expect we may stay for a time. I like the town very much, it is a busy place and the country round looks nice, though I haven’t been outside the town yet.
I am longing for news from home, and specially for news of the boys, but perhaps you also have no information. Our journey here via Havre was necessarily done in stages for various reasons but we haven’t fared badly. In Rouen at present we are billeted, but that I think is only for a day or two. I am with nice people and am developing my French on them to our mutual amusement. You know Rouen, I think, I had no idea it was such a big place.
You’ll find my letter very unsatisfactory, there is so much one is forbidden to discuss or mention, but I daresay as the war develops there will be less need for censorship. I am lucky to find two old Oxford friends in the same unit.
I know a large number of medical men who have come out, but of course we may not meet. I read a lot of French papers but miss The Times. Mary is to send me the weekly edition, but I don’t know whether it will reach me. She will come and stay with you later, I expect; I hope so.
I daresay in a few days all the Newport party will be back home, it has been a strange holiday for them.
I am very well indeed, and have benefitted from a few days in camp, while I really enjoy a certain amount of roughing it. Of course we are not likely as a base hospital to have hard times like the people near the front. We’ve got a few people here now who will benefit considerably and lose some fat on this campaign!
You may not hear from me very often. They don’t want the postal service very congested, but I’ll try and let you know I am well at intervals.
With very much love to all.