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June 21st 1917 - Letter from Arthur Sladden to his father, Julius Sladden

21st June 1917
Correspondence From
Arthur Sladden
Correspondence To
Julius Sladden, Seward House, Badsey
Relationship to Letter Addressee
Text of Letter



My dear Father


I will write tonight so that my letter may arrive on or about the 25th to send my very good wishes and congratulations to you on your 70th birthday. I have arranged to join with the girls and Jack in giving you a birthday present. Kathleen tells me the intention is to give you a screen which would be a nice addition to the house, and specially useful in cold weather.


I hope you are enjoying this good summer weather, it must be forcing the roses along well, and if there is sufficient rain and no pests there should be some good crops. They will be doubly needed I'm sure, it is evident that the submarine campaign is not yet really met at all adequately.


I am rather busy just now with a couple of reports lately called for, the provision of a new lab here is still in the balance and I continue to do my work at No 9, now the American Unit, so I get to know a good many of the Americans.


I don't think my move will be very long delayed now, we have with us now Lieutenant-Colonel Martin who in civil life is Director of the Lister Institute in London. He will take over the work when I go, probably with one or more assistants, and no doubt will be in a position to develop if further. In the meantime he is looking round, seeing our methods here and lending a hand whenever asked.


I sent Cyril's letter on to George. I found the account of the taking of Kut very readable with the aid of the sketch map. I wonder what plans are being developed for that force when the hot weather passes, the Russian situation renders their position very different to expectations. It is to be hoped that the new King of Greece won't act up to his first manifesto, it read like a piece of calculated impudence; but perhaps it was writ sarcastic, or just a bit of bravado.


I still hope to get some leave before very long but one cannot count on it nowadays unfortunately. It is a pity we haven't a couple of Channel Tunnels in going order, the authorities would have less excuse for holding up leave. But for a great proportion of the army out here a reasonable certainty of leave every six months would make an enormous difference when viewing the possibility of a long war, at present many have to wait over a year. The professional soldier is apt to speak of leave as if it were a most gracious privilege (though if he's in a position to get the same he doesn't refuse!) whereas in a war like this it should be regarded as a necessity like food or munitions, only a trifle easier to postpone in emergency.


With love to all, and hoping that you'll keep health and strength and good spirits to celebrate many anniversaries.


From your affectionate son


Letter Images
Type of Correspondence
Envelope containing 3 sheets of notepaper
Location of Document
Worcestershire Archive and Archaeology Service
Record Office Reference