14 Nov 1916
My dear Father
We are enjoying a most delightful streak of good weather, which is very welcome after the heavy rains of this autumn. And I hear that there has been the usual consequence of a successful advance. We have not had any very definite news yet, but I hear that we have got Beaumont Hamel and St Pierre Divion and about 4000 prisoners. The prisoners that we take in these affairs are the really gratifying feature in the attacks. Added to the other German casualties I feel sure they must make their total casualties for each operation heavier than ours. When the attacking side can show the smaller list of casualties I think they may fairly claim that there is nothing wrong with their strategy or tactics.
I have noticed a great tendency in many newspapers lately to crab the Somme operations. Very unjustifiable I think; especially in view of the light of Verdun debacle which, in itself, would be enough to justify the whole of the Somme effort.
I suppose you have not heard any news of Cyril since he went up river? Though I daresay they have improved communications there so much that mails will not take so long to come through as they used to.
I was interested and rather surprised, too, to hear of Mrs B C’s visit to Badsey. Though she was very cordial to me when she came to see me at Wimereux. I daresay she soon repented of her first strange outburst.
I have just received your letter of Nov 11th and a letter from Jack came through at the same time. I am very glad indeed to hear that the operation on Mrs Horsman has gone so well. Kathleen’s mind will be very much relieved.
I am afraid that I shall not see my god-daughter this year. Leave is going very slowly and there are a large number of men who have been out here over a year without leave. A good many were away at the Base, recovering from wounds or sickness when leave was last running so I find quite a formidable list of men due to go before me.
St Martin’s little summer has turned into St Martin’s little winter; but it is beautifully clear and steady weather. Long may it continue.
I see that “The Times” is raising its price. I am hardly surprised; and I expect some of the halfpenny papers will have to sell at a penny soon. I expect the “Weekly Times” is on its way now. I should miss that very much if ever it miscarried, for I make up from it from the days (by no means few in number) when no papers come in.
I must write to Jack this evening so I will close this.
Love to all from