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May 24th 1918 - Letter from George Sladden to his father, Julius Sladden

24th May 1918
Correspondence From
George Sladden, BEF
Correspondence To
Julius Sladden, Seward House, Badsey
Relationship to Letter Addressee
Text of Letter


24 May 1918

My dear Father

Having survived a week or so of fierce heat, two tremendous storms and a perfectly colossal bombing (during which the bombs fell more or less like thunder rain) I find an ordinary moist evening, with no extremes of climate and the prospect of a quiet night very favourable for correspondence. The bombing was on the night after the London raid. I imagine Fritz was tired after long journeys on the previous night and so concentrated on the forward area by way of resting himself. We all lay very flat on the ground under our bivouacs and felt exquisitely unhappy; but when it was all over we had suffered no damage at all except to our nerves! Daylight showed a most extensive string of craters all round us; the way we had been missed was so beautiful to contemplate that it almost made up for the “wind-up” of the night.

But fortune can seldom smile for long. As if by perversity, the next day a very casual spasm of shelling robbed me of my senior corporal, Banks, a very good pal and an absolute right-hand man. He is very badly wounded and has had to have a leg amputated. The latest news we had of him before he was evacuated to the Base was that he was probably out of danger; which is one comfort anyway. We shall miss him very much: he was one of my mess of four which had remained intact, with such remarkable good luck, for two years. One feels keenly the break-up of such an old-standing association.

Did I tell you that I had a sort of three days holiday about a fortnight ago? I went down to the Base to draw some remounts; the CO was getting a new charger and he was afraid that the label might get swapped over to another horse on the train (such things do occur!) so he sent me down to draw on the spot and bring up by road. Had a very nice little jaunt; a break in the routine, too, is always welcome. I felt very much inclined to lengthen the return journey by one day, but resisted the temptation.

The Sinn Fein arrests are very startling. I sincerely hope that there is very definite and undeniable proof of treasonable practices. That, combined with a firm offer of Home Rule on a federal basis ought to settle the Irish difficulty. I don’t think the arrests would be so numerous unless the proofs were very good. I have seen it hinted that the USA Secret Service has again been instrumental in discovering German intrigue. That Secret Service must be most unpopular with the German Chancelleries.

Love to all from


Letter Images
Type of Correspondence
Envelope containing 2 sheets of notepaper
Location of Document
Worcestershire Archive and Archaeology Service
Record Office Reference