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February 18th 1915 - Letter from Kathleen Sladden to her mother, Eugénie Sladden

18th February 1915
Correspondence From
Kathleen Sladden, 12 Charleville Circus, Sydenham
Correspondence To
Eugénie Sladden, Seward House, Badsey
Relationship to Letter Addressee
Text of Letter

12 Charleville Circus
Sydenham SE

Feb 18 1915

My dear Mother

We have been wondering how you are and hoping you are up and about again by now. Perhaps there may be a letter tonight from home. I would have written yesterday but Jack was writing, however after taking up his pen at 10.15 he put it down in desperation about 10.30 and said he simply could not write a letter, he hadn’t a thing to say! It was too late for me to start then, so it had to wait. He is out now and I will write having a spare half-hour; if he writes too they can go together!

You really have chosen an excellent time of year for staying in bed for the weather has been awful. It was sunny today for a little time in the middle of the day but rained at both ends, although no so much as yesterday. I think everyone has influenza everywhere; one of our staff was away on Monday with what was said to be that but proved to be measles next day. As she is form-mistress of the youngest form, children of ten and less, the prospects for the next few weeks are cheerful. I hope we shall not get too many cases. We may escape as she was not at school after Friday.

I wonder if Mary and Ethel got over to Birmingham today and how they found Mela. What a pity she could not see Cecil while he was over. I expect you are enjoying having Mary with you. How much longer is she staying?

One of our staff whose brother in the London Scottish has been over on leave has brought various tales to school since she has seen him. He seems to have been chiefly occupied with the Quartermaster’s Department, seeing about supplies and has been a great deal at St Ouen where General French has his headquarters. So he has constantly seen French, Joffre (Kitchener, too, I think) and saw Lord Roberts when he was there. He spoke at the funeral of Lord Roberts and how wonderfully impressive it was especially when just at the moment the cortège set off, a most perfect rainbow appeared all across the sky. It seems to have struck everyone there very much and cheered them all as an emblem of hope.

I wonder what attempts the Germans will be making now to carry out their threats. I suppose we must expect a certain amount of losses but hope they will not be very great. The news from the Eastern Theatre of War is not at all good but I hope the Russians have not got themselves well established in strong positions and will be able to prevent any advance of the Germans upon railways as places of strategic importance. Meanwhile in a small way the French seem to be doing well. I see Captain Tanner’s name again mentioned in despatches; I also noticed young George Malconn, but we simply cannot look all through and would hardly notice names of slight acquaintances among so many.

Tell May I hope the removal of the gland will not give her much trouble. I am sorry the bunion is being troublesome too. As she says, these minor ailments are a great nuisance. Have you heard any more rumours about “the Beeches” or was that only a myth after all? By the bye, the house next door, No 10, is let. They are doing painting etc and I suppose the people will move in in March. I hear through Mrs Horsman that it is an old lady moving up from Lawrie Park Road but she did not tell us her name. I have no doubt I shall soon know all about them or what is the use of a housekeeper and tradesmen’s men. The amount of news which comes with the meat would send up the hills if it were charged for.

I am glad you heard from George at last on Monday. He told us he was leaving to shoe a horse although he will no have time to learn to make the shoes which is a longer business. It will be useful to him in the transport work I expect. I am glad he seems quite well again now. He seemed quite himself when I saw him last.

It is nearly bed-time so I will end, with much love, your affectionate daughter, Kathleen.

PS – I suppose Ethel has no eggs to spare as none have turned up.

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