25th November 1915

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25th November 1915

Arthur is writing in the train on his way to the boat at Southampton, after 10 days of home leave; he is at a loss to know what to say to Dollie – he is still in a daze after their recent parting.

Arthur to Dollie

In the train, 2pm

… Sweet darling mine. I don’t know what to say – or how to say it. The full measure of my loss has not yet broken in upon me, and I am as one stunned & dazed, not knowing where to turn…

Be brave little brave heart. Be true to yourself and all will be well. Keep the home fire burning against the hour of my return.

And now my darling au revoir. I’ll do my utmost to get you a line from Boulogne. May God bless you & keep you safe & happy. I am with you always dear heart of mine …


25th November 1915

A second letter from Arthur – his boat from Folkestone has been delayed until 9.50pm so he and a few friends are dining at The Royal Pavilion Hotel.

Arthur to Dollie

Royal Pavilion Hotel,            Folkestone, 6.25pm

My own darling,

I’m sure you’ll be awfully surprised to find me writing from here. The explanation is simple. The boat is not sailing till 9.50. We had a good journey down, lunch not bad – and were on board by 3. They kept us there till six. The only movement we did was to change our berth to make way for the incoming mail boat.

At six, dear, they decided to let us on shore – voila. We made a beeline for this place – feeling quite hungry. They’ve promised us dinner at 7 – which we’re looking forward to. I am with Bobby Page & Morley – the Padre whom I met at Victoria. That little one is all my news.

I am wondering where you are, dear & what you’re doing … God bless you. But we must be brave, dear, as I know you are. I am longing for your next letter, I am longing for your news. I’ve written in the train & given it to the Pullman man to post. I’ll try & write from Boulogne but there’s sure to be an awful scrimmage & darkness. So you’ll know that “no news is good news”. God bless you once more & remember me to all…