Oldfield letter: 16.2.42

Please note: this letter contains language ‘of its time’ that we consider offensive.  These words have been replaced with XXX.

Mrs R. Murray Garside, Sandsend, nr Whitby                    Capt JB.Oldfield
“C” Company.
Yorks 5th Bn. The Green Howards,
Middle East Forces.

Feb. 16. 42.

My dearest M.

I listened last night to Mr. Churchill’s grim speech and the announcement of the fall of Singapore and want to write to tell you not to worry more than you need as I feel sure Richard will be alright. You must have had a most anxious time lately not hearing from him but news from the East must be very spasmodic, and I feel sure Richard will be safe. After all they are not likely to keep the Navy idle on land at times like that and he will be giving the little XXX XXX XXX beggars something to be going on with. So keep your chin up and

[page 2] You’ll hear from him soon. I wish I could think as cheerfully as that of David Nunneley in the Gordons – a great friend of mine at the R. M.C. who joined his regiment out there straight away, and so far as I know he’s still there.

I think the P.M’s speech was one of the finest I have ever heard – straight and honest and glossing over none of the unpleasant facts we have to face, and yet very heartening. He does one a power of good.

As you know we are at last doing a bit of proper soldiering and enjoying life thoroughly. We have done a lot of patrolling lately and up to a few days ago things were very gentlemanly. At the moment things are a bit more active and this time he’ll get it good and strong. There have been times when we have been caught with

[page 3] Our trousers down and sometimes even with them tied round the ankles, but this time lets hope it’s different as I think it will be. We have the wireless and all in the unique position of forecasting the news bulletins – or our part of them – before the wireless. I cannot say where I am but think you will know – and hope Rommel doesn’t. He’s a chap worth beating and damn clever. Feeling very fit and cheerful and enjoying life thoroughly. At the moment I am writing this in my dug-out and in my jodhpurs wh. always makes me very homesick. Be a good gal Bid and please don’t worry, I’m sure you have no need to.

Godbless and my love,
J.B. Oldfield