Oldfield letter: 23.12.39

A note on the letters. The transcripts may include abbreviations or spelling inconsistencies and errors. We have chosen to transcribe the letters as they appear so that they are an accurate reflection of John Oldfield’s style and personality. We have also included his original page numbering. Where language is used that we would deem offensive, those words have been replaced with XXX.

1997-37-7-4-10 Headquarters, 5th Division. B.E.F
ON ACTIVE SERVICE

To Mrs and Mrs W. and Miss K Oldfield
P.S So pleased to hear about Pikey ( George Pyman has enlisted in the R.A.S.C. – as a lorry – driver -) Jolly good show.
No. 4

Friday Evening.
My dear Mums, Daddy & Jum.
First of all, Thank you so much for the splendid parcel which arrived in perfect condition yesterday afternoon, and everything had travelled excellently. It was really absolutely first – class- the cake looks delicious and I am keeping it for Christmas day, and the pullover is a dashing success, fits very well and is beautifully warm- in fact I am wearing it now. Thank you both very much indeed. Also for the very ‘’sporty’’ braces which are quite the best I’ve ever seen, the socks, chocolate, cigarettes-toffees, drawing things – in fact everything was just what I wanted and was very pleased to get. Thank you all again very much indeed. Also you, mum & daddy for, the brief-case which is absolutely invaluable, but I do think I ought to pay for it myself.
I sent off a small ‘family’ present yesterday so hope you may have got it by the time you read this. I don’t know whether it will be of any use and it seems really rather a poorish sort of present but the best I could find in a very brief visit to the town. It might come in handy at the Point to Point I think. I have just got
2.
Half a dozen handkerchiefs from York House which are very nice and most useful, and Margaret Lewis sent me a book by Bateman in a box with a picture exactly like Badger – which was very sweet of her.
This must only be a short letter, I’m afraid and it’s almost time for dinner, but I feel I must write and let you know Pig Boy’s hamper had perched up safe and sound.
On Sunday, the G.W.Chief (and wife) and I are visiting the Brigade and then the Regiment and so at long last I shall see Robert at Bde, and Derry & Ronnie with the Regiment am looking forward to it. Yesterday, the General and I had lunch – The most terrific one – with general borug (a French General who was attached to H.M (the King) for the whole of the tour) and his A.R.C. oysters, champagne and everything else.
Before I forget there are one or two things I would like sent out if you can manage it – my Green fore raft, my sheepskin waistcoat, & I wonder if you could buy me a Wodehouse omnibus and get it from my act, I’m sorry to keep bothering you.
Re. the horse. Coper, Jum. I thought you would remember – we met him at the bridge that Friday with the General, but it doesn’t really matter. Well, my dear, I must stop. Will write to- morrow and answer all your letters properly – Thank you again – all of you very much indeed for the parcel, and all the little ‘’dawgs’’ for their Christmas card.
My love and a happy Christmas, Yours ever, Johnnie J.B.Oldfield

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