Part 1 The Blue Cockade
Chapter 3 Guarding England – spring
on guard in Southampton and Gosport, failing a chance at commission, reversion to Private, the beginnings of Intelligence.
70th Dorset, March to June 1941
Southbourne, Dorset (then in Hampshire) - ‘D’ company of the 70th Battalion of the Dorset Regiment (Corporal)
Southampton – from c.10th March 1941, ‘D’ company, 70th Dorsets (Corporal)
On 10th April 1941 he went before the O.C.T.U. (Officer Cadet Training Unit) Board in an unsuccessful attempt to gain a commission.
From Sunday 18th May to Saturday 24th May 1941 Dick attended the 4th Division Intelligence Course at HQ 4th Div. in Winchester.
On 21st May 1941 his rank as full Corporal was confirmed.
Fort Brockhurst, Gosport, Hampshire – from end of May/beginning of June 1941 (reverted to Private at his own request On 7th June 1941)
Mechanical Transport section, HQ Company, 70th Dorsets for rest of June 1941.
12th March 1941 – Southampton
He kept us waiting for 1½ hours and then spoke for 10 mins. I suppose it’s a C.O.’s privilege rather like a woman’s….
Southampton ‘41- Air Raids in Southampton
the sirens haven’t gone. Really rather odd - I expect Jerry’s stocktaking … the raids lately have been almost continuous and pretty vicious.
21st March 1941 – Bombs every night
I don’t mind bombs but I can’t tolerate shelters. Spending hours in shelters is enough to make anyone fed up.
24th March 1941 – Lost at the docks
I went to sleep and had to get out at the Docks!..had no idea of the way back .. wandered for hours but eventually made it.
27th March 1941 – Oh, for my Student days!
I write so seldom now I can hardly hold a pen! By the time I get out of the Army I will be so dull I shall have to keep pigs or something
31st March 1941 – THB Inoculation
This morning I was inoculated with T.H.B. (i.e. the worst one) and can't move my left arm. I expect I'll be on my back by tomorrow.
9th April 1941 – The OCTU Board
I should have been on leave from ‘After Duty’ on Tuesday. I only wanted about 2 hours to go! The O.C. told me I wouldn't be able to
22nd April 1941 – Failing the OCTU Board
the Board failed me because I'd done too much service on P.T. and couldn’t therefore have enough military knowledge! I was mad when I heard
25th April 1941 – The Quartermaster
I've been selected to attend the 4th Division Intelligence Course at HQ 4th Div. wherever that may be.
13th May 1941 – In a hut on the Common, Southampton
They're very good at this place (Church Army) - the old boy has just come round with free fags - two for every one in the place.
15th May 1941 – Saving 10 shillings a week
I've seen the pay clerk and am only going to draw 25 shillings from this week onwards. That will be saving 10 shillings a week
21st May 1941 – Winchester Intelligence Course
very interesting to a bloke who knows sweet ---- all about Intelligence. I don’t suppose I’ll know much more when I’ve finished
27th May 1941 – Detention guard on Southampton Common
nine prisoners – all right, unless a prisoner escapes, in which case I shall be ruined. But I’ll bayonet the b-----, if I catch him!
30th May 1941 – Moving to Gosport
I'll always like the Army for one thing, - it's shown me how much I do miss you - more than I ever dreamed. I love you such a terrible lot
6th June 1941 - Fort Brockhurst, Gosport
I’m still on Ord. Sergeant, and consequently don't have one minute to spare all day. I'm up at 5.30 and don't get to bed before eleven
9th June 1941 – Private Williams
I told the Old Man I'd sooner serve as a Mess Orderly in a fighting unit than a Sergeant-Major in this. That shook ‘ee!
18th June 2011 – Out to lunch
Beachcombing in Tahiti is my true métier! What about it, after I get out...? You'd have to wear a sarong…
June ‘41 – The Paras
Fritz will be bottled up in another couple of months. I'll be home for Christmas, and it won't be leave! What a time we'll have then.
People in Chapter 3 Guarding England – spring :
Barbara Chalkley (“Chotie”), Burgess, Capt., Eric (Kesler?), Frank (Monica’s boyfriend), George, Holloway (Cpl), John, Michael, Miles (Major), Monica, Rendall, Thomas (Lt), Walters (2nd Lt)
Books mentioned in Chapter 3:
‘The Garden of Allah’ by Hitchins
‘I'll tell you Everything’ by Priestley - “although very light & sometimes puerile, was really rather good”
“Rebecca” by Daphne du Maurier
“The Grapes of Wrath” by Steinbeck – “I read it when first published, but it's all I could get and it's worth reading again.”
Films mentioned in Chapter 3:
‘The Great Dictator’ – “How anyone could see anything in the ‘Great Dictator’ I don’t know. I thought it was chronic”
‘Black Fury’ with Paul Muni – “quite good but nothing up to the usual Muni standard”