To Jessie from Harry Redgrave



To Jessie from Harry Redgrave


A letter from Harry to his wife Jessie, reporting that he is gaining good results in his training and has been on night flying exercises. He is studying for his next exams. Harry writes of missing their home and life together.




Temporal Coverage



Four handwritten sheets and an envelope


IBCC Digital Archive


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[postage stamp]

Mrs H.C. Redgrave [inserted] 43 [/inserted]
Oaken Grange Drive

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Sat 30.3. [corrected] 30 [/corrected] 40

Dear Jessie

The Standard and your letter of yesterday arrived this morning and I have just spent an hour round the fire reading them through. This morning was quite warm but it has now changed to cloudy and cold and so I have decided to get down to some work this afternoon and go to the pictures tonight. There are [sic] a varied selection of films on in Ayr and Prestwick but nothing realy [sic] good so I shall probably go down to the Broadway [smudged] being [/smudged] nearest. I was glad you saw “Destry Rides Again” and hope Gladys is well. Was Len home for Easter? There are some Bexhill boys coming up here on Monday perhaps Dick and Alf will be with them it does not seem possible they can still be messing around doing P.T. and drill. Their Morse should be about 12 words a minute by now I think.

I was told my pilot gave me a good

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report for my flying Thursday and I was marked 80% for my log. Not so bad was it. [sic] My night flying went off allright [sic] and it was quite an experience. The black-out everywhere was pretty good but you could pick out motor cars on the roads and the towns where they had any form of street lighting very easily. It was brought home to me that lighthouses are built for mariners and not airmen and they seemed very feeble and it was very difficult to time the flashes and count them so as to recognize them. You must have plenty of experience for night navigation I should think.

We are all swotting like hell again at the digs for next Fridays [sic] exams and I shall be pleased and relieved when all this business is done and passed. Its [sic] one succession of exams and tests here and its [sic] a wonder I am not grey. We have finished DR Theory now but all the other subjects get more and more complicated still theres [sic] only another five weeks to the finals and it will soon pass. Our next week end [sic] pass is for April 20 and as that will be one clear week end [sic] before the exams I shall try and come home or get you up here so see if you can save some money. I know its [sic] hard but I feel I should be more likely to pass if I could

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have a few hours of your company and a night of love beforehand [sic]

It seems very quiet at Redbrae now that Mitch has gone and John Newbold and at breakfast five of us sat around the big dining room table and felt quite lost. We have a laugh and wonder how many of us will be here after the twelve weeks [sic] exam and have suggested that we put sixpence a week in a kitty and the last man left takes the lot. I feel quite sorry for little Mitch as he was so comfortable here and goodness [inserted] knows [/inserted] what it will be like in Perth. John has gone to Catterick for re-classification as an air gunner AC.2 He was fool [sic] and just did not try.

I am all alone and have just switched on the wireless and “Everything stops for Tea” has started. I wonder whether you are listening too. I wish more than anything that we were able to sit down and listen together just cuddled up in the way that we used to do before all this upset started and we parted for long weeks at a time. You know what my ambition is in this war. Well its [sic] to get to a rank high enough to pay on for the bungalow where Mum and

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Milly could live and have you and Pamela living near my station so that I could come home to you at nights and live something like our old pre-war life together and be able to watch Pam grow up into the sweet kid she is sure to be.

The hope of all that does not admit of failure and carries me on when I feel tired and fed up and wishing little more than to throw all my books on the fire. I dont [sic] think its [sic] too much to wish for you do you dear so look forward to that day love and in the meantime keep smiling and wish me luck.

Give my love to all and kiss Pamela for me and ask Pamela to kiss you for Daddy how I wish I could do it myself and tell you how much I love you and that I shall always be.
Your loving husband
Harry. xxxxx


Harry Redgrave, “To Jessie from Harry Redgrave,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed January 27, 2022,

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