Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother



Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother


Writes that his bicycle has arrived and has a good ride and it is now locked it up. Describes in some detail the local countryside and type of farming. Mentions flying to Western Isles and Ireland and had fun with Lysander used as gunnery target. Gunnery exam coming up. Speculates on length of course - may have no leave before going to the Operational Training Unit.




Temporal Coverage



Four page handwritten letter


IBCC Digital Archive


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No 1436220 L.A.C. Akrill,
Hut 20,
R.A.F. Station,
The Freugh,
nr. Stranraer,
Mon. 15.6.42.
Dear Mum,

Thought I’d best let you know that my good old Lizzie [deleted] g [/deleted] was waiting for me at the station at Stranraer. She’d not suffered at all for all the long journey. Had a lovely ride on Saturday night until it came on wet & I had to pedal hard for base & had to change tunic & pants when I got back. Found the key & chained her firmly in the shed so I think she’ll be O.K. One of the lads had his tyres & inners lifted but I don’t think they’ll get at mine very well. I’ll get a pump &c when I go to Stranraer & borrow in the meantime.
Its quite a good district for biking in
[page break]
I like the country very much & wouldn’t mind living here at all though its never very warm. They go in chiefly for dairying & there really are some beautiful herds of Ayrshires. They’re a treat to see. Wish Daddy could have a look round here. Where the lands good & well farmed it’s a rich ley (I think they work on that system) Of course a lot of the land’s poor & weedy. [deleted] The [/deleted] & corn’s poorish. Nice few spuds. Farm howses, [sic] cottages & buildings [deleted] Base [/deleted] look strongly built – squat & square & whitewashed. Think Mary & Nip should come camping here – prepared for wind cold & rain though.
Just back from a trip over the Western Islands of Scotland. The scenery there’s lovely – just a maze of rugged, wooded islands and lakes. Came back over N. Ireland. It would be [deleted] bo [/deleted] grand to have a boat & spend a camping holiday there.
Yesterday we had a bit of fun with
[page break]
a Lysander (you remember them don’t you mum) We took a gun-turret on to the Sand-dunes and fitted in place of machine guns a cine-camera gun. The Lizzie made diving attacks on us & we took it in turns in the turret to “fire” on it. We each took a film of the result & they will be able to tell when the moving picture is shown on the [deleted] sceen [/deleted] [inserted] screen [/inserted] what sort of an air gunner we are
We have the Air gunnery exams tomorrow.
There is a rumour going round that we are only on an 11 week’s course but we can get nothing official. It may be true as we are rushing flying hours in & have done nearly 30 of the 100 already. Now we’re flying at all times of the day & night & should get through it in no time.
We’ve really got down to work in the air now. Think I just want practise & to grow accustomed to working things out in the air. It has surprised me how reliable my calculations can be.
If the rumour about 11 weeks is true
[page break]
it means no leave in sight for we should go straight to O.T.U. from here.
Well we shall see what happens!
Please thank Ros [deleted] f [/deleted] and Harry for letters.
P.S. Enclosed 10/-. You’ll want some for carriage on bike, parcels &c.



William Akrill, “Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed May 19, 2022, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/18044.

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