Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother



Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother


Bill describes how his flying hours are going and (they are really 'navigating' most of the time, if the pilot co-operates) how they will be going on to reconnaissance flights and aerial photography next. Reassures his mother that it is safe for him to fly as a pilot.

Describes what the local farmers are working on presently and would really like to help them, but he has not got to know anyone yet. Has managed to do quite a lot of bicycle rides around the area. Also describes the local wild flowers and wild 'rockeries' on the seashore, which he would like to take home with him.

Problem with having a bicycle with him is that everyone wants to borrow it. Doesn't mind this occasionally, but if asked too often can be a bit awkward having to refuse.

Discusses washing and sending money etc home.




Temporal Coverage




Five page handwritten letter


IBCC Digital Archive


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1436220 L.A.C. Akrill,
Hut 20,
R.A.F. Station,
West Freugh,
Friday. 19.6.42.
Dear Mum,
Found your letter waiting when I got back from N. Ireland & the Isle of Man. (feeling in a bad mood & fed up with the pilot who wouldn’t – or couldn’t – maintain correct courses heights and speeds.) Most of the boys are flying tonight & will have to spend half their day off in bed but luckily I escaped that. I’ve got about 40 hour’s flying in now + 17 more at E.F.T.S. We’re now really “navigating” – when the pilot will play though most are O.K. Next week we do some reconnaisance [sic] flights and have to do some aerial photography. There seems no limit to the jobs we have to do but its
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all very interesting. Saw the films of the Lysander the other day. No I don’t think it’s very risky letting me fly – I’m surely not as dangerous as all that – I want to be a good pilot as well if I can.
Glad David came to see you before he went. I’ve been looking out very anxiously for a letter but not yet got one. I do hope he likes it & fits into the life alright. I know he’s dead keen but things seem very different when you get into the services & get messed about. Still if I’m O.K. & happy he should [deleted] be O.K. [/deleted] get on alright.
Poor old Bob. I was sorry to hear about him. He was a nice old dog. Wish we had one of Bess’s pups now she’s getting on. I like the snap with mum & her on. Good job Tommy recovered.
Wonder if Annie will be coming back with you tomorrow. Hope you don’t upset Michael dragging him off to Metheringham
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You’ll be busy with the singling. I’m wanting to find some deserving case & go & do a bit in my spare time when I’m not flying at nights. They’ve started cutting seeds here. Don’t like to think I’m doing nothing for an hour or two when I should enjoy doing a bit. Trouble is I don’t know [deleted] ab [/deleted] anybody.
My bike’s going fine. Had 2 grand spins at nights. The scenery’s really lovely but the hills take some pushing up. Still what goes up must come down! All the streams have steep banks covered with trees & thick with ferns, foxgloves, bluebells & masses of flowers. The wild “rockeries” on the sea shore are a picture at this time of the year. I’d give anything to move one bodily to Potter Hill. The wild plants growing here beat anything cultivated. I got into some desolate parts last night & got home pretty late as well as tired & hungry. Chief trouble with having
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a bike is people wanting to borrow it. There’s a certain pilot found out about mine & comes in as regular as clockwork just to see if I’m using it. Don’t mind lending it now & then when it’s needed but its usually a case of “Sorry Sarge.” Hope to have a good ride round tomorrow but must get hold of some oil first.
Will get off to the Scotch Hut for cup of tea & couple of buns & get parcel of washing [deleted] off [/deleted] made up. Can’t change vest as you didn’t send clean one back. Believe I said I had enclosed 10/- in last letter but didn’t do it. Now enclosing £4. P’raps you’d look after it or get some certs from Mrs. Taylor. I seem to be giving you all my financial affairs to deal with. As long as they keep right way!
[underlined] Love Bill [/underlined]
P.S. Am sending collars as the laundry here has made them so shrunk they nearly choke me. Don’t suppose you can “unshrink” them!
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[underlined] Sat P.S. [/underlined] Sending home my watch which konked after its first trip upstairs. Luckily I’ve got an issue watch. Also sending a book I bought so it will be out of the way. Not heard from David. Been wondering about him all the week.
[underlined] Bill [/underlined]



William Akrill, “Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed July 3, 2022, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/18047.

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