Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother



Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother


Bill thanks his mother for parcel with food and letter - tomatoes and cucumbers arrived in good condition this time. Mentions harvest at home and compares to local area, where they stack their crops quite differently.

Nothing definite on leave, but really hopeful for to come home next week. Have only got two night trips, a day's bombing and some exams to go. Have completed the Bombing Exam and interview with senior officers.

Party was a great success and much better than he had feared. Almost everyone behaved themselves, they had a good meal and fine entertainment.

Gives likely details for leave. Bill adds that he gave up the chance of special bombing course at Manby near Louth (local to home) as did not want to waste navigator training.




Temporal Coverage



Six page handwritten letter


IBCC Digital Archive


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No 1436220 L.A.C. Akrill,
Hut 20,
R.A.F. Station,
W. Freugh,
Friday 18.9.42
Dear Mum,
Thanks ever so much for the parcel and letter which turned up this morning in perfect condition. The plums were O.K. and have already practically disappeared and the tomatoes & cucumber look as fresh as if they’d just been gathered. I shall enjoy them fine. The blades fit alright. Can’t get them & my last one has an edge like a saw. Please thank Harry for his letter.
Glad you’ve got the harvest in alright but you still seem to have plenty to do They’ve got a good lot in round here but what surprised me was the way they stack
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it. Instead of putting up a decent stack in the yard you’ll see two rows – about 6 in each of little cobs in a corner of the field. It looks funny to me who’s [deleted] yo [/deleted] used to seeing real long stacks and I havn’t [sic] found at [sic] why they do it like that. The hay cocks they put up are nearly as big as the corn stacks!! And I’ve seen some of them standing weeks with a sort of roof on.
Well now about leave. Still nothing definite but if all goes on O.K. I think we can count on coming next week. At least we’ve found out how we stand. First we’re to do 2 more night trips, 1 day’s bombing & a few exams & then we can go!
It’s not a cheerful week in front, but we’re getting squared up.
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We were up till the early hours [deleted] last [/deleted] this morning on our dinner outing, night flying after midnight tonight [deleted] till [/deleted] which means sleeping most of tomorrow [inserted] (day off) [/inserted] up at 6 for bombing on Sunday & flying that night till 6 next morning. Sleep on Monday, & start of exams on Tuesday.
We had our Bombing Exam yesterday morning & I think I got thro’ that alright. My actual bombing results are satisfactory so that’s that. We had our interview with the Group Captain, the Wing Commander and the Squadron Leader Armaments today (What an ordeal) so we’re getting on. Just a few odds & ends of exams now.
The party was a great success and turned out far better than I’d feared. I didn’t look forward to it at all but [underlined] almost [/underlined] all behaved very well and I really had a thoroughly
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good time. We invited the CO. the Wingco. the Squadron Leader Navigation, the Gunnery Leader, and, of course, all our instructors.
We had the most beautiful meal – anything but a war time one & then settled down [deleted] to [/deleted] round the piano & a number of talented members of the party gave turns. One of our lads is marvellous for that sort of thing and made us ache with laughing. Of course it was a bit beery but only one got more than he could manage gracefully. I’d a half-pint of shandy & was quite satisfied. One F/Lieutenant who’s i/c Operations Room just flung himself among us to enjoy himself & his songs on the bus back must have wakened the whole countryside. You can understand folk letting themselves go once in a while after 5 months here!
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[underlined] 5. [/underlined]
Its good to see the officers “with their peaked caps off” as the C.O. put it for once in a while.
Well must make up my bed. & try for a spot of rest before flying. I’m on Night Bombing so it’ll be cold. The other night we waited up till 2. o’clock all ready & then were told it was cancelled.
No, I forgot to enclose the £2. but as I hope I’ll be coming home a week today I’ll bring it then. Expect I’ll be on the same train. 12 something isn’t it. Hoping that I’ll be able to catch sight of David. He should be coming home tonight. Expect he’ll be coming up. If anything turns up to stop me coming on Sat. I’ll let you know but I think its pretty safe. Oh gosh Arn’t [sic] I ready for it!!! So I’ll be looking out for Mary & [deleted] Mickey [/deleted] [inserted] Michael [/inserted] & Ros on
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[underlined] 6 [/underlined]
Sat – 26th. If I get an earlier connection at Carlise [sic] I’ll [deleted] let [/deleted] ring you up.
By the way – forgot to tell you I had the chance of going on a Special Bombing Course to Manby, near Louth, & getting posted as bomb-aimer (after passing out here as observer) on a Lancaster Squadron. It was very tempting as it meant getting near home & doing [inserted] a [/inserted] good job on Ops. but I don’t want to have done all this Navigation for nothing.
Cheerio till Sat
Love to all
[underlined] Bill [/underlined]
Sat A.M.
Got our aircraft returned safely tho’ some of them seemed to have had fun & games over Eire!! [underlined] We [/underlined] bombed our target successfully. Bed at 6.30 but as it was Sat I got up at 9.40



William Akrill, “Letter from Bill Akrill to his mother,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed November 30, 2022, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/18062.

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