Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula



Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula


Writes he is impatient for her to arrive so he can spend an hour or two a day in her company. Encloses a travel voucher. Has filled out formal application but had to put in date although this was not yet fixed. Put down 25 January 1941 and explained what she would have to do if she could not travel on that day. Explains in detail how to send luggage in advance. Writes cannot help with information on nursing home as it was surrounded by high wall and he wasn't allowed more that 3 feet from door.




Temporal Coverage



Four page handwritten letter


IBCC Digital Archive


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1251404 AC2 Valentine
D Flight 1 Squadron
Queens Hotel,

Monday 20/1/41

My Darling Ursula, Every letter I get from you adds to my impatience to have you down here at Aberystwyth so that I shall be able to enjoy at least an hour or two every day of your marvellous company. I am longing for it horribly – that is the right word for it aptly describes the empty gnawing feeling at the pit of the stomach when I reflect on the days that have to elapse before your arrival. I am enclosing, or at least I hope to enclose (this being written in anticipation) a voucher to enable you to travel here at a reduced cost. I sent in a formal application for it today & was promised it for tomorrow, Tuesday. There is one snag, however, which I am afraid you will have to overcome. I had to give a specific date for your journey – which of course I do not know. I explained to the Corporal that I couldn't give a definite date but he said that I must do so & he didn't know whether the voucher would be valid for a date later than the one stated. However, I had to give something & so I have applied for a voucher on the earliest day that you have mentioned as a possibility viz 25th Jan. If you are not able to come on that date, I should advise you to 'phone the railway company & tell them that you have the voucher for 25th Jan but owing to unforeseen circumstances are unable to travel until a later date. If they will allow you to use the voucher at a later date – all well & good. As an alternative they might tell you to buy the ticket on 25th & use it later. If they won't do either of these things, you will have to return the voucher to me letting me have a definite date & I will get it altered. Please don't do this if you can avoid it. I made myself sufficiently unpopular by applying for it today when the office was frantically busy preparing for a mock air raid warning.
You will also have to solve a minor problem with luggage in advance if you haven't bought your ticket by the time you send it. You might use the voucher as evidence of your intention to travel, but the best scheme seems to me to save all your luggage until the very last. If you do as I tell you & hire a car, you can take all your luggage with you & at Paddington, having bought your ticket, you can then leave the bulk of your baggage to the tender mercies of the G.W.R.
For God's sake, darling, be careful of yourself on the journey. You will have Jane to worry you so have the minimum of hand luggage & employ a porter everywhere in preference to straining yourself. Be particularly careful when you change trains at Shrewsbury. Yours parcel of pyjamas etc duly arrived today. Thank you very much, dearest As time is getting so short now, don't bother sending anything else but bring it with you. I won't reply in full to your lovely long letter of Thursday but I do appreciate all the details of your purchases, your new garment etc. They are just the sort of things I want to hear about you. I am afraid I can't help you much as regards the Maternity Home. It is surrounded by a high wall & I was never allowed more than three feet from the front door. I don't recollect any marvellous impressions but I had so little opportunity of seeing anything that that is not surprising. Weather is still pretty unpleasant here – our drill & PT had to be cancelled today on account of the snow. The RAF uniform seems to act like a magnet to snowballs which fly at one as if by magic as soon as one puts a foot our of doors – the throwers are mostly Aber. Young ladies. MUST do some work now – COME as soon as you can Love & love & love John



J R M Valentine, “Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula ,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed March 21, 2023, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/19176.

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