Letter from Ursula Valentine to her husband John Valentine



Letter from Ursula Valentine to her husband John Valentine


Reports arrival of parcel with socks, chocolate, sweets and honey. Mentions filling out form for billeting office providing particulars of people living in house and hopes they will not have anyone billeted with her. Continues with news of her activities and the baby. Writes about acquaintance's ghastly evacuation voyage to the United States.



Temporal Coverage

Spatial Coverage



Six page handwritten letter


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[underlined] No 4. [/underlined]
Aug. 14th
My darling,
Today I received a long letter from you, which made me specially happy, you write such lovely things in it, and also a parcel of socks containing the most delightful surprises, choccies, sweets and a jar of honey that looks & smells most delectable. I’m going to keep it for your leave unless a very urgent need arises. We both love honey so & specially so when we share it. It arrived intact and had only leaked a wee bit on to one sock, and I’ve washed the socks now so there’s no damage done at all. Thank you ever so much, darling. It’s sweet of you to think of sending presents like these.
[page break]
I’ve got lots of sweets now, we hadn’t gone far down the first tin you sent, so you needn’t bother about us any more for a while, I’m sure Muriel & Robert would appreciate some if you can still get some.
This morning I received a form from the billeting officer requiring particulars of the people living in the house. I counted Mrs Stenzel as one because she’s sure to arrive soon now that she’s started sending her luggage here, & I put down you & Peter as [deleted] one [/deleted] those for whom accommodation is reserved. I do hope I don’t get anyone, the house will be just pleasantly occupied when Mrs Stenzel
[page break]
comes, & if I do have to have a war-worker & someone billeted on me I suppose I shall have to give up the nursery. Let’s hope it won’t happen. The worst of it will be I shall feel bound to remain here later when I might perhaps be able to go to you, unless Mrs Stenzel would run the house for Ba & the billettee. However I needn’t worry about that yet.
I thoroughly enjoyed my afternoon with Jean Sempell yesterday. The walk wasn’t as bad as I’d feared. I did it in just over an hour, & it didn’t rain on me. As I had expected Jean was pretty jealous of
[page break]
Frances. Of course its hardly fair to compare a baby of 4 1/2 weeks with a young lady of 4 months, but even allowing for that Anne Virginia is nothing like so lovely as Frances, tho’ I say it as [indecipherable word]. She’s a very good baby, as regards sleeping, & is remarkably like Christopher in features. Jean of course was staggered at the size of Frances & couldn’t imagine Anne ever being so big, & she did look to me smaller than Frances at that age, but of course she only weighed 8 lb 2 at birth. Jean’s looking very flourishing & sent you her love. Christopher, whom I did not see, now apparently writes the Times himself they are so short staffed.
[page break]
Jean told me a little about Felicity who apparently had a ghastly voyage over to America crammed with 50 other mothers & their children into the hold of the boat (so she said) & when they were 4 days out there was a terrific bang in the middle of the night whereupon the 1st class passengers rushed to the lifeboats, filled them & left the boat, while Felicity & some of the others down 3 flights of steep ladders in the hold knew they couldn’t get out with their children so prepared to meet the maker where they were. However the boat didn’t sink, & after a lot of bother picking up the lifeboats full of rich Jews (inevitably!) they proceeded to America. They thought it must have been a small iceberg, not a torpedo. Rather unpleasant
[page break]
anyway with a small boy only a few weeks old. Now of course she’s as sick as mud that she’s left Kenneth & wishes she could come back, but apparently she isn’t allowed to till after the war. I’m glad I didn’t go to India
We talked babies 19 to the dozen until about 7 p.m (I fed Frances there) & then I set off for home, and arrived about 8.30, pretty tired & slept like a dog till 7 this morning.
Your daughter is squawling somethin’ horrid & its not yet 1 o’c, so she has no hope of a feed.
Johnny my dear I love you so much, whether you’re good at bomb aiming or not. Perhaps they’ll put you on some super-bomber where you have an underling to drop bombs & you only do navigation. Anyway I love you & always will.
Yours ever Ursula



Ursula Valentine, “Letter from Ursula Valentine to her husband John Valentine,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed June 12, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/19599.

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