Letter from Ursula Valentine to her husband John Valentine



Letter from Ursula Valentine to her husband John Valentine


Writes that she has been billeted and that she is very disappointed and cut up about him not getting a commission. Hopes that he might be chosen for specialised training on strength of his navigation results and get another chance of a commission. Mentions Mrs Stenzel's son was killed. Catches up with local news and gossip.


IBCC Digital Archive





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Four page handwritten letter




Spatial Coverage

Temporal Coverage


If you could read the scrawl on the back of my last letter’s envelope, you will have received the news that I have been billeted on. Two policemen came round this morning & apparently had to find billets for 50 Waafs by the evening.
Your letter has just arrived announcing that you haven’t got a commission after all. I’m more depressed & disappointed about it than I like to admit. I wept hot tears of rage & humiliation when I read your letter. It’s all so damned unfair. You’ve worked harder than most, you can do the stuff better, you’re the right type you’ve deserved it in every way, & to think that so much should hinge on so little – because I’m afraid
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it will make an awful difference to your comfort and wellbeing, as well as to our pride – even though financially we may be better off as we are for a bit. I’m terribly cut up about it. I hadn’t realised just how much I had banked on it. I suppose there’s absolutely no hope now? The only hope that I cling to desperately is that you may perhaps be chosen for further specialised training on the strength of your navigation results, and if so (a large “if” I admit) you might possibly have another chance of a commission after that. But it’s a forlorn hope, so I suppose we must just swallow our hopes & our pride & continue as Sergeant & Mrs. But it’s a bloody shame.
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Please congratulate Norman on his commission – the lucky bounder, he’s not a patch on you in any way except perhaps that he’s got more confidence & is more pushing. (You needn’t tell him that, though!)
Altogether this is a sad day. Mrs Stenzel heard yesterday that Otto has been killed, on July 18, presumably on the Russian front, tho’ she has no details. It’s pretty awful for her, tho’ she seems to be calmer about it than I am over your commission!
My Waaf arrived last night, quite a nice girl, Dorothy Smith by name. She’s older than me & [indecipherable word] think, and a quiet homely type, fairly intelligent I should say & very grateful for a home atmosphere.
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She’s only been in the Waaf for 2 weeks (at Bridgnorth!) so is rather strange & homesick still. But I haven’t the heart to talk about her, I’m still all boiling inside over your not getting a commission. When you think of the little skunks on the administrative side [deleted] you [/deleted] who get them!! I hope I shall be able to write more rationally tomorrow.
I’ve got to go & register for National Services this p.m. It’s a nuisance.
I get 4/2 a week for the Waaf. She’s sleeping down stairs at the moment as we are full up. I don’t have to provide any food, only 2 bathes per week.
Could George or Jim Valentine do nothing about it? I suppose you’ve no mind to ask anyway.
Anyway I love you just as much as ever if not more, & I know how loyally you’ve worked. It’s absolutely wretched.
All my love to you darling. I’m sorry about this letter, but its just how I feel at the moment.
Yours always Ursula.



Ursula Valentine, “Letter from Ursula Valentine to her husband John Valentine,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed April 12, 2021, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/19619.

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