Letter to John Valentine from Frank Routledge



Letter to John Valentine from Frank Routledge


Recounts recent activities finishing OTU and posting to 207 Squadron flying Lancaster. Covers training, description of station and local towns. Mentions mutual acquaintance. Catches up with news of family and friends.




Temporal Coverage



Two page handwritten letter


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929946 Sgt Routledge
Sgts Mess
RAF Bottesford
Nr Nottingham
6 – 5 – 42
Dear John,
I must apologise for being so long in replying to your letter (I see by the date on it that it’s almost a month). I have been in the process of finishing O.T.U and having seven days leave, then being posted to 207, as you know by the address; I came here last Tuesday week. Being already operational yourself, you seem to have been rather fortunate because the way things seem to move here it looks like being some weeks before I start ops; they’re on Lancasters here and as they’ve put me in a crew now there is a certain amount of training to do before we get down to getting in 200 hours. My vision of doing them all during this summer have been rudely shattered. The station is all dispersed, which is very inconvenient and way out in the wilds, but not so bad when you get used to it. Grantham (the place seems to dog my Air force career) is still the nearest town, l but one can get to Newark and Nottingham quite easily. I hope to get to into Lincoln some time, too so I can hope to see you there. By the way, a chap from Upper Heywood was posted here a few days ago – goes by the name Pankhurst and knows you.
I do hope you managed to get home for the great occasion of your daughters first birthday – is that too much to hope for? And thank you for calling me uncle Frank – it makes me feel quite old and responsible - like. Eileen and I saw Peggy my leave and we went together to a show in London: She is hearing from Brighteyes quite regularly now, and in the middle of March was still at the Middle East pool waiting to go to an O.T.U. and being very vehement about the fact that out there to be a P/O is far better than being a sergeant because
The sergeants life was full of woe; bad messes and whatnot. He has not mentioned what happened to Yorkshire – Stringfellow and Shuttleworth, with whom he had been all along, had already gone to an O.T.U. in Kenya. You may be interested too [sic] know, that Shepheard went to 106 at Coningsby at the same time as I came here: I was very sorry we were separated as I had been with him all through training and we were rather close friends.
I hope I shall hear from you again soon, and perhaps be able to see you some time. Please give my best regards to Mrs Valentine, and to yourself – good luck
Yours sincerely



F Routledge, “Letter to John Valentine from Frank Routledge,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed June 22, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/22280.

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