Letter from Douglas Hudson to his parents



Letter from Douglas Hudson to his parents


Catches up with mail received and sent. Mentions there had been a tightening up recently and after six months confinement made him realise what a gift freedom was. Writes of blossom he has seen and that they are confined to camp. He mentions sharing a room with two others and trying to learn French which the local guards speak worse than him. Philosophies over his situation and catches up with gossip. Mentions he has not lost any weight.



Temporal Coverage



Two page handwritten letter


IBCC Digital Archive


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British Prisoner of War. 755052. Sgt. Chef. J.D. Hudson.
Camp de Séjour Surveillé.
Afrique du Nord.


My Dear Mother & Dad,

Letter writing is one of the joys in this part of the world. I wrote to you a post-card last Friday acknowledging receipt of your letter of December 30th & your cable of Feb. 3rd both of which I was so glad to receive. That is the last news I have received from you. I do hope you are both still keeping well. I am still all right but must admit that there has been a lightening up here recently, and after six months of confinement I certainly realise what a gift freedom is. So do we all. The increase of our allowance I spoke of in my previous letter did not materialise. One of the recent charms I noticed here was the almond blossom which is rather like apple blossom only a lighter pink. Of late even that has been denied us & we are at present having to content ourselves with the confines of our camp. I ask you, one of these days I expect things will turn out satisfactorily & the time will come again when I can talk to you both. When I get home again I shall definitely have plenty to say & shall certainly be a lot more worldly wise. A recent good thing in our favour is that three of us (Tony & another very decent chap) now share a room & we have the satisfaction of keeping it to our satisfaction. I think when I get out of here I shall never go to bed, because I get plenty here. I have been having a go at the French here to pass the time. The finer points of grammar are difficult when it comes to speak, but that doesn’t really matter because most of our

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Arab guards speak a lot worse French than I do. I had one episode which was extremely interesting, when my French was rather useful, but I’ll tell you all about it when the happy day of reunion comes. Things certainly have happened during the last eighteen months. Little did I think in the Jaffé days what the outcome of the near future would be. There is little I can tell you, in order to ensure that this letter passes all the Blue Penals. I an again experimenting sending it by Air Mail as I did the last one, in the hope it will get through more quickly. Letters from England by Air Mail definitely arrive sooner, & I strongly advise you to send me some letters this way. I note that you can only send me slab chocolate & that cigarettes are “defendu” so I should not bother. I was surprised to learn that Acacia was married. Will you send her my congratulations? The war seems to be the general excuse for marriages although somehow or other I am not in the African market. // Pause for the evening meal – the Arabs call it “Le Soupe” The French in normal times would doubtless call it “Le Diner” // The meal now over – not too bad tonight & followed with our own made black coffee; tea cannot be obtained. Since arriving here I have not once had either butter or milk except a little tinned milk. I don’t miss either now & get sufficient fattening from the olive oil. That is one thing certain I have not lost any weight at this place. I’ll guarantee I can eat practically anything now & I can honestly say I do like Cabbage – Cauliflower – M Carrots & Rice things I wouldn’t touch at home but which we can get here. Well I am at the bottom of the page so will say cheerio until the next letter. Remember me to all the enquirers. I do hope you will continue to remain well & safe. I am by no means [underlined] finished. [/underlined] With all my love & wishes

[underlined] Douglas. [/underlined]



James Douglas Hudson, “Letter from Douglas Hudson to his parents,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed December 9, 2022, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/22505.

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