Letter from Donald Baker to his mother



Letter from Donald Baker to his mother


Writes that he has now moved to near Torquay and has started his pilot's course. Describes local area and accommodation. Thanks her for forwarding cash. Catches up with family/friends news. Mentions Rhodesian casualties in Egypt. Writes that they are going away on a three weeks maths course and exam followed by a navigators course. This would be followed by elementary and then advanced flying training. This will take six months before he can get into any action. Mentions difficulty of passing all the courses and comments on quality of officers and NCOs on the courses.




Temporal Coverage



Three page handwritten letter


This content is available under a CC BY-NC 4.0 International license (Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0). It has been published ‘as is’ and may contain inaccuracies or culturally inappropriate references that do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the University of Lincoln or the International Bomber Command Centre. For more information, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ and https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/legal.





[circled 1]
[underlined] c/o Rhodesia House Etc [/underlined]
Friday 9th October 1940.
My Dearest Mother,
I have received no letter from you since last I wrote but presume this is due to the fact that I have left Bridgnorth and am now near Torquay and starting on my pilots course.
It is very lovely down here, as the scenery is so wonderful. Most of the Air Force here is billeted in Hotels as it used to be a very popular seaside resort in peacetime. There are four of us in my room (All Rhodesians) and it is not too bad as we have plenty of fresh air with a big window overlooking the sea.
By the way I forgot to thank you ever so much for forwarding the cash which was very welcome. As it was made out to the Strand P.O. the P.O. at Wolverhampton would not change it
[page break]
but managed to get it changed [deleted] to [/deleted] by the manager of one of the big hotels in Wolverhampton.
Suppose by this time Harry has returned from his honeymoon and has settled down to his new home. Is he going to grow tobacco again this year or has the army got him yet. I am sorry to say we hear rumours of Rhodesian casualties in Egypt etc but of course nothing official so I wonder if you would please send me a Rhodesian paper now and then so can see how things are getting along [deleted] get [/deleted] generally.
We are leaving this place tomorrow for a 3 weeks Maths course at another camp a few miles off, after which course we have to pass an exam. If I fail that am “out” straight away. Then there is a 3 weeks navigation course at another place and another exam. Then there is an Elementary Flying Training School where we stay about 8 weeks and Advance F.T.S. – another 8 weeks, so there are six months of pretty hard work ahead before I see any action. This is [underlined] if [/underlined] I pass
[page break]
all the exams. They are pretty strict and it seems that only about half the fellows who enter ever become pilots. However if I fail I shall take Observer or Gunner but I really hope I pass. The atmosphere at a Pilots Training School is much different to the last place I was at as generally speaking the fellows are pretty “high class” and the Officers & N.C.O.s are the very best they can find, and cadets are treated more or less like gentlemen again.
Well dear mother I trust this finds you as well and fit as it leaves me. I must close now as there is no more news.
Much love to you all in Rhodesia
Your loving son
P.S. Please don’t forget to pay my Ins. Premiums out of any deferred pay you get for me.
love Donald


D A Baker, “Letter from Donald Baker to his mother,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed April 16, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/25562.

Item Relations

This item has no relations.