Letter from Sergeant Ian Hay to his father



Letter from Sergeant Ian Hay to his father


Writes about his training and that he was now operational and describes his aircrew role as rear gunner and second wireless operator in an Anson. Continues with description of his activities in the local town and on base.


Spatial Coverage




Three page handwritten letter


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[inserted] Copy by Keith Macleod [/inserted]

906233 Sgt: Hay, I,
Sergeants Mess,
R.A.F. Kinloss,
Nr Forres,

Sunday 8th September.

Dear Daddy,

Thanks for your letter, but one piece of advice – I shouldn’t visit Scotland this year, it’s too damn cold! – I’ve been wearing sweaters etc: since I arrived and I’m still not warm, I think winter is just on the horizon in these parts. Still it will be very nice if you could manage to run round this way while you’re up.

As to your question whether I’m operational or still u/t; when I received your letter I was u/t, as this was No: 19 O.T.U. – that should have gone on for 8 weeks, but as from today, we have become operational and are supposed to take off within a few minutes, if so required, for fun and games over the North Sea. The reason, as I expect you know is that A.M. is in a flap about

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invasion or something similar. Anyhow to-day we were all crewed-up. Those who have been here some weeks are on Whitleys and the rest of us are bunged into Ansons – so I am now the rear gunner of an Anson, and also 2nd W/Op if the other proper W/Op (who has only been here a fortnight longer than I) gets a basinful.

Unfortunately we are confined to camp, but I hope the whole thing is only temporary. Thank God I got Saturday (our free day) in Inverness, where I did quite a bit of shopping, and then went to a dance at the ‘Caledonian’, which wasn’t too bad. Incidentally the beer per 1/2 pint is the same price as whisky, so its just as cheap to stay on whisky. While I’m on that subject, is there any pub in Inverness where one can obtain Tallisker?

This place is a little boring though, and the pictures seem to be about the only form of entertainment – so I divide my time between Elgin, Forres and Inverness for them.

I don’t think there is any more news for

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the time being. I hope your leave materializes, I could do with a spot myself.

Best love

(signed) Ian.


I Hay, “Letter from Sergeant Ian Hay to his father,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed February 27, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/37113.

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