Letter from Ian Hay to his grandmother



Letter from Ian Hay to his grandmother


Writes about a mix up in his travel arrangement and his subsequent journey. Mentions other cycling expeditions in Wiltshire and including a visit to friend in Bath. Comments on weather and that he might get leave at Easter.




Temporal Coverage



Three page handwritten letter


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[Royal Air Force crest]

906233. A.C.2. Hay. I.
Hut Y.42.
‘A’ Sqdn: 2 Wing,
R.A.F. Yatesbury,


Dear Granny,

So sorry I haven’t written before, but a chain of circumstances seems to have been against me. Anyhow this is what has happened during the week.

Last Tuesday apparently Pine told me the wrong train, because the one that he said connected at Reading, went to Twyford & Henley only, so I took a risk, by getting off at Twyford & cycling hell for leather to Reading. I got behind a lorry which broke the headwind, but I saw the train pass me at the Woodley bridge. But anyhow I got there in time, but I [deleted] C [/deleted] was perspiring all the way to Chippenham. I then cycled back.

The next day I found I had been put back all the way to the beginning of the

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course, which also necessitated my moving into an ‘A’ Squadron Hut – Y.42, which is my address now, as you saw at the top I expect.

Last Saturday I intended to potter along out on my bicycle, between Colne & Chippenham; but so great was the wind behind me, that I went on, & before I realized it – I was in Bath! So I went to see the Prior’s at St Christophers’, who welcomed me & gave me tea. I also wandered round the place; which hasn’t changed much, except for a few extra trees planted in the grounds.

Feeling too tired to ride against the wind, and all the way up hill; I caught a train back to Chippenham & cycled on again from there and got back at about five to ten. Altogether a very nice day.

On Sunday I had promised to go out with another fellow in this hut. We started after lunch & got to Devizes where we had tea with friends of his. Then he went & played the organ at the Methodist evening service,

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[Royal Air Force crest]

which he does apparently every Sunday. I blew the organ for him, which was quite hard work during the Hallelujah Chorus’, which he played for a voluntary at the end.

Afterwards we went back to his friends & had supper. Then started back about 9 & got in about 10.

To-day has been lovely again & really quire warm even up here. I do hope it keeps up till Easter.

Incidentally I’ve heard that we get a week at Easter from [inserted] the [/inserted] Thursday, but it may be changed. Also I’m hoping for a short week-end the week before Easter.

No more to say now, except that you must not do too much at Reading, or I’ll tell Auntie Maggie to keep you in bed!

Very best love

[underlined] Ian. [/underlined]


I Hay, “Letter from Ian Hay to his grandmother ,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed May 26, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/37204.

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