Letter from David Boldy to his father



Letter from David Boldy to his father


Letter from Leading Aircraftsman David Boldy to his father about his air gunner / photography course, some of the friends he has made and some comments about Greece and Yugoslavia in the war.




Temporal Coverage




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923995 D. A. Boldy. R.A.F.
U/T Air Gunner,
No [deleted] [indecipherable word] [/deleted] [inserted] 41 [/inserted] Air School,
East London,
20th April, 1941.
My darling Dad,
Thanks very much for your letter. This is only a short note before I go out for the week end. I shall write again during the week.
About East London, it is certainly Africa. I should have thought they would have stuck that down on the cable as the address from which I sent it. Unless of course they just put down East London.
We have exactly two weeks of the course to go. To-day we had the general exam. The last one. I think I made it too. So I am feeling fairly relieved & just in the mood for a good week-end. I have no idea what we do or where we go after the course, but if you don’t hear from me at any time don’t worry as you will know I am in the process of another transfer and cannot write. I have become very attached to this country & will seriously think about coming out here again after the war.
We have done any amount of flying [deleted] [indecipherable word] [/deleted] during the week which has just finished. It has been most
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interesting. The camera gunning is finished & from Monday the real shooting starts. First from the air to targets on the ground, then air to air shooting i.e. at a target towed by another aircraft & finally a spot of dual flying, i.e. taking over the controls. Though we do not do any landing or taking off.
In the camera guns we first started firing at another aircraft on our tails & then from the side – a beam shot is the term used. Then came aerial combat. In this you are thrown about the sky, loops & flick rolls etc. Meanwhile you do your best to fire at the enemy whenever you get the opportunity. They certainly chuck you around a bit. It is grand fun though a bit of a strain. The strain on a really fast machine must be colossal.
We are getting on excellently with the S. African lads on the course & they hope we go on with them to the next station. I don’t quite know whether I should like to go home or stay on here & go up North, that is leaving family feelings out of it, because naturally there is no place like home.
I take my hat off to the Greeks. They are 100%. The Yugoslaves [sic] put up a good show though the odds were too great for them. Still they went down fighting like men. – I only went out twice during the week as I stayed in to do a spot of work & write some letters. As I haven’t the opportunity to go to town early enough to get my films done I am asking some one to
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[underlined] 2. [/underlined]
do it for me. & will send them in my letter during the week. Actually I am asking a girl friend to take them into town for me. She is a charming girl & I am going to see her this evening.
Thanks for the Easter Cable, sorry I didn’t send one but [indecipherable word] as we fly till 6 oclock [sic] every evening we cannot get into town earlier enough. I shall be cabling at the earliest opportunity.
Our stay in east London has been a really happy one & we have made a number of good friends. Yesterday I collected the prize for the table tennis 10/- worth of stuff, such as tooth paste, shaving cream cigarettes etc. I believe they are organising another tournament but it will be a handicap affair. The gentleman who ran the show is a friend who I have been out with several times. He says I shall be heavily handicapped. Still it ought to be good fun.
I had a letter from a girl friend in Cape Town the other day. She was a nurse & we met her at Oudtshoorn when she went there for a couple of days holiday. She is a damn nice kid & was awfully good to a couple of us when we first arrived in Cape Town from Oudtshoorn & didn’t know anybody.
We seem to be having a spot of rain again. I
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hope it clears up as a rainy week end is an awful nuisance. Still even the rain will not damp my spirits to-day, as I am feeling grand more so in view of the fact that our last examination is now done with.
I hope you are getting on well with business. Don’t be too lonely Dad, I am sure better days will soon be here. Don’t worry about your big son. He is in grand form, enjoying both work & play. I hope soon to be doing some good stuff for the country.
No more to-day Dad. Look after yourself. God bless you. Lots of love from your
Ever loving son
[underlined] Dave. [/underlined]



David Boldy, “Letter from David Boldy to his father,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed July 23, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/510.

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