Letter from Peter Lamprey to W Gunton



Letter from Peter Lamprey to W Gunton


Peter Lamprey writes about his life at Royal Air Force Tiree including the weather and he teases his former workmates.





Eight page handwritten letter


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[RAF Crest]

Hut. N3
RAF. Tiree.

[underlined] Friday. 17th. April [/underlined]

Dear Uncle Bill and others.

At long last, out of the blue, I get news. Civilisation is once more within distance. Once again your concience [sic] has forced you to write to the man who is winning your blasted war for you.

In answer to your momentous epistle. Please convey my sympathies to brother George and wish him a speedy return to where I can still aim my usual epithets at him. I’d send him some grapes if I could buy them – if I don’t like them myself. Wish him

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luck for me.

I hope your affairs have settled down and taken a more normal turn. There are one or two more things I hope about you but I don’t think the language would get by the censor. From what I hear things at P.R. are going O.K. Rusty is having a few [deleted] half [/deleted] half days. The obvious thing is to sling the perisher out and the job must go perfect. Common logic.

Things – unfortunately for your wishes – are going fairly well here. I am still doing my double turn – two men’s work. Otherwise it is like a rest cure – there is nothing to do but sleep when we get to bed – when. We still manage to keep sane and sober – the latter a safety precaution against poisoning and the former is of course comparative.

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[RAF Crest]

[underlined] 3. [/underlined]

After reading some of the performances you people are putting up in my absence, I have no fears of going behind bars. My best position is in front of them. As for my bit of black passion – listen – how in hell can I tell you how she is. More than likely one of my so-called pals is already engaged in knifing me in the back. They perform almost as well as my London friends. The only thing is – having been stabbed from behind so often by you people there is some difficulty in finding a new place to plant the knife. You ask – have I received all the parcels – once again I repeat – until yesterday all I had from you was complete indifference. If any parcels were sent my friend, they are still sculling. I’ve not heard one peep

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or whimper of them.

Now that Spring has come to Tiree we can see the island better. After one look I don’t care if winter comes back. Life still plugs on its weary [deleted] indecipherable word [/deleted] way and barring the date we get very little variety. Not that I expect to collect any sympathy from you people by a recital of my sufferings.

About this time of the year an old friend of mine – Harry Straw – will be observed making paper bags. This is a part of the usual spring clean of the old oak chest. The notes are retied in bundles of fifty and put into nice clean bags. Let me know if he addresses a few to me and I’ll keep a look out for it.

Although you did not mention it I expected to hear that Mr. Hunt had collapsed when

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[RAF Crest]

[underlined] 5. [/underlined]

the new income tax came in. I suppose he is sorry he doesn’t drink and smoke – think of the money he could save giving them up.

I am sorry to hear that Cherry is taking the rose-strewn path to ruin. Spending his holidays with Moloney will be his downfall. Moloney, in the words of one of my contemporaries, is so low, that it would take a special dispensation from heaven, to raise him to the level of utter degradation.

I cannot credit your tale of Charlie and his underhanded work. The man is honest from the soles of his feet down. The news that Dave has taken a new partner is evidence that he intends to see anybody does his share – anybody but himself. If he can only stay out of prison long enough,

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he’ll have Waterlows working for him.

There seems to be an undercurrent of jubilation in your letter, at my return to this sample of your “lovely spots this side of Scotland”. If I am correct in this, then you and I will do more than celebrate when I eventually shake the shackles. We have now got to the stage where we are expecting to be recalled any day. This in case you don’t know means precisely nothing. It is just a guarantee that when we eventually pass out from old age they will ship the bodies to the mainland.

I don’t intend to regale you with any more of my hopes or aspirations. One of these days I shall draw a shred of leave and come and have a look at you working for victory. I shall let you know in time to

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[RAF Crest]

[underlined] 7. [/underlined]

get the rest of the chapel out of their clubroom.

Thank Eddie (ink room) for his wishes. Give my regards to the Guv‘nor. Harry Ashton can take them in with the tea – from poet to potman. Remember me to the engineers – OPA’s and others. Kiss Jack Denny – if he feels strong enough to stand it.

All the best.


P.S. The WAAF asked an officer what he was. “Naval Surgeon” says off. “Well” says W. “How they specialise these days”


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P.P.S. Lets [sic] have a bit more bloody letter answering.

[censor signature]



Peter Lamprey, “Letter from Peter Lamprey to W Gunton,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed July 15, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/6636.

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