Goodacre L - WWI letter 1917 September 10

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Transcribed during a crowd source project in 2015.



1917 September 10


In Active Service

Mrs J Laird and Rev J Laird

Grammer Street


New Zealand


Codford Camp

Sept 10th 1917

Dear Lil,

I have just received your letter of July 15th with the plans of your new home in Nelson.

I(it) did reach me near my birthday but the wrong side. I know you all would be thinking of me that day. I went to bed about ten the night before my birthday, and that would roughly  be about 9 in the morning of Sept 3rd in N.Z. I lay thinking of you all a home, of course I could easily picture mother just then, cleaning up after breakfast, or perhaps having it. Pater just going to work, or more likely amusing himself about the garden or wondering why he couldn’t get the car to start, (Don’t Laugh) and thinking he would have to take the ponnies, and then mum pokes her head of the bed room window and sing(s) out “no you don’t I am going out this after noon” - ‘fines’ Thats what it used to be, I suppose it is like it still, only there used to be one of us home to twist the old handle and make it go.

I am off to Sling in the morning I think, and will very likely be in Frog land this time next week. All our boys have been on leave, or rather part of them. They are out of the Firing line now, and this week are been (being) reinforced at their fullest extent. They are going to have a go in again at the end of this month so one of our boys was telling me who has just come over from France. There is a position that is barring the way to Ostend, and if they can get it, it means Ostend falling into our hands very shortly. The Canadians have had two goes at it and the Australians one, both been repelled with considerable losses. If the N.Zs can take it they will be classed the best troops in the Empire. Our boys are as keen as mustard to have a go of it and if they succeed they will be kidding them selves I can tell you. They were the first  to obtain their objective in the Messines Battle, although the(y) had the centre, and town itself to take. They received great praise here in England over that.

To day we have march about 22 miles so you can guess I am pretty tired(.) That is done with The full pack up(,) which comprised all that we need on Act.S. (Active Service) Over coat, underpant, singlet, shirt, socks, cleaning gear, toilet; and haversack and water bottle, a nice little load I can tell you.

We have averaged for the last week eighteen miles a day including 1 hour physical drill. I am feeling as fit as a fiddle now. Well I think I am at the end of my bit of news so had better close (,) I have a letter from home too which I have just answered. I am glad you like Nelson (so far)

Well Good bye for now with much love to all.

Your Affectionate Brother, Leo

add(ress) 3/1605



N.Z.Postal Base


P.S. send this add.(ress) home as I have sealed their letter. Dont forget, as father is waiting to post letters on to me.

(text in bold are words that I am unsure of. Bold text in Brackets are added only to make reading easier,)" 


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