Gunner Bert Cox
Whitley Camp England
May 15, 1919
My dearest Mamma,
Have just this minute received your letter of April 6th and Leila's, enclosed, and say, I laughed for about 10 minutes, when I got to this part : "I was so much in love, I'd forgotten my duty" and your conception of military discipline. You're quite right but, only in war time !! One would never know that this is the same army that it was a year ago. Anyway, don't be afraid; I'm not in love. Just passing the time.
We left Janche, Belgium on May 4th, for Le Havre and sailed for England on May 11th……..arrived at the old Whitley Camp on the 12th. It seemed like getting back home again.
Of course, we trotted off to Godalming at the earliest opportunity and I saw several of the old faces. Haven't seen Alice yet. Her husband has gone back to Canada, I believe. I told you , didn't I, that she was married last December?
70% of the Battery go on leave tomorrow for 8 days. But I am staying until they return, because I’m having a new uniform made to order by tailors in Godalming….$25.00 This is the one I'll land in. I'll go on leave about May 25th. Will see Yarwood and Poppy in London…Go to Devonshire for a day and then to Scotland.
We should sail for Canada about June 10th or 15th. Had a letter from Norman, yesterday. I do hope he'll be out in July. ( in Barbadoes)
They have SOME system of demobilization, here. Each man goes through about 6 medical boards (tests). Inspections of all kinds. Signs hundred of forms and answers innumerable questions.
After the end of May, address my letters in care of :
I'll be there for a few days on my way to the coast.
We are having glorious weather..
Lots of love for everybody and thank Leila for her letter and don't worry, dear Mamma. Will see you soon.
Your affectionate son,
PS Did you receive the letter from the lady, that I was billeted with, in Janche? Good wasn't it? Don't let anyone claim my cushion cover. THAT is mine. It was painted by one of the fellows in the Battery.
(note: This is the oil painting on silk of the battle flags, gun etc., which was later framed with Bert's medals …it hung in our living room for years.)