Monthly Archives: November 2015

29 November 1915 – Ted to Gertrude

(postmarked 29.11.15)



Dear Mother

Just a line to tell you I have had orders to report to the India Office in writing, which I have done today, so suppose I shall be getting orders of some sort in a day or two. Will let you know at once what they are.

Love to all

yr loving son


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Posted by on 29 November, '15 in About


27 November 1915 – Paul to Gertrude

H.M.S. Gloucester
C/o G.P.O.



Dear Mother –

Are there any oldish shirts of mine in my sea-chest – or are there any of any description lying about at home that the boys will not need again – because I am getting up a concert etc onboard & we have no properties – I imagine there must be an old suit or two at home somewhere – dinner jacket – or dress coats – anything like that would be useful-

Will you send them fairly soon. Have we any other properties at home – wigs?

So sorry to trouble you – Here are some stamps for postage –

Still jolly cold up here – I’m just off to play hockey-

Very best love to you all

Your ever loving son


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Posted by on 27 November, '15 in H M S Gloucester


23 November 1915 – Paul to Gertrude

H.M.S. Gloucester
C/o G.P.O.



Dear Mother,

V. many thanks for your letter and also for the shirts which arrived safely – I am glad you have had a rake round in my chest – I told you about those brass cylinders ages ago. I had heaps more but I don’t know where they are now.

Rather nice Dick being home – is he still in hopes of going abroad? I had a p.c. from Topher too – has he written to you yet?

As a matter of fact our Captain wanted a dog – so I told him about Susan’s puppies – but he’s just told me he thinks he’d like an older animal – it’s rather hard to bring them up properly on board – so he’s getting another one.

We’ve had heaps of frost up here lately – but to-day is quite warm again really – & everything ashore is all slushy – I’ve just been playing football.

Poor old Specs – I do feel sorry for him – I wonder whether he will ever get through the medical.

Ben seems to be flying high with her Aerodrome job-! Rather difficult to start with I should think.

Well I must stop now-

very best love to you all

Your ever loving son


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Posted by on 23 November, '15 in H M S Gloucester


15 November 1915 – Paul to Gertrude

H.M.S. Gloucester
C/o G.P.O.



Dear Mother.

V. many thanks for your letter – early this week. I generally don’t get it till Tuesday. What a ripping time you all must have had for the week-end – Ted & Nell there! An ordeal for Nell to go through, I should say – I am glad you like her. Ted sent me a letter & told me about it – & I sent a hurried wire & wrote – but I have’nt heard from him since. There’s no doubt about it – the soldiers get all the luck these days.

Coldish up here these days – snowing & it’s been freezing for 2 or 3 days now. Will you send me along a shirt or two out of my chest – a couple of warm looking ones.

Yes – there is a chance I believe of some leave soon – but only a day or two at the most – & it will be very sudden – because I can’t tell you when I’m coming-

My rotten old ankle keeps swelling up. I played footer the other day & of course started it again – but it never hurts really – except when it actually gets touched-

Do you want any homes for Susan’s puppies? I am thinking I should rather like one.

So Topher has gone to France, I have written him a letter & sent him some papers.

I never know who these weird people are of whom you talk – whoever’s John Thompson – I’m sure I’ve never heard of him before.

Well I must go to bed. I must start a 2nd blanket I think.

ever so much love to you all-

Your ever loving son


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Posted by on 15 November, '15 in H M S Gloucester


9 November 1915 – Paul to Gertrude

H.M.S. Gloucester
C/o G.P.O.


Tuesday. 9th Nov.


Dear Mother – Thank you very much for your letter – Topher wrote me a line and said he was going – so I sent him a telegram & a box of cigarettes – Sorry to hear Dreda has a cold – but I hope it is better by now.

I say how dreadful about that huge fire at Cabel Reeks – as a matter of fact I saw an account of it in the Daily Mail or some other paper.

Thank you muchly for the two Surrey Advertisers – I suppose you must have addressed one to me, instead of one of the other boys.

Susan’s done well! What are you going to do with them all-

I had a lovely photograph of each of Ted & Jane sent to me to-day – awfully good I think they are. Ted looks so fat-

We’ve got a bit of a gale blowing up here to-day – raining like anything too-

Yes. Dreda sent me Willie’s address – & I got my sox to-day – please thank Ben most awfully for doing them. Also Nancy has sent me some of that lovely butter they have at the Lodge.

I must say Jim does seem to move about – he never seems to be in one place for more than about a week-

Afraid this is a very short letter but there is no news really-

I am awfully well & fit-

With ever so much love to you all

from ever your loving son


If this is the same Susan that Richard washed with Lux in the summer, then she was presumably a dog who survived the motor accident in June and had litter of puppies in the autumn of 1915.


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Posted by on 9 November, '15 in H M S Gloucester


9 November 1915- Ted to Jack Fielding

30 Lansdowne Crescent
9 November 1915

Dear Jack,

Just a line about the news which of course you have heard. You said in your letter home this morning that I was lucky, so I am, cocky, damn lucky, & Nell is an awful Dear; I thought something disastrous would occur the very first time I saw her! Of course your father wants us to wait six months before it’s ‘official’, but that doesn’t really matter, & most people seem to know already. I’m fearfully bucked at the prospect of becoming a relation-in-law of you all as I have always been awfully fond of the family who have been the soul of goodness to me.

They don’t seem to want me back yet, so I suppose I shall hang on for a bit longer. I hear the Indian Corps has been withdrawn from France, probably to Egypt. How’s the course going, and the bike! I’ve returned mine to store & feel rather lost without it.

So long, cocky, & keep smiling,




Posted by on 9 November, '15 in About


November 1915 – Nell to Jack Fielding

My dear old Jonathan,

I am so glad you are pleased to get one of your sisters engaged at last. The worst of it is that Father won’t let it be made public for six months. As you can imagine it is jolly hard to keep it a secret as lots of people seemed to know about it before it ever came  off. Ted wants me to go down to Guildford with him this weekend and spend Saturday in town and do a theatre. But if we aren’t publicly engaged Father might not let me go. I do hope he will as it would be such fun.

Do you realise I am working? I’m learning shorthand and type writing & and getting really quite brainy. I have done all my work and Mrs Tyler isn’t here to tell me what else to do so I am improving the shining hour by writing to you. I spent the weekend in Cheltenham with Ted and Jane in their rooms. It was a rag.

They had a concert on Friday and as the programme was too short, Ted sang some George Robey songs in costume and conducted the rag orchestra and it was a great success and there was a precious account of it in the Echo. We want to get him to come over here and do something at the hospital…

I am so glad you know Ted. It is rotten that Marjorie doesn’t. How funny it must not be to know your sister’s fiasco (sic).  I don’t know when it will come as it was only born this week and I think it is going to be trained first.

Yours to a cinder,


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Posted by on 7 November, '15 in About


1 November 1915 – Pauline Fielding to Jack Fielding

Excerpt from a letter from Nell’s mother to her brother.

I wonder if you will be very surprised to hear that Ted Berryman is in love with Nell, he spoke to Father yesterday, it is arranged that if they are in the same mind at the end of the six months they may be formally engaged then, & in the meantime nothing is to be said to anyone about it, but I do not see how it is to be kept secret for so long. What do you think about it, I like Ted very much but Nell is very young for him, however I feel sure he will be very good to her.

My mother, writing in the 1980s, said:

The six months edict lasted exactly a week, during which Ted collected Nell every day from her typing school and gave her lunch at the Gloucester Club… John Fielding, who also lunched at the club, realised that everyone else must see how things were and bowed to the inevitable, as much as to his own relief as that of the young couple.

The Berryman family were delighted.

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Posted by on 1 November, '15 in About


1 November 1915 – Paul to Gertrude

H.M.S. Gloucester

All Saints Day



Dear Mother

V. many thanks for your letter- So my chest does sound rather huge – how you ever got it down those back stairs I don’t know.

My ankle is quite all right again – as far as I can see – I have played hockey once or twice since, and no ill effects. I use one of those anklet things.

Nothing doing at all our way, as usual – It’s getting quite chilly these days & so fearfully damp, and colds seem to be fairly easy to catch.

Yes allright I’ll send Dreda a contribution to Topher’s gramaphone. I suppose he must be nearly having his final leave before he goes out. I heard from him the other day.

I’ve just had my cabin done up & a thorough painting – it had’nt been done for ages. Very sort of pale blue enamel now it is – remarkable lack of pictures though.

How dreary Guildford sounds now – being so black. I suppose that is all on account of that Zepp raid. I do hope you won’t have another one.

Does anyone know Willie’s address now? I want to write to him – but cannot get an address out of anyone-

Rather a dull letter I’m afraid.

With ever so much love to you all-

Your ever loving son


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Posted by on 1 November, '15 in H M S Gloucester