H. M. S. Glos’ter
Dear Mother –
Just received your letter dated the 11th – quite a large mail we got this time – up to the 17th. We are also having lovely weather out our way, we could very nearly go into whites again- Thanks very much for the pillow slips – they have just arrived & Jane’s scarf too – a beauty, but at present makes me hot to look at it – but I’ve no doubt I shall want it soon.
Re – Ben & Mr Bennett – as you say a rather difficult question – and I must say that I should rather be inclined to let him come back to Delaford, because they will be bound to meet elsewhere & that sort of deception from your point of view I’m sure you dont like. Much better let them more or less carry on openly. It sounds ridiculous I know Wiggie 22 & Ben 28 or whatever her age is, but these days nature does funny things – & I also don’t think Wiggie is worthy of Ben, her due is someone much more perfect- In any case now they won’t have heaps of chances of meeting – I wonder what you have done, because I expect Ben is home by now anyhow! I hope she has arrived safely & is well-
Most people seem to be housing soldiers now- what are they ordinary Tommies or University fellows or what. Nancy seems burdened with 6 of them-.
We are buying a gramaphone for the Mess now- just to brighten up the entente- Hope we shall exist for some time yet to get some benefit out of it.
We are just off to coal.-
With ever so much love to you all
from your ever loving son
Please thank Jane for the scarf & her letter.
This is the first mention of Ivan Bennet also known as Wiggs or Wiggie. He’s several years younger than Ben and as we can see, Paul doesn’t think much of him. It seems likely Ben was encouraged to go to India, or sent there, to prevent a romance blossoming between them.