Friday, 12 December 2014

Mittens, Caps and Tea Tablets

From the Cheltenham Chronicle, 12th December 1914.


The following letter has been received from Colonel A. C. Lovett by Colonel J. C. Griffith, of Cheltenham, dated Dec. 5th :—

"Dear Griffith.—I write to thank you all on behalf of the regiment for so kindly sending out to the men such welcome gifts of socks, mittens, etc., etc.  We are all most grateful to our good friends in Cheltenham, and if time permitted we should like to acknowledge their generosity individually.  But I feel sure they all know that this is impossible.  The Government issues are now being made very liberally to each man, who gets a warm undervest, shirt, sweater, belt, hairy Canada coat, great coat, socks, and pants all new.  With all this a man should be warm, but mittens and woollen caps are ever welcome, as they get worn out, also warm socks.  If donations are ever received they could be spent well on tea tablets, soup squares, or small tins of potted meat, rather than on cigarettes, of which we have now two months’ supply.  We have had bright weather lately, but now it is colder, and we expect some snow.

“We are now over 900 strong, with twenty officers, a good lot.  His Majesty inspected us on the 3rd inst. and presented Pte. Law with a Distinguished Conduct Medal. --Again thanking you very much, yours sincerely,

[ Along with the previous post, this suggests that the men at the Front  were by now adequately clothed for the winter.  Don't know what a 'hairy Canada coat' was.

A request for plum puddings is conspicuous by its absence - but perhaps December 5th, when the letter was written, was a little early to be thinking of Christmas in the trenches.]


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