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Date: April 1918

Monday 1 April 1918

Dull & threatening rain. All but I start courses on Revolver & anti-gas. Went to Dental Clinic & had teeth filled. Met Capt. Page from Calgary (old cadet Instructor) in 21st. Invited me over to see him. Appointment with Basher 11.30 A.M. On parade 1.30 P.M. with "D" Coy. Had Class 8 old 249 N.C.O.'s. In 8th week. In to see Capt. Cope. Put me down to re-inforce 1st C.M.R's. Mistake in my not being detailed for some course. Adjt. asked me to proceed to Mytchett ranges Tomorrow. Had talk with R. Ferrier. Boys going on shore leave on Wed. Rained heavily while at dinner. Chown & I up to Tin Town. Called at 15th P.O. & got letter from Mother & Eva. Written 23/2/18 & 1/3/18. Wrote Dad.

Tuesday 2 April 1918

Shiny & Showery. Got my bus transportation from 6th Brigade Office, cashed cheque for five pounds at Rgtl. Pay office 15th reserve & all ready for Mytchett. Missed 10.45 bus for Hindhead. Took Taxi that far, 3 bob. Took bus from Hindhead to Aldershott - another from there to Mytchett. Got to Ranges at 1.15. Had dinner & walked out to # 4 Range & reported to officer i/c 15th party. Relieved M. Wiseman who returned to Bramshott. Back from ranges at 6K. Met Babbin & Blair of 236th. Had dinner & tried to get blankets. Walker, McLean and I walked over to Farnboro 4 miles. Saw merry go round & search lights. Back to Mess & made bed out of cushions of seats.

Wednesday 3 April 1918

Up at 6.15 & on parade at 7.15. To # 4 range & worked all A.M. Fun watching aeroplanes. Lots of 196th boys firing their G.M.C. I'm a rotten shot with Lee-Enfield. Back to Mess at 12 K. Had fine dinner. Gen. Turner & Col. Cross expected during the afternoon.
NOTE. Get Sam Potter's Tunic from Tin-Town or [?].
Stayed in from Ranges in afternoon. On parade with 15th Party. Saw General Turner & staff looking over Mytchett Camp. Had dinner & Blair, Brewer, Walker, McLean & I took train to Aldershott. Saw town & went to Hippodrome Variety show. Had fine time. Eats & back to Mytchett in Taxi.

Thursday 4 April 1918

15th Party not on ranges in Morning. Heavy rain & Parades in camp cancelled. 15th Party on Ranges in afternoon. Went down to Aldershott in evening.

Mytchett Rifle Ranges

Friday 5 April 1918

15th Party on ranges firing all morning. In P.M. on drill parade in Camp. Down to Aldershott at night.

Mytchett Rifle Ranges

Saturday 6 April 1918

Cloudy & showery. 15th Party not on range. Went on parade & matched Beynon who would leave. I won & so knocked off. Dinner 11.30 & to Range #2 at 12.30. Fired 600 yds. & men went through gas Mask Firing tests at 400 to 100 yds. Heavy rain all P.M. & everyone was soaked. McLean, Brewer Beynon & I to Aldershott on 6.30 Train. Bought boots for 2 Lb. 10 sh. I missed the train so took Blackdown bus to North Camp station & walked to Mytchett. McLean & Walker in about an hour later.

Sunday 7 April 1918

Up at 6K. had breakfast. Took platoon of 15th Reserve to No. 1. Range. Platoon goes over the battle assault practice in good order, each man with 50 Rounds S.A. From fours, into line of sections in file, & then open order. Back to Mess by 10.15. Had dinner 12 K & McLean, Walker & Myself walked as far as Farnborough & took buss to Aldershott. Long wait for buss to Hindhead. Walked from Hindhead into Bramshott. Got in at 4 P.M. Found letters from Home, Eva, Potter & B. Montreal. Bath & general cleanup. Potter gunner in artillery. In orders to attend area school of Drill & Map Reading. To bed 11 P.M. Reg. Letter for Geo. Maharg. Notice sent to me by mistake.

Monday 8 April 1918

Cloudy & cold. Up early ready to go to new course. Drew Rifle # 98839 & a bayonet & got over to school at 8.30. Took squad drill & started on Map reading. Latter looks as if might be very interesting. Fine young Sub Lecturing. Dismissed at 11.30 A.M. "Padre" Hindley asked me after dinner to sing at "Men's Smoker" on Friday Night. Paid my March Mess fees to 15th Reserve. To school at 1.30 Acted as Plat. Sgt. for Officers platoon. Chown as Coy. Cdr. Class in Equitation. Only had 1 horse. Had short ride & mounting without stirrups. To Tin-Town. Saw young Gibant from Quebec. Hogie, Chown & I to "The Better ‘Ole" at Garr. Theatre. Poor. Saw Rope, Archie S. Dutton & Lew Piskett. Wrote Eva.

Tuesday 9 April 1918

Dull. School at 8.30. Put in charge of #1 Coy. for Inspection & March Past. More map reading; very interesting Called at Cleaners & got ₤5 he owed Potter for lost time. School again 1.40. In charge #1 Coy. again. No horses for equitation so took Map Reading. Guest night at Mess, fine dinner. 249th boys back from leave. Saw R. Ferrier. Chown & I in room all evening. Enjoyed gramophone. Rain. Wrote long letter to Mother. Forwarded £5 to S. Potter by Chown's cheque.

Bramshott Camp

Wednesday 10 April 1918

Dull & threatening. To school 8:30 a.m. Map reading getting more interesting. 15th Reserve band at school in afternoon for march past. Hogie i/c #1 Company. On equitation all afternoon. Twelve horses. I had splendid little Mare belonging to adjutant of 17th Reserve battn. Lots of fun when riders fall off horses with crossed stirrups riding. Chen falls off much to "our" amusement. Hard time for bath & change before dinner. Mess meeting after dinner. Chen appointed member of committee. Chown's transfer to C.M.G.C. through. Colonel to see Hogie about his transfer. Russ. F. over to the hut.

Thursday 11 April 1918

Dull all day. School at 8:30. All morning on Map reading & Coy. drill in lecture room. Saw McEwan of "B" Coy. 196th. On 3 weeks leave from Italy. Equitation all afternoon. Rode Peggy and another larger horse. Crossed stirrups & bare back. Fell off large horse just as school quit. Had good talk with McEwan after dinner. Walked to Tin Town with him, going to Scotland. In 28 7 squadron Italy. Got compass from McLean. Seems to be O.K. for use. Chown left for Seaford 9a.m. Ferrier & Thompson over to hut with some cake.

Friday 12 April 1918

Beautiful clear day. Spent morning on surveying for a sketch map the village of Hammer. Took all morning & back to mess late. Hogie & I late for P.M. parade at school. O.C. school told us we were marked absent for parade. Worked till 4:30 P.M. trying to put onto paper our notes taken in the a.m. at Hammer. Slow but sure. Dressed for Mess. Sat by McLean at dinner. Adjutant announced Muster parade for a.m. tomorrow. Padre announced Men's Smoker concert tonight. Had splendid evening at concert. Band were fine. Ferrier sang well. I sang "When you Come Home" & "In an old-fashioned Town". Mrs. Brightman star artist. Had lunch in mess. Wrote Dad.

Saturday 13 April 1918

Bright & Warm. Up at 6:30 a.m. & on Adjt's Muster parade at 7K. Had good breakfast. Meals improving last few days. Drill and Map Reading in a.m. Constructing scales. Turned cold & windy about 2 P.M. Finished my sketch of Hammer village & dressed for supper. Hogie & I walked to Haselmere. Saw picture show. I caught bus home. Hogie walked. Forsythe & I walked from bus to Mess. Had lunch & to bed 10:30 P.M.

Sunday 14 April 1918

Windy & raw. On church parade 8:45. Detailed by Cope to take charge R.C. Parade. Took them to Tin-Town chapel. Back 10:30 & waited for O.C's Inspection of "D" line. Worked a little at my Maps & scales & had lunch. Three guests present. Slow afternoon. Nothing at all to do. Had supper at 4:30. Went over to 10th Reserve & left notes for Lt. Desjardin. Went into 20th Reserve Mess & saw bunch of 236th officers; Ryder, Maj. McLean, Mercereau, et al. Back home & had lunch. Col. told us King George coming to camp during this week. Wrote Eva.

Monday 15 April 1918

Cloudy & raining part of time. Spent all a.m. on Map reading. All afternoon on riding. Poor Badger comes in for severe balling out by the Instructor. Y.SO I watches the ride & seemed quite pleased at general progress. Rain comes down heavily after dinner. Hogie, Forsythe & I went to see "Gypsey Love" at Garrison. Very good show. Very nasty when we got out. Starting to snow.

Tuesday 16 April 1918

Woke up to find about 2" wet slushy snow on ground & still snowing. Wore my rubber boots to school. Spent a.m. working on old Chelsea school exam. paper on Map Reading. Very good questions & took figuring. Still raining in p.m. so we carried on with the Maps. No riding. Formal Mess 5:30 Band present. Staff from Aldershott Imperials visited Area school & many of them at both Noon & Evening Mess. Hogie & I worked on our Maps & finished up.

Wednesday 17 April 1918

Still raining. Got up late & had to hurry to get to school. Spent all morning on sketches. Had our sketches of Hammer given back to us marked. Started on plan of Ypres district & worked on it till noon. Allan Bill at mess for lunch. On two days leave from R.A.F. at Reading. Too wet for riding the horses so spent all afternoon on Ypres sketch. Over to 17th Reserve for Hair cut. Hogie & I started out for Tin Town to get buss to Hindehead. Walked over to Sisters' Mess & saw Leigh. Made date for first show tomorrow night. I got buss to Hindehead but Hogie couldn't get on. No room left. Wandered round Hindhead & home on buss. Couldn't get tickets for tomorrow's first show. Bill slept in my room.

Thursday 18 April 1918

Up at 7:30. Went to school. Spent till 10:30 on Coy. Drill with Coy. from Y.S.B. as our victims. Wild bunch of youngsters. Left school & went to Dentist's. Allan Bill getting ready to leave. Saw Lew Picket for few moments. He & Monteith on leave for 7 days to Wales. Called at Sisters Mess on way to school. Sis Leigh not there. Rode horses till 3:30. Had fine canter. Up to Chase Lodge & saw Sis. Leigh. Had afternoon tea & stayed an hour. All jake for show tomorrow night. Went to Men's Mess at 8:15. Late for own Mess. Two letters from home & 1 from Eva. Monteith over to hut for couple of hours. Small draft leaves for France. Wrote Vera. Hogie came in tickled to death with the show.

Friday 19 April 1918

Clear but very cold & ground frozen hard by night's frost. Spent all morning on Coy. Drill with Coy. from Y.S.B. Saw guard of honor lined up for Gov. General of Ontario at noon. Went on long compass march in afternoon from school. Through bush & over hill, valley, & Moor. Late for officers' lecture on Tactical Problem #2. Rushed through dinner & up to Hospital for Sis. Leigh. Went to see The "Sunshine Girl". Awfully funny. Back to Hospital with Sis & over to 15th lines. Had lunch & to bed. Houston down from Witley for few minutes.

Saturday 20 April 1918

All morning on Coy. Drill at school with Y.S. Batt. Coy. Dressed & had lunch at 12:30. McAughey, Forsythe, Hogie & I walked to Tin-Town & took taxi from there to Hazlemere. Took some snaps with Hogie's camera behind "White Horse". Met Dorothy Stewart & Hilda Read. Dorothy & I had dinner at White Horse & then went to the Cinema. Walked through Hindhead & out to Beacon's Hill & got back to camp at 12 P.M. Rained steadily after 6 P.M.

Sunday 21 April 1918

Woke up to find it snowing. Had to hurry to make breakfast table. Church parade by Coy's so I did not attend. On C.O.'s Hut Inspection at 10:30 a.m. Band at Mess at 12:30 a.m. Worked most of afternoon on Map of Ypres district. Had supper at 5:30 & Hogie, Forsythe, McAughey & I caught 6:50 buss to Hindehead. Went into the "Huts" for a few moments & then walked down to Beacon's Hill. Met D. Stewart & went for long walk. Met Hogie on way home. Back to lines about Midnight. 249th boys back from Mytchett Ranges about 2 P.M. Neely over to my hut. All on draft leave next Friday. Noble Leonard makes highest score on ranges.

Monday 22 April 1918

Foggy & cold. More Coy. drill with Coy. from Y.S.B. Worked on Chelsea Paper from 11 to 11:30. From 2 to 5 P.M. making a traverse for town of Shottermill. Much detail to put in & very stiff calculations. Walked from Shottermill to 15th Mess in 25 mts. In time for Mess. C.O. reads us circulars re. bad-cheques etc. after dinner. Saw Sis. Leigh passing school. Saw young lady from London while at Shottermill. Mr. Carter arrives back to hut at 7 K. Had bath & change & felt fine. Hogie & I went to 2nd show at Garrison theatre. "The Blindness of Virtue". Awfully good. Fine Moral. Saw Russ Ferrier. Paid me £2 that I had lent him.

Tuesday 23 April 1918

Spent all morning on Coy. Drill with Y.S.B. Coy. Had sketch maps handed back to us corrected & marked. Got 88% on Map of Ypres district. Started our traverse of the Shottermill village as a sketch. Missed O.C.'s discussion on Anti-Tank Measures. Dressed & had Mess. Hogie & I caught 7:10 P.M. buss for Hindehead. Had a few minutes in the "Huts" and met Hilda Read & Dorothy Steward near Beacon Hill. Walked around Devil's Punch bowl & over to the "Gibet's Cross". Walked home got to room about 11 P.M.

Wednesday 24 April 1918

Beautiful bright day. School all out on all day Map march from Seven Thorns Hotel to Blackdown east of Haslemere. Hogie & I start out & after about a mile met up with Costigan & Smithie of 17th Reserve. Four of us got lost about 3 miles south of our proper route. Went through Fernhurst. Had lunch there at the Red Lion Inn. Got to Blackdown about 1:30 just as bunch were leaving to return. Started on return route & this time got too far north & landed into Haslemere. Had lunch at Corner house. Walked to station & got taxi to camp. Dressed & went to farewell mess dinner for Col. & Mrs. Cross. Col. Rattray & Dan McKay there. Splendid speeches.

Thursday 25 April 1918

Bright & Warm. Hard tug to get up. Started for school but decided to wait at 15th till time for Court of Enquiry at 17th. Went there at 10 a.m. Major Ryder & Norm McLean handling court. Back for lunch. Coy. Drill exam started at school. Finish my evidence before court about 3 p.m. Worked on Shottermill Traverse sketch till 5 K. Thunder & Lightning & fearfully heavy rain while at Mess - girls failed to show up for show at Garrison. Hogie & I went & thoroughly enjoyed it. "Peg O' my heart." Back to work on sketch. Stayed at it till 1 a.m. Had letter from Mrs. Jean Hendry at Forfar. Asks me to come up on leave.

Friday 26 April 1918

Bright & Warm. Examination in Coy. Drill at area school continues. I was last man to be examined. Coy. handed to me all upside down & inside out. Had fine talk from Col. Rattray. Wrote our Chelsea paper in the afternoon. Time much too short. Nearly all had only finished two of the five questions when time was up. Tomorrow our last day. Pickett & Monteith back from leave. Home by 4 P.M. Hogie & Forsythe went down to Haslemere for evening. I wrote Dad long letter.

Saturday 27 April 1918

Beautiful warm day. Went to school for last time. Sgt. went over our papers. Got 54% only on Chelsea final paper. Finished my evidence at court of Enquiry before Major Ryder. Home & dressed before dinner. Up to men's Mess at noon. Hogie, Forsythe, McAughey & I took taxi to Haslemere. Town fearfully dead. Had supper there & walked up to camp. Called to see Sis Leigh but couldn't find her. Bought puttees and rubber soles. Over to McLeans room for while. Saw Archie Smith. Had fine lunch in mess at 9:30.

Sunday 28 April 1918

Raining when I woke up. To Church parade by company. Padre preached splendid sermon "Can a man [?] God". Wrote Eva long letter. Capt. Leban gives me gentle reminder to be present on all parades etc. [?] on Hogarth. Dressed & went up to Chase Lodge & had tea with "Sis" Leigh, Stayed there for 1½ hours. In order for anti-gas course tomorrow. Went down to Sisters' Mess with Leigh. Too late for supper at 15th. Officers back from Mytchett. Had great time. Bed 10 P.M.

Monday 29 April 1918

Fine & Warm. All day [?]. Went to gas course at 8 a.m. Lieut. Cunningham in charge. Spent morning taking notes & was issued with Box Respirator. Spent five minutes in tear gas afternoon. O.K. [?] and mask drill until 9.30 p.m. Harold Wadge at Mess. Worked on my gas notes for while & Lieut. [?], Capt [?] & I went up town [?] for new French [?]. Met Lt. Argue & got taxi back. Classes on Monday & Thursday nights 7.30 to 9.30. Back and worked on gas till 10.30. Over to Mess & had supper with waiters & Forsythe. Bed 11.45 P.M. Big Whist drive on in the Mess ante-room.

Tuesday 30 April 1918

Breezy & fresh. Took notes all morning on anti-gas. Had smell of various gases used. In afternoon had time tests in adjusting the box Respirator. Wore it for 25 minutes & walked up & down hills. After 5 K when home. Went to lecture in Mess Room. Some Brigadier at Mess. O.C. on leave all day. Worked on gas notes all evening. Had lunch in Mess about 9:30 P.M. Back to gas notes again. Bed 11 P.M. Carter still out.

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Original Scans