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Date: April 20th 1915

April 20th 1915

My Dearest Kate

Many thanks for papers of March 21st & 22nd received today. I was in hopes there would be a letter from you but was disappointed again. The papers had been held back until we came out of the trenches the other mail being all English. The letters are delivered in the trenches but the papers & parcels are kept back until we come out. We were in for five days this trip & are out now for four day's rest unless anything happens that we are wanted in before the four day's are up. We had several casualties this time in from shell fire which was pretty heavy at times. I guess you have seen the casualty list before now so this will be no news for you. We had to keep under cover by day to avoid being shelled too much Most of the casualties happened on the first day when we were all out in the trench but after that we all hid ourselves from dawn until sunset. One of our boys had a very lucky escape. He was in the dug out when a shell came right in on it & smashed the whole thing up His ammunition on one side was hit & exploded (he was wearing it on the equipment) several holes were made in his hat the heel of his boot torn off & his bayonet twisted all up, his valise which was laying beside him was all torn to bits & he himself was lucky enough to come out of it wounded which will give him a few weeks holiday but he probably wont be able to sit down a while without lots of cushions. You would laugh to see us in our shelters. the one I was in was about eight five with a hole for us to crawl through. There were four of us in it & as we have to wear our equipment the whole time we are in the trenches you can guess how wer were packed in & we had to stay there almost fifteen hours out of 24 our only [?] allowed out at a time to make tea & get grub for the rest The weather here just now is fine but a little cold at nights but we didn't notice that so much as we were working all the night that being the only time we could do anything to the trenches. One of the engineers had one [?] over on him the last night we were in. They were digging around there & one of the boys came across a corpse which he promptly left as he couldn't stand the [?]. The engineer came along & saw the arm of the corpse & thought it was one of his party taking a rest so he shook him up & told him to come out of it as they wanted to dig there but "never a word spoke he" Judging by the smell around the trench I think there must be a lot of soldiers buried there within a few inches of the surface (but they are not British) I hope dear that you have been getting my letters more regularly by now. I am afraid some of them must be lost as it was over a month ago since I got your last letter saying you had only received one letter & card from me since I got your last letter saying you had only received one letter & card from me since leaving England so that I was expecting one from you today to say that you had got some more from me. I hope to get one from you tomorrow to that effect. I haven't seen the Paymaster yet & I dont suppose we shall have him around this time as we are not allowed out of our billets on account of being so near the firing line so we dont need any money here. Our billet this time is a cowshed with stalls in it and just room enough for two in a stall "This is the life" I suppose you are still keeping a holiday & I hope you are enjoying it & having good health. I am pleased to say that I am in the best of health & getting lots of fresh air these day's. I think this is all I have to say this time dear so will close with heaps of love & kisses & kind regards to all friends

Will write again before we go back in the trenches

I remain
Your Ever Loving

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