Dec 18th 1916
Dear Mr.Irwin:- Yours of Nov. 20th. reached me to day and was pleased to hear from you. Letters have been coming in a regular shower these days and now I am trying my best to turn the tide and answer some of them. Have received many kind letters from Norwood as a remembrance. Yesterday I received letter from Mr Garlick he I at present in hospital at Ramsgate getting around with the aid of crutches. I do not think he will get to the front but may be returned to Canada. Norwood has been foremost in my mind and no wonder for we have some of the Boys as members of the 21st. Fred Kempt was the first. I met Allo Billy, a hand extended in the dark, and then the discovery. Arthur McKenty came next and finally Arthur Searight. Of course I know all the news of Norwood and they all the experiences of the Ypres salient and the Somme so we spend the evenings when out at rest camp. The Boys have made two or three trips in the line and have got over there trench scare and are behaving like Veterans. Kettridge is at present in England. What part I do not know and that may account for you not receiving any word from him. Oh so our luck to spend Christmas Day in the front line but we shall be out at Rest for New Year’s Day so we shall not be too bad. Rumours going round we shall get Turkey for dinner that day. Jack Rathwell I hear will be with the 21st at present he has not made his appearance- he is behind the lines a few mile away.
Your papers on the Scouts at the fair was very interesting and it does the Scouts credit to have such a capable Scout-master to bring them to such efficiency. I can just imagine the “March Pass” to the grounds and the excitement it caused. And the Brigadier General with his chest swelled out nearly bursting his tunic, his head erect, and looking stern.
All Brigadiers look stern. Anyhow here a clap for the wee lads from one who is in the game. The Deer Hunt paper was just as interesting although on a different [?].
I have just 10 more letters to write so I must close for this time. Give my Kind Regards to all the Folk. Remember me to Mrs Irwin and family. Wishing you all the Compliments of the Season.
I Remain Yours Sincerely