January 1st, 1916
Jack and B, just a few lines to let you know I am still here. I have been very sick for the past two weeks with a cold or the good old-fashioned grip, but am getting O.K. again.
Well, Jack, the fever is awful bad here in a lot of the camps, especially the one I was in. We got moved to another camp or I think we would all be dead. I do wish they would send me to the front before I will croak here. We will all die if they don’t move us. We must have lost about 200 so far with fever and pneumonia. It is a hell of a place. Rain, there has not been a fine day here for two months. We are halfway up our knees in mud and water.
Well, we did not have very much of a Christmas. I thought of you all and was saying to myself, I bet your are enjoying yourselves by this time. I was not out of my hut, as I was sick. I did not get Mother’s parcel yet. I do hope I will get it. It is a damn sight worse here than in Southport for grub. I don’t know what is the trouble. We do not get enough to live on, but, Jack, I am standing it pretty good. If I can only keep clear of the fever, I think I will be O.K. I like the machine gun alright and you bet I can make it go. God help the Germans or Turks when we get a few hundred guns on them. They will think hell got loose.
Well, Jack, I will have to close for this time, as I have to parade again. Give my love and best regards to all and kiss the children. Wish you all a Happy New Year.
Address: #3949 Private Lee. G. Darrach, 3/7 Lancaster Fusiliers, Machine Gun Section, Camp 8, Hut 6, Codford, St. Mary’s, Wiltshire, ℅ ⅗ Manchester’s