Drills as usual. At it all day. Stayed in at night and read. Nearly fainted in the lecture room when the Major was speaking of the circulation.
Up at 5.30. No parades after 9 o’clock inspection. Went to the ramble after dinner. We went to a farm house in the Worrall1 district. There two soldiers, 3 women†, Miss Inmore2 and some other people. Had rain at night, but we had a fine time. I walked home with Miss Inmore. Called in at a Mr Taylor’s during the rain and played and his daughters sang. With Hillsbro’ Wesleyan Church Guild Ramble.
Up at 5.30 again. Went with Wesleyan church parade to a church near to the barracks. Enjoyed service. It reminded me of home. Stayed in in the afternoon, but went to the same church at night. A lady spoke to me before and after the service, and as I was coming away a young lady came up to me and asked me if I would go to the minister’s house to supper. I went with other 3 chaps. We had a pleasant time and I got my hand in play the piano. At Mr Inmore’s1 house first time. Invited to a ramble tomorrow.
Finished drilling at 1 o‘clock. Stayed in in the afternoon, and went into town at night with Spink. Came back to the Soldiers’ Home and then to the barracks again.
Up at 5.30. Nearly late for first parade. Paraded 3 times before dinner. Met * when the quartermaster came along with a lot more chaps. Received pay in the afternoon, 3/-, and finished early. Went over to the Soldiers’ Home last thing. Received 3/-1 pay.
3 shillings = 15p; about £15 in 2015. For comparison, basic pay for a National Service private in 1952 was 4/- a day; about £40/week in 2015. ↩
Got up at 5.30. Passed doctor, Captain Seely, and got uniforms and coat. Half day off. Cricket match on the parade ground. Had good dinner and tea. Went into town at night with two soldiers from our room. We went into a pub and they came on with me. Wrote home. Went round the town a good bit. Went to bed about 10 o’clock.
Got up about 7 o’clock. Got dressed and had a run over Charlie’s latest songs. Father, Charlie, Marmie and Uncle Jack saw me off. Left by 9.35, changed at Durham and Rotherham. Between Durham and Rotherham there were two men with a deserter in the compartment. Some trouble at York with a dog in the carriage. Arrived shortly before 2 o’clock. Went into the town and had dinner, then went on car to find the barracks. Forgot parcel at the café. Got to the Territorial place first. Arrived shortly1 before tea. Other two recruits with me. A Scotsman and a Sunderland lad called Williams. Had a shave and * tea in the barracks, and went into town at night with Williams. Got bedding and room.
Unless “shortly” should be “Sheffield”, which it really doesn’t look like, ALL seems to have forgotten to mention that it was Sheffield (the Hillsborough Barracks) that he had gone to.
Hillsborough Barracks was converted for commercial use in the late 1980s, but many external features were retained. The main focus of the development is a Morrisson’s supermarket. ↩
↑ The diary, hitherto written in ink, is mainly in pencil from here to mid-October. ↑
At work as usual. Mother not well first thing. Busy all day. Bid goodbye to the people at the office last thing. George Crawford gave me a Testament.
Mother Got new purse, new glass1, new nail brush, handkerchiefs, and so on. Went to the station at night and made enquiries about the train. Willie Whittaker up. Went to bed late. Had a bath.
“Glass”, if correct, is probably “mirror”. ↩
At work as usual. Decided to go into R.A.M.C. Met Tommy in the morning going to the recruiting office to join the R.G.A1. I went down at night. Waited from 7.30 until 9.45. Waiting for over an hour for Major Burn to swear us in. Met Uncle Jack outside and he waited for me. Went down to Grandmother’s and bid her, Aunt Esther, Mrs Whittaker and Lily goodbye.
Sworn in at the Recruiting Office. Received 1/112. 11 of us sworn in, including Willie Reed. Went to bed late.