Up at 6.45. Very busy first thing. Kept pretty well at it all day. Saw some new triplanes up for the first time. Did a bit French. Harvey and Ross called. I walked through the town with them to see about Billy Truman’s watch. Billy and Ross lance-corporals1. Fine day. Saw 112th stretcher bearers go up in battle order2.
Billy and Ross had presumably been promoted to Lance-Corporal from Private.
ALL himself had been promoted to Lance-Corporal on 7 September 1915. He had, probably mistakenly, reverted to Private on deployment to France on 31 May 1916 and claimed in a 1976 interview to have been “the only man in France who went through the war Lance Corporal acting Private with Lance Corporal’s pay.” He regarded this as a rather comic reversal of a situation, common probably in 1914-18 and certainly since then, in which men were temporarily given the responsibility of a higher rank without being paid for it: “acting unpaid” Lance-Corporal, Corporal or Sergeant. ↩