Up shortly after 7 o’clock. Paraded at 9. Cleaning waggons until 12 o’clock. Sergeant-major ordered me over Baileul[sic] after dinner1. Gave me five minutes’ notice. Rode down in car with Bromley. A splendid place. Washed and cleaned up in the afternoon and then went to the concert. A very good concert. Good orchestra. First half turns and second half “dramatic fragment.” Looked up news at night, which spoke of heavy fighting. Went to bed late.
Will have to play my cards very carefully. Finished reading Villette2.
“Baileul”: Actually Bailleul (B), 10km SSW of La Clyttte/Klijte (A). As usual “after dinner” means “after lunch”; the move to Bailleul would have been in the afternoon, not the evening. ↩
Up at 7 o’clock. On working party at 9. Busy in the end place with Harvey again. Worked pretty hard. Sergeant MacDonell in charge. Returned about 5 o’clock. Went to Locre† at night to the Bible class. Saw Sandwith there. Had very good little meeting. Went down with Holman.
Up at 7 o’clock. On working party at 9 o’clock. Very busy all day in the end breaking through into the old passage. The Germans shelling a battery behind us and we watched shells falling very thickly. Returned about 5 o’clock. Sergeant Watson in charge. Had short walk at night with Holman.
Up at 7 and on duty about 7.30. Cleaned things up for the visit of the G O C.1 He arrived shortly after 3 o’clock and inspected the place. The hospital satisfactory. Went in the car to Reninghelst. Just too late for the concert so went into the Y M hall and heard a band concert by the Royal Fusiliers band. Called in on the way back and had eggs and coffee. Sergeant Powell and Holman with me. Got back at 8.45.
Up at 7 o’clock and on duty as usual. Went with Harvey to a bible class at La Clytte Y M at night. Very nice little meeting. The leader reminded me of Mr Mullins1. He took our names and made a big fuss.
Mr Mullins: A preacher (possibly lay preacher) from the South Durham Street United Methodist Free Church in Sunderland, where ALL had been a member prior to joining the RAMC. Mr Mullins, Esther and Arthur Mullins are all mentioned occasionally throughout the diaries. ↩
Took over duties in the hospital at 7.30 in the morning. Had a fairly easy day. One man with a foot off died during the morning. We were very sorry for him. Captain Strickland tried hard to save his life.