Archive Content: Letter home to aunt and uncle

  • Item Type
  • Owner of Item
    Ann James
  • Surname
  • Forenames
    William James
  • Rank
    Second Lieutenant
  • Regiment
    Royal Welsh Fusiliers
  • Battalion
  • War
    World War One
  • Area of Conflict
  • Date of Letter
  • Title
    Letter home to aunt and uncle
  • Description
    William James Williams, of Porthcawl, Glamorgan, was educated at Llandovery College and worked for the Council in Cardiff before the war. In 1915 he enlisted as a Private in the 28th London Regt, Artists’ Rifles, and was commissioned as a 2nd Lt. in the (16th Bn) Royal Welsh Fusiliers in 1916. He received the Military Cross in July 1917 during the Battle of Pilckem Ridge, for taking command when his company officer was wounded, rallying his men and showing steadfastness under heavy fire.
    2/Lt Williams died in September 1917, and is buried in Erquinghem Cemetery, France.

  • Total Number of Pages
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  • Transcription 1
    16th R. Welch Fusiliers.
    B.E.F .
    France. 24.4.17
    My dear Aunt and Uncle,
    I have been going to write you on several occasions, but something has prevented my doing so
    First of all I want to congratulate you on your recent addition to the family, and I sincerely hope both you and the boys are getting on well. I am now looking forward to the time when I shall have the pleasure of seeing the boys. I am so glad you have christened one Willie. If I am right you are the first of our family to have been blessed with twins.
    I dare say you knew that I have been in Hospital. I have been discharged since Easter Saturday, and am feeling quite well again. The rest at hospital was to me a godsend,

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  • Transcription 2
    but I am not looking forward to being there again, as its far too monotonous. I was ill for two months.
    It was extremely strange returning to the trenches after such a nice rest. Things in general in the trenches are quite good, except for shells knocking about, which we always have, and manage to dodge.
    What do you think of our recent successes? It won't take very long again before we'll all be home again. Everyone here seems to think that before the summer is out the war will have ended. I sincerely hope so, as this life is far too monotonous.
    I was very sorry to hear that Davy had met with an accident, and glad to hear he is making satisfactory progress.
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  • Transcription 3
    Ogmore Williams is very close to where I am, but I have only seen him once, it's very hard to get away from the trenches to go anywhere.
    When you are better you ought to take a little airing at P'cawl. I'm sure Mam would be pleased to have your company.
    The weather here has been very bad indeed, only a few days ago we had snow, and it's very cold, especially in the trenches. Today is the only fine day we've had since I came out, the sun is simply boiling hot, you ought to see all the Tommies out in the open having a good old sun bath, and sleeping. (Of course when not on duty).

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  • Transcription 4
    Well I must now conclude. I am in the pink, and as happy as can be... I sincerely hope that by the time this arrives to you, you will be quite well again.
    Love to all the children.
    I remain,
    Yours sincerely,