[The Battalion in reserve at Mesnil—‘Sudden orders to take over line of trenches…one mile north of MESNIL…over the knees in snow and slush…’A’ and ‘D’ Companies remained at MESNIL.’—and Lieutenant Colonel Blacker on a course of instruction at Flixecourt.]

We go back tomorrow. Heard from Fergie today. Two minor casualties only, but fearful delays in supplies, and discomfort in consequences. They’ve got to dump 1½ miles from trenches at 2.00 a.m., and then had to be carried. Will let you know about candles. Hope some have arrived, but any amount will be wanted. Keep sending them and buy socks, always socks. Send all you have and make more. The 1,000 you now are sending only make a pair a man. The Battalion is at its best now. We shall never replace it with finer men. It will break my heart, if I survive, to have it annihilated in a push. Such a day, snow and sleet all day, and N.E. wind. Yes, I felt greatly refreshed by my week here. Kentish is very brainy.

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