SUNDAY, AUGUST 20th

An active day picking up the threads and arrears. Am favourably impressed with the 14 new subalterns—one or two valuable acquisitions. Watson, an expert Lewis gunner, was in Sussex Yeomanry. Am taking him on as L.G. Officer and Intelligence, while Ensor and Menaul are away. He will live at H.Q. as we are a small party, with Pratt gone and Padre away. We got the rain Friday and Saturday all right. Today is pleasant, fine, warm but a drying wind. I asked the Gen. if the King wrote, after the Push, and he said “Yes—a charming letter”, but he dared not show it for fear it should get into the Press. I fear it’s impossible to extract people out of the other Battalions. It’s hard enough to get one’s own back. We got into the line again tomorrow night. Walked round and had a long talk with Ricardo—he is only 300 yards from here. Pratt doesn’t go till tomorrow. I shall miss him greatly. The Gen. is immensely proud of the Div. He ran that show for the King the other day very well. There were men there from two other Divs. whose Commanders did nothing. When the King came to our Div. Gen. N. took hold of him, and as he came to each man he read out what gallant action he was there for, and the King chatted and shook hands with each. The Padre was quite pleased really, and greatly impressed with the way the Gen. did it. Ricardo, who was there, told me the same. When he got to the Padre he said “This, your Majesty, is the finest type of parson.” Have sent £10 to Lady Carson’s Fund. Fergie says he has sent you a list of men identified and buried by the Durhams. Any news we get will be sent to you.

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