World War 1 Letters to a Mate from Bert..Part 2

Here are four more Letters from Bert…if you haven’t read Part 1 yet please scroll down and read these first as I have put them all in date order………….

This is who the letters were sent to, my Uncle Dan, chap on the right with his Donkey and Cart

 10/7/1916

Pte A Gibbs B Coy
13179 6 Platoon
B.E.F.

Dear Mate

Just a line in answer to your kind and welcome letter which I was very please to receive on Sunday and Dan glad to hear that you are still in the best of health as it leaves me at present.
Well mate I hope the weather is getting a bit better as it is here and I can assure you we can do with it out here to get the job over but I think we have gave them one to get on with this last two weeks. Well mate I am sorry to say that I cant send you a photo as I have not had one sent from home yet but I am expecting one sometime this week so I will send you one as soon as I get them and I have heard from Mick last week but he did not put his address so I wrote back to his mother. Well I think this is all for this time and must now close.

From your Old Mate Bert
……………………………………………………………………………………………..
Pte A Gibbs
6 Plat B Coy 13179
B.E.F.
18/7/1916

Dear Mate

Just a line in answer to your most kind and welcome letter which I was very pleased to receive on Tuesday. Well Mate we have just done some eight days in the trenches and am now out for a rest as they call it but I expect we will be in the trenches every night on working parties so I think you are just as well in as out but I am glad to say that we had it a bit quiet this last time as we have got the Blighters well in hand and they know it so it pays them to be careful of what they are doing. Well mate I am sorry to hear about Ted Woods brother and I feel very sorry for him but I expect his mates will have their own back with them. Well mate I am writing home again today for those Photos so I will send you one as soon as I can get them. Well I have heard from Mick only once and that was about three weeks ago but have not heard since and I am glad to hear about Alf Turner and only wish I was him and back at the Old P.D or Martin as it is ok out here but one thing we have got is plenty of mates in the Trenches as regards lice and rats and I can tell you that they keep you company especially when they start trying your overcoat on and you dont get a wash all the time you are in as you cant get enough water to drink let alone wash. Well mate remember me to all the boys and L.J at home and I hope you see the Surreys big victory in the last weeks Pictoral. Well I think this is all for this time and must now close hoping to hear from you soon as possible

From Your Old
Mate Bert
……………………………………………………………………………………………
Posted on 19 July 1916

Tuesday
Pte A Gibbs
13179 B Coy 6 Plat
B.E.F.

Dear Dan

Just a line in answer to your kind and welcomed letter which I was very please to receive and glad to hear that you are going on alright and glad to say that I am still alright as this letter leaves me at present. Well Dan I wrote to Mick but I did not know what he was in so I wrote to his home in Bulow Road so I expect his mother will send it on to him. Well Dan I am glad that you see L.J and I am glad to say that things are going on alright up till now and I hope they always will but I dont think much of it as it aint a bit like London. Dear Dan the last time I was home I saw L.J but I did not speak as I was with the bird from Lancaster Road, but that was a long time ago and I had my Photo done with her so I will get one sent from home and I send it to you and will send one to Ted Wood as I wrote to him but did not get an answer but I will get one this week some time but if you see him dont forget to tell him to write and if you can get Micks address dont forget to send it as it would be quicker for me to write to him than to his home first. Well I think this is all for this time and must now close my short letter hoping to hear from you soon as possible but when you write dont forget to 6 Plat B Coy and the regiment as we are not allowed to put it ourselves but cheer up as the war will soon be over

From Your
Old Mate
Bert

Will write more when I come out of the Trenches
………………………………………………………………………………………………..
Posted 28 July 1916

Pte A Gibbs B Coy
6 Plat 13179
B.E.F. France

Dear Mate

Just a line in answer to your kind and welcomed letter which I received on my return from the Trenches where we did not have such a fine time as the people at home think the tommy’s have but glad to say we never had many casualities but very sorry to say that we lost two of our best lads out of our platoon and one was George *i*** who I think you know. Well Mate I expect we have to look at the best side and waite our chance. But this time we went in it rained nearly all the time so you can guess we were in a fine state the time we got out but cheer up I think we are out for a long rest this time and I dont think none of us is over anxious to get back in them as some of those back at home reckon Well mate I will send you a photo as soon as I can get a chance to get one from home I think I have told you all for time and must now close
From Your
Old Mate
Bert
…………………………………………………………………………………….
The 13th Battalion fought on the Somme and at Cambrai and Arras
I am still reading their War diaries, but this small excerpt from them shows how interesting they are and definately worth a read if you have the time :
“13th July 1916
A small party from B Company placed boards in the enemy’s wire, giving news of the latest advance of the Allies. Contents roughly as follows..
In West
Progress on the Somme-english have taken 6000 prisoners and the French 9,700, over 80 guns and many more machine guns and Minenwerfer.
In East
Russians have captured 228,000 Austrians and 2,700 in the district of RIGA also 12,000 Germans near Rovel”

Hopefully more tomorrow in Part 3…………………..
Till next time then………………………………………………………..

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