The one about trips

18 July 1957

My dear Len and Margaret

This is Thursday am and Dad is getting ready to go and see if the town is still standing up also to see if his friends are all well.

This is a wintry a.m., cold, windy, cloudy and I’m almost certain rain will come very soon now. I’m hoping the boys will have better weather to fly over on Tuesday[1]. However it’s not a very long journey from Southampton. Are both boys getting excited? We are all looking forward to seeing them. They are lucky to be coming just in time to see the Queen and the Battle of Flowers. If the weather is good they will enjoy both fetes.

We hope the Queen will have better weather on Thursday than what it is today.

Otherwise the poor soul will have to fly, she being such a bad traveller I don’t think she would risk to come on the boat this rough weather. Some say according to the weather she might land at Bouley Bay. If so she will find herself at the pier, also if she comes by air. They are now decorating the town, I think they are on the slow side with it, they only have one week to be quite ready. The crowns they are putting in different places are very small. You could almost put them in a net bag.

Yesterday Dad and I were having tea at Margaret’s. Kay, Arthur, Mr & Mrs Le Rossignol came there to spend the evening. We had a very nice time altogether, they all seemed to have enjoyed themselves. Henry seemed to be the top speaker of the evening, the more he spoke the more he found to speak about. There was no slack moment with him. Margaret and I were tickled to hear him. Charles happened to hand him a paper to read about something. Poor Henry kept this paper rolled up in his hand after he had read it and he kept flying this paper about as he spoke. He was thoroughly wound up last evening for talking. I think he wanted to put it on a bit because Arthur was there. Anyway it all made a very pleasant evening. it was about 11.30 when we left there. When we got back the girls (Doreen and Roselle) were just going to bed. They said they were not going to wait for us any longer.

Now listen to this, we had planned to go to St Malo today. M & C were coming with us, but on Tuesday eve, Kay and Arthur came, they remained a little later than usual, that meant we were late going to bed. Dad decided that evening when we were going to bed, that as we were going to Margaret last night, that meant 2 late nights, that it was better not to go to France today. HE said I would be too tired. Of course I agreed, I went to Margaret yesterday morning as usual, I told her we had decided not to go to France. I think she felt a little disappointed, because her passport is finished, so she had to get a form with her photo on which acted as a passport. However there it was. I also told her the weather was not promising very good. As it has turned out today, if we had gone we would have had a good shaking.

Anyway, this is the funny part about it. When I came downstairs this morning for breakfast, first thing Roselle told me, or rather I should say the first thing she asked me was how were you going to France today? I looked at her. The ordinary way I said. Well, she said the Brittany does not go to France today, she goes to Guernsey to fetch the passengers to bring them to Jersey for the Bouley Bay hill climb which is taking place this afternoon. When I told Dad that he was a fine one trying to make us go to France when there was no boat to take us, he fell speechless. He has the paper telling him all about the day trips from Jersey to St Malo & Channel Islands. Well, he said, it was on his paper that there was a trip today, he got his paper and he found out that he had looked in the month of June instead of July. I told him we can’t depend on anything he tells us. I told him how silly. We would have looked well on the pier the four of us going to the Brittany which was not there, she had left at 6 o clock. I said there would have been a nice bit about us on the Evening Post today.

Dad says if it’s fine on Sunday we will go. I don’t think it will be fine, the weather is very unsettled, the glass is going down. If we go I don’t think M & C will come with us, by choice C does not want to go to France on a Sunday, neither do I. According to Father there’s another trip on 15th August which is a Thursday, also one on the 5th Sept. No need to ask if he will make sure next time if there is a boat to take us.

We went to Les Augerez on Tuesday. Uncle was quite talkative, but still does not go out, neither does he shave, though his whiskers had been cut a bit. He still bothers Auntie Blanche with the cooking.

Roselle is starting to be busy with stocktaking. She finds stocktaking very tiresome. The wind is now getting stronger and spoiling the flowers. The sea is green, not very good, this would be a trip for the basins to come out.

Here I am again. I must hurry with this letter for if anyone turns up. Kay and Arthur will not be coming. They are going to some friends. Margaret and Charles may come. It’s nearly cold enough for a fire but we must be careful with the coal. At the end of this month coal will be £10 a ton, we will have to be very careful with it this winter. All the same this is a shocking price for coal. Everything is going up, even the postal rate is also going up from October. I will have to reduce my letter writing.

Mr De La Haye’s health has got worse lately. He is resigning from the office in September. His heart is very bad, it only ‘ticks’ instead of ‘pumping’. I don’t know if they will have any difficulty in finding a suitable man, they will if they are not prepared to pay a proper wage. They will need a man of a certain age, so naturally he will expect a decent wage, but you know how mean the Jersey Mutual is and has always been.

You will notice on the weekly EP the chosen Miss Battle of Flowers. She is Miss Jean Oeillet, she belongs to the Green Room Club. I think she had a bit of support from them, this always means a lot in such cases. At the same time she may not have been the prettiest girl here although it’s not only beauty that counts, there must be personality. I’m not sure if I’m right in saying that her father is a hairdresser in Sand St.

Doreen is out to tea, Roselle will be going to a show, there will only be Darby and Joan left. I guess by the time I write your next letter we will have had the pleasure of seeing your sons. Of course next Thursday being the Queen’s day, I don’t know whether I will be prevented from writing, if so, you will understand. I will do my best, can’t do more.

This must be all for today. I will now get the weeklies ready for the post. Hope you are all on best form

Lots of love from all

Mother xxxx


[1] My brothers John and Paul were going to stay for a week. It was while we lived in Oxford so Southampton was the best airport for them.