btsarnia

A tribute to the life and work of Brian Torode

A Slimbridge Romance – The Love Letters of Percy and Florence Barton (1910-1913)

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LETTERS FROM PERCY BARTON TO FLORENCE NOAD

These letters form a fascinating ‘diary’ of everyday events in the Village of Slimbridge, Gloucestershire, during the years leading up to the First World War. During these years, Percy was working for his father at the Forge, across the road from the ancient Parish Church, and Florence was in-service, working at various large houses around the leafy suburb of Clifton in Bristol. From August 1910 she was working as a Parlour Maid for Mrs Mary Louisa Danbury, an elderly lady, of 2 Caledonia Place, until she died and then, from October 1912, she was employed by Mrs. Weston of Number 8, The Avenue, Clifton.

Percy Barton and Florence Noad were both born in the Village and were in the same class at school. Both families were involved with life in this vibrant rural community and their friends and relatives were well-known to each other. Percy was a son of the local Blacksmith, William Barton, and Florence’s own father was a Carpenter and Wheelwright working for Workman’s.

The correspondence ends with their marriage on 21st August 1913 at the Church of St John the Evangelist, Slimbridge, where both had been baptised and where both had rung the bells.

This collection of letters was given to me by my aunt, Marian Barton, shortly before she died in 2008 and I have carefully transcribed them. Please enjoy reading them but do respect my copyright. I have retained my Grandfather’s spelling and syntax but some of the errors may well be typographical. The opening sentences and final greetings are similar for each letter and are, therefore, not repeated.

Copyright reserved: Richard Barton

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To Miss Noad, 2 Caledonia Place, Clifton, Bristol

August 21st 1910, Slimbridge, nr. Stonehouse, Glos. Dear Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I was most pleased to receive. Was glad to hear you was on the right side when I got in as I should have felt sorry for you if you had got in the wrong. I hope you will like your new place but I wish it was a little bit nearer so that I could come and see you once a week. Well when I left you I went straight home. Uncle was there waiting for Millie she was to have been down by ten but it was a few minutes past so I was going to the dancing lawn to find them but I met them coming. Fanny with Billy Bennett and Millie with L. Steel and didn’t seem to care if they got in before morning their excuse was they had been looking after me but came to the conclusion that I had taken you home. Fanny said she could not bring to mind who you was she had not seen you since you was quite a little girl. Mr Carter left next morning for his holidays so I should not think he had time to walk his garden. Now I must close and go to Church glad to say I am in the best of health hope you will enjoy the same. I am Yours Affectionately Percy. Shall be pleased to hear from you when ever you have time to write.

August 28th 1910. Dear Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I was delighted to receive. Glad to hear you still like your new place, and I am quite sure you wont mind a bit of work. Mauds Husband biked up this morning in the rain he thought it would soon clear up when he started but it had not stopped yet so he has gone back by train. I walked to the Station with him so that prevented me from Church. Harry and Maurice went to Berrow today that is twelve miles the other side of Gloucester they were coming back tonight but the weather is so bad we don’t much expect them till morning. Mabel came home last Saturday and stayed till Wednesday evening she had the shortest holiday of all. If the weather gets better I am thinking about biking to Bristol next Saturday evening stay the night with Maud and Sunday I shall try to see you in the afternoon. I hope it will be your afternoon out and I would try and meet you on the Bridge and any time that would suit you. I have never been over Berkeley Castle but I hope to have the pleasure to with you some day. The little pups are getting on fine now. I must close hoping to see you next Sunday…

Sept 5th 1910…Thanks for your letter received. Glad to tell you I arrived home safe. I got back to Maud’s place about ten minutes past one, it was such a lot nearer the way I went back, they seemed quite surprised to see me back so early, of course they though I had not seen the young lady but I was very pleased to tell them I had and had spent a most enjoyable time and I can say I don’t remember ever having a walk that I enjoyed so much as the one I had with you over the Downs. Well I left for home just after five thinking to get home early but I was lucky enough to take the wrong turning and when I enquired for the Gloucester Rd, I was told it was a very long way round to it, so I kept going till I came to a place called Warmley then on I went to Chippen Sodbury and Wickwar so did not find any of the Gloucester Rd till I came to Stone then I knew my way and soon finished my happy outing. Now I must close with love to you…

 

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Number 2, Caledonia Place, Clifton

Sept 14th 1910…May thanks for your letter which I was very pleased to receive. The fine weather now seems to have gone it has been raining nearly all day here. I went to Cam Church Parade Sunday there were crowds of people there they had two bands and the Dursley boy scouts and Church lads brigade followed. I went to Church Sunday evening and I never did see such a few people there, it is our harvest thanksgiving tomorrow evening the following Sunday. We are thinking about digging our potatoes at the cross roads this week if the weather clears up I see your people have all theirs done. I had the misfortune to have one of my pups killed this morning. Maurice was putting them in their house and was careful enough to let a big iron fall on it and it was only yesterday I sold this particular one to Mr Burnett. Mrs Silas Workman at the Patch died yesterday. Father is having a weeks holiday at Berrow to see if the change will do him good as his Back still keeps painful. Now I think I must close with love to you…

Sept 26th 1910…Glad to hear you got the few pears alright sorry I had no better ones to send you but will get some for you later on. I was quite a good boy last Sunday went to Church three times. It is Upper Cam Harvest Festival to day. Harry has been up this evening he never did see so many people at a Church. I thought there was a lot of people at Slimbridge Church but he said there was twice as many at Cam. Bert came home last Saturday but had to go straight back Sunday evening we had a telegram from him yesterday saying he was coming home he has a very bad abcess in his right armpit so I expect he will be home for a fortnight. The pig trade still keeps good I bought five stores last week. Mr Smith at Moorend had a big hay rick on fire last week at the new-Grounds I went down to see it last Sunday the Dursley Fire Brigade men were still at work at it, the rick was valued at £200. Now I must close as it is getting late with my fondest love to you…

Oct 2nd 1910…How kind of Mrs King to enquire about me I thought they seemed very homely sort of people the little I saw of them it is nice for you I should to have such friends. Bert has now had a week here, his arm seemed to be going on so well the early part of the week that he thought he would be able to go back yesterday but Thursday it got worse and he went to see the Dr. Friday and was told that he was run down and would be very foolish to think of starting work for a while. This is the first wet day we have had for a long time, we had a grand September Mr Workman told me it was an old fashion one but I can not remember when that was it must have been before my time. Harry and I have been very busy getting the potatoes out we had a very good lot and sold them to Father. After all was paid for the seed and having some hedging done we had about thirty shillings each for our trouble so I think we done very well out of our little farm. Gilbert has been at Bristol Infirmary nearly a fortnight he came back yesterday he has had a growth in his nose. I have been to Church tonight had a sermon on gambling. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you always…

Oct.9th 1910…Harry is having a holiday at Nottingham he went last Thursday and is bringing his young lady back with him she lives at Dursley but has had a diseased bone in her finger which came from a needle running in it, so she has been staying with her married sister. It is Lower Cam harvest festival today Bert and Emmie has gone up he went out early this afternoon and Mother thought he was only going to take her out for a walk and be back to tea but I knew he was going to go and see Aunty Hadly but did not tell her. I thought the early part of the week that I had caught Berts complaint my left elbow had a small white spot on it which was very sore and it got so red round it and swollen that we kept bathing and pouticing it till last night. I had had nearly two nights without any sleep so I thought it was time to see a Doctor and was told I had a poisoned arm he lanced it and said if I felt well enough I was to see him before ten this mourning or he would have to come to see me but I felt well enough and Father drove over and I can tell you he put me through some punishment he said that he could not think how ever I have used it to do any work I told him it was having the will he said he knew that was ever so much and was quite sure I was not one of the weary willies or you would have been resting. Harry been away I have had to do more than I ought to and no doubt made it a lot worse than it would have been. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you…

Oct 14th 1910…Glad to tell you my arm has gone on remarkable well I went to the Dr. Monday night he thought it was on the mend and I was to see him again Wednesday but the weather was so bad I did not go till last night the Dr Was surprised to see such an improvement I have to use ointment on it now and rest it for a few days and if it does not get worse I shall not want to see him again. It will be some time now before Bert will be able to go back to work his arm is quite alright but he has a very bad abscess on his left jaw he has been using some medicine to try and scatter it but the Dr. could see Monday night that it would not move so told him to go home and hot poultice it every two hours and if it did not break in two days he was to go in and have it lanced it did not break so I drove him over last and he had to go in again this morning at nine o’clock. We hope it will go on alright now it has been a very long time about it has made him look ill. Maud came up yesterday and brought little Len with her he has had the whooping cough but is now got alright so they thought if he came here for a month the change might do him good he does not look to have much the matter with him he very soon asked me when I was coming down to see my sweetheart again. Two more Slimbridge girls were married last week Annie Shipway and one of the Hobbs at the Patch. I have heard that both cases are having too. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you…

Oct 28th 1910…I hope you enjoyed yourself Sunday the weather held up fairly good. I went to the Doctor last Saturday he put a dressing on my arm and I was to see him again in twenty-four hours so I went to him Sunday evening he thought it was going on very well and asked me how it felt I told him it had pained me more than ever but he could not see why it should as it looked so much better, anyhow I had to see him again the next night and as soon as he seen it swollen up and enflamed he said you will have some trouble there. I was to go home and have not linceed poultices on every two hours then the next night I was to go in and have it lanced and I can tell you I did dread that been done, well he put me through some pain doing it as he said it was awful to have anything wrong near a bone and this is right on the side of the elbow bone. After he lanced it he said I was to have hot water bandages on every two hours during the night and he would come and see me in the morning he came and have been twice since. I have to still continue the hot fermentation and rest myself contented that I should not be able to do any work for a while and the worst of it I have to stay in and I am so tired of it. I shall be very glad when its alright again. Its hard lines on old Crippen but I do think hanging is too good a death for him, it must be awful if he knows how many more days he has to live. I should not think Miss Le Neve knew he had murdered his wife or it does not seem reasonable that she would have gone off with him, but it ought to teach her a lesson not to long for another wife’s husband. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you. I am yours always…

Oct 21st 1910…Many thanks for your letter which I am always so pleased to receive was sorry to hear that you have had a cold but I hope by this time you are feeling alright. Maud said there were scarcely anyone but what had colds down their way I hoe they will keep away from Slimbridge. My arm has not gone on at all well this last few days I quite thought it was going to be well by now but it is almost as bad as it was at the start. I went to Dursley last night to see the Dr. but there was such a lot of people waiting to see him so I did not stop and I have been over tonight he put some paint stuff on it and I have to see him again tomorrow night I have had quite a nice walk to Dursley. Maurice broke my bike so I walked and wheeled it to have it mended, it seemed a very long way walking by myself I wished you were with me then it would not have seemed so far. I don’t know when I shall have the pleasure of seeing you again. I almost made up my mind to go to Bristol next Sunday. My cousin Miss Cookley’s brother wanted to go down and I was going with him but I shall not go now but hope to see you before very long. Berts face seems to be going on very well now. I am sending you a few walnuts and apples sorry I could not get you any pears. Now I think I must close as it is getting late. With my very fondest love to you always…

Nov 3rd 1910…Am glad to say my arm is going on very well now. The Doctor told me last Saturday that I ought to think myself lucky if I could use it in a months time but I thought that was not very encouraging as a week seems to me a very long time it does not pain me very much now and the swelling is all gone. I shall have to be careful when I do start work again not to get the third addition the first was bad enough and this has been awful so you may guess I don’t want to know what the third time would be like. Bert is still home but his face is almost well now he is going to see the Dr. tomorrow and he is hoping to have his bandages off for good then he thinks of having a week to nock about a bit before he goes back to work. He has not been out very much having his face tied up everyone wanted to know what he had the matter and his been rather shy “like me” has not shown himself very much. Glad you enjoyed your-self at the concert we never have such delightful events at Slimbridge. Mr Carter does not fall in with that kind of thing like the Riddings did. Uncle came down yesterday and said Millie had rheumatism and was coming home for a fortnight. Maurice drove to the station for her last night she is a little better today. Bert and I were going up this afternoon to see her but it has been so very rough and raining we have not been. Now I must close with my fondest love to you…

Nov 13th 1910…Sorry to hear Mrs King has rheumatic but hope she is better by now. I went up to see Millie last Friday week and was surprised to find her looking so well she said there was not much the matter with her then, but it pained her a fortnight before she came home much more than it did when she came home but thought a change might do her good. She is going back tomorrow they wanted me to stay and have some tea with them but I would not stop so millie would have it that I only wanted to go to write a letter to you and if that was the case she would get me some paper and a pen and ink so that I could do it there but she would not promise to help me so it did not come off. Mrs Merrett has asked me times if I went on to Clifton to see you when I went to Bristol but I would never tell her whether I did or not. She said you was a very nice young lady ‘very superior too’, something different to some of the Slimbridge girls. There was not much going on here with the fire-works. Guy Fawkes day seems to be dying out but there was more going on at Cam. Harry was in Dursley about ten o’clock when the fire bell rung, he said in about ten minutes the brigade was off to a fire at Cam so he followed and it was a big rick but they could not get any water so it was left to burn out. This is another wretched Sunday. Bert is going back tonight start work tomorrow morning. I went to the Doctor last night and have to rest my arm for another week it seems to be going on very well. We shall very soon be thinking about Christmas I suppose you will come home. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you always…

Nov.23rd 1910…I hope you are keeping well through this bad weather, it is awful here again today raining fast it seemed quite a treat to have a fine Sunday and the sharp frosts were to good to last. Slimbridge will be livened up again now there is to be another election, and Mr. Lister is putting up again he really deserves to become M.P. for having so much pluck after trying twice and got beaten I should never have thought of his putting up again. It is thought that the electioning will be gone all over the county and finished up in a fortnight and that will be a very good job. Our people have been very busy getting the swedes down but the rain has stopped them from finishing. We finished cider making last week have not made very much, cider fruit has been very scarce about here this time. Father bought all Mr Tom Hawkin’s fruit and with what grown on our own trees we did not make more than three hundred gallons and last year we made seven hundred so we shall have to sign the temperance. Rosa Carter is gone to a situation at Dursley she went to a place at Dymock and liking it so well she only stayed there a week. I expect work goes a bit rough with her not doing any for so long. I hope I shall like it alright when I start next Monday my arm is nearly alright again. I suppose they have really hanged old Crippen this morning I wonder if he has made any confession. Now I must close…

Dec 7th 1910…Glad to hear that you are keeping well there are a lot of people round here with bad colds. I have been very lucky not to get one yet, but I have not started work with my arm, well I went to see the Doctor last Friday week it was then healed up and seemed quite right. I told him as I told you that I thought of starting work Monday he said do you really think that arm is fit for work. Of course I said I did he said very well come and see me Monday but Saturday it was a bit painful and worse Sunday and when I went in to see him Monday we were surprised to find that it had gathered again, then he said now this is going to take a very long time unless you have it opened but he would leave it to me. I could either have it lanced again or put up with it how it was so I told him I wanted it cured the quickest way, so he lanced it again for the third time of asking so now I hope it will soon be well. I have had some awful wet journeys biking to Dursley and the roads are in an awful plight. I have had a letter from Bert this week and was pleased to hear that his face is quite alright. Electioneering is all the go round here now. Mr. Lister held one of his meetings in the old school room last night. I did not go to hear him speak as my time is in at seven, but the cheering as he left in his motor car was enough to shake the Church. I have no news to tell you this time sorry I have not answered your letter before with fondest love…

Dec 19th 1910. My dear Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I am always so pleased to receive. I hope you are keeping well through this bad weather. What a quantity of rain we have had, it was such an awful rough wind. Friday night it blew a big elm tree across the road right straight for George Spencer’s house a part of Mr Harris barn was blown in and there being so much rain and such a wind the Severn bank burst flooding the whole place. Mr Morgan and Mr Smith were advised to move their things off the ground as they thought there might be danger so Mr Morgan got his things away alright but Mr Smith did not and has about forty sheep drowned and a lot more is expected to die. Our Rector has a pleasure on the Canal so it was borrowed to help save the sheep. I went down to the Patch bridge yesterday to have a look at it and was there in time to see them start off in the boat they rowed from the bridge right down to the bottom of the lane all you can now see is the hedges and tree in all the fields for miles down there besides water. Mr Morgan’s shepherd had fourteen young pigs drowned. There is to be a tea and social concert the Wednesday in Christmas week in aid of having the Church bells repaired perhaps you will be home for that. I went to the Dr. last Thursday for the last time and started work Friday it seems to be quite right now. Our electioneering has been very quiet. Mr Lister was again beaten now I think I must close with my very fondest love to you. I am yours, Percy.

Dec 23rd 1910 (?) My dear Florrie, I must thank you very much for the nice present you sent me. I am very pleased indeed with it also letter, card, and all good wishes. I am sending you a gold brooch I hope you will like it. I will wish you a very merry Christmas and I hope you will have a jolly time shall be pleased to see you if you come home for the new year. What a long time this bad weather is lasting I hope it will soon clear up or it will be quite miserable to get about. Bert, Burland and the girls are coming home for a few days. Walter Thomas is expected home from Canada tomorrow. I don’t think I have any news to tell you so will close wishing you a jolly time, with my very fondest love to you. I am yours always, Percy.

Jan 4th 1911…Pleased to hear that you got back alright it was a short surprising time but I quite enjoyed it. I only wish that I could see you oftener it was much the best for you to go home as I am quite sure they would not have thought much of you, if you had not gone to see them, and some one would sure to have told them if you had not. I hope the next time you come will not be so short and trust that the roads will be cleaner. Mrs. Merrett was down home when I got back she said she did not see me at Church and she thought I had been out courting but she could not think who the young lady could be as Beatrice was at Church and Florrie was not home. She did not know all and I did not tell her. Father was very pleased to see me home early he asked me to be home by nine and I was home before so was extra good. We had sixteen young pigs Sunday night but this cold weather we are having has brought them down to eleven. Alice Merrett paid a surprise visit Monday night went back today. She walked in unexpected but did not bring anyone with her. Mr. Morgan is in a very bad way they had a Specialist to him Sunday night and had to operate at once. He had a twisted gut and if it had been done he would not have lived till morning. The Dr. gave them slight hopes of recovery today. Now I think I must close…

Jan 15th 1911…I hope Mrs King is got better from her Rheumatism by now she seemed such a nice old lady. No doubt you have heard of the sad death of Mr. Morgan he died last Sunday morning and was buried Thursday. I never did see so many people at a funeral. Old George Nicholl is still lingering on. Bill has been a regular brute to them this last week his poor old mother was crying out murder at two o’clock Friday morning. I have had some bad luck with my two sows they had sixteen young ones between them and I have only three living. Father’s luck is better he has thirty with three so I shall have to beg a few off him. We have Henry in bed with a very bad cold he seems to be got weak and run down we had the Doctor to him Friday and he has been again today he said when he gets better he must go for a change so I don’t expect he will do any work for a bit. Father is very pleased my arm is got alright as he said he don’t know what he should have done if both of us was laid up together. It is Leonard Smith’s wedding day tomorrow the Rector’s groom is acting best man. I did not think he would ask me as I never would accept any of his invitations. Now I will close trust you are in the best of health as it leaves me at present…

Jan 29th 1911…I fully made up my mind to come and see you before now but as Harry gets no better I shall have to give up all thoughts of having a week end for a while. I am so pleased you came up when you did. Harry stayed in bed for a whole week and never spoke of getting up. He got up one day in the week and as been out for several short walks with Walter Thomas. Some time ago we were shoeing a very awkward horse and Harry got thrown against the doors. Whether it is from that or an influenza cold we don’t know but the Dr. said his brain was effected and let him go on ever so well he would not be fit for work for six or perhaps twelve months. It is making an extra bit of work for me and a big trial for us all as the Dr. told us he was not safe to be left by himself. We have Mabel coming home next Saturday and I am sure Mother will be pleased to see her come, as it is more than ones work to be looking after Harry. There has been another death at Slimbridge a Mr. Short. They have not been here long and was living in Miss Hathaways house. Percy & the Miss Wherretts concert is to take place next Thursday. I don’t think I shall go as I have been going to Dursley for medicine two or three times a week and sure enough I shall have to Thursday. Well I will not be long before I come to see you. I am yours always…

Feb 10th 1911…Many thanks for your letter which I am always so pleased to receive. Sorry I have not answered it before but since last writing to you we have had a very sad trial Harry got worse last Monday week and we sent for Mabel to come as soon as possible so she came home on the Tuesday. Well he still got worse and Dr. Brewis said he was out of his mind and ought to be put away at some Asylum but we would not think of doing anything like that and asked him if he thought a Specialist could do any good but he said it would be like throwing money away to have one as he was sure all he wanted was mental doctring and nursing. Anyway Mother said she was not satisfied & asked if he would meet Dr Robert he agreed to that so they both came last Saturday & Dr Roberts was in the same opinion that he ought to be put away & they told us we should not be doing our duty if we did not do it so then we thought we had better & fixed on taking him to Gloucester Asylum Wednesday this we did. Walter Thomas & myself went with him in a fly. On the Tuesday night before he seemed in awful pain & said he should soon be dead so the same morning we took him we sent for the Dr to see if he was fit to be taken. He again sounded him and said the sooner he was there the better it would be for him but he seemed to me like anyone took for death. He did not speak all the way there & when he was there they bathed him and put him to bed & this morning we had a letter saying he passed a very quiet night and died 5.30 next morning from Syncope & Melancholia. We are all awfully upset to think we sent him away just at the very last but we went by the Dr’s orders but neither of them knew his complaint. Mr Workman is making the coffin and going to fetch him from Gloucester tomorrow and the funeral we have fixed for Tuesday. I will now close as it is getting late, with my fondest love to you…

Feb 26th 1911 (black edged envelopes begin)…I am longing to come down to see you and when the weather gets a little more settled my cousin Frank Cookley is going to cycle down with me. Maud has left Brislington and they have taken to a coal business at Barton Hill perhaps you know where that is. They said its only a short distance out of Bristol and they are very anxious for us to see their new residence. Father has been down and Mabel and Walter Thomas went down last Thursday to see them, or more so to get the engagement ring. Walter is leaving for Canada again and I expect in about a year or more Mabel will go out to him. She sends her kind love to you, and hopes to see you the next time she comes home. I think she is going back to her work tomorrow week. She has had a good time home. Bert went back last Sunday night. Poor Harry’s young lady and her sister came down last Sunday. She looks awfully ill and worried. She seems like one lost and keeps saying how she shall miss him. It is really very hard for her as Harry had been going to see her for more than six years, so I don’t wonder at her missing him. I told her it was very hard to think it now but she must try and think that he is much better off now where he is. The Rector had a tea & jumble sale last week to pay a debt on the Church lamps. I think they done very well. I did not go to it. Now I must close with my very fondest love glad to say I am enjoying the best of health. Hope you are the same…

Mar 12th 1911…Sorry to hear of your uncle’s illness but hope by this time he is better there seems to be a lot of illness about just now and really the awful wet weather we are having is enough to make anyone bad. It has been raining nearly all day here. I have been to Church to night but the congregation was very small. I do hope you will keep well. Mabel has had indigestion for several months but has not taken much notice of it until a few days before she was going back to Worcester when she had bad pains at the back of her shoulders then it moved to her chest and stomach. Mother said she had better see a doctor so I drove them over to see Dr Roberts. He said she was not fit to start work and he was afraid if she did not take care, of an ulcerated stomach. He gave her some medicine and she was to see him in a few days she went to him several times but still got worse so last Thursday when I took her over he said she was to go home get to bed and have hot linceed meal and mustard poultices on her chest every two hours and he would come and see her. She is still in bed and the Dr. is coming again tomorrow it is an awful punishment to her to have to stay in bed. We seem to be having more than a share of illness this time I shall be glad when its over. I have never told you that we got Mr. Ellis to take a photo of poor Harry’s grave. The flowers looked beautiful and we thought we should like to have a photo of it. I will send you one as soon as we get them. Now I will close…

March 26th 1911…Sorry to hear your uncle is so ill and no hopes of getting well. Mabel is better I am pleased to say but she does not get on so well as she ought too the Dr. would not allow her to get up before last Monday and then she was only to lie in an easy chair and have her feet up in another, as he said she had badly strained the artery that leads from the heart to the stomach. She is got quite tired of staying up-stairs so long but I expect she will have to stay there a little longer yet. I am sending you a photo of poor Harry’s grave. We have not done much to gardening yet. I don’t think of working the piece of ground at the cross roads this time. Father has George Nicholls garden so between that and having extra work in the shop I should not have much spare time for the cross roads. I have not done any pig dealing lately and have only three pigs three that was poor Harry’s twice he gave them to me but when he said he should never want them again I only thought he was wandering, and never once thought of ever having them. If the weather is not too bad I am thinking of cycling down to see you next Sunday. I think it is your morning out and if I am right perhapps I may have the pleasure of meeting you by the bridge somewhere about eleven o’clock. We are having some cold winds now. Now I must close and get to bed…

April 3rd 1911…Glad to say we got home quite safe and did not get wet. I was pleased that the rain kept off as well as it did while we were having a walk. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and hope to have many more pleasant walks with you. I got back to Maud’s about twenty minutes to two and at two o’clock it began to rain quite sharp. We started for home at six o’clock and landed home at half-past eight. I thought when we had got a short way on the road that we were going to have a wet ride it looked so dark and the rain began to fall in big spots but the farther we got on the better, and we seemed to be leaving the storm behind us. They were quite surprised at home to find we had biked all the way back as they quite thought we should come back by train. I have been to Dursley again tonight for medicine for Mabel. I was surprised to see her down stairs when I got back last night the Dr. had been and said she might come down but was not to go out unless it was quite warm sunshine. She is very glad to get out of the bedroom and in another week or so if she takes care I think she will be getting righr again. I hope it will be fine weather when you have your holidays I shall be anxiously waiting for the twenty first to come to see you again. Well I don’t think I have any news to tell you so will close…Please excuse bad writing.

April 16th 1911…Glad to hear you are coming on Thursday shall be very pleased to see you. I will meet you at the Station if you are coming by the last train. I should not finish work to meet you earlier but if that is too late please let me know. I hope the weather will keep fine a little longer it has been splendid gardening weather lately. We were busy Friday putting up fence we had a lot of work about so Father thought it was a good chance to do some of it. It was the first Good Friday that I remember working all day. I went to Church Friday night and have been to Holy Communion at seven this morning. I am going to Hardwicke Monday. Father has some work to do there so as we are not working in the shop he wants me to help him so I am having working holidays this Easter. I told him you were coming home and I should then want a holiday but I was not promised one. Bert came home last night and is going back Monday night. Fanny is coming home tomorrow but only for a day. There is to be a concert Friday so you will be home for that. I saw Bessie last Sunday night and she was at Church this morning she is looking very well. Our poor old Parson has a fluid on his knee he was brought round to Church last Sunday in a wheel chair and hobbled in on crutches but he is much better today. Now I will close with my very fondest love to you always. Anxiously waiting for Thursday to come…

May 7th 1911…Many thanks for your letter which I was most pleased to receive and to know you got back alright. It was a shame for you to go back to work with such a bad cold I do hope it is quite gone by now. I expect it was missing you that I have caught an awful cold. I first found of it Thursday and I shall be very glad when I can pass it on. I cant think how we got them as we were not standing about unless it was sitting on that stile. I do feel left alone now you are gone back. I hope you will be able to come home for the bazaar I expect it will be a grand day for Slimbridge. They are going to get Mrs Hicks-Beach to come and open it. I put my Haresfield journey off till yesterday I did not enjoy it very much I went quite a different way to what we went. I went through Standish and had to pass the little thatched Cottage we took Mabel too. I was rather lonely taking an old pig and coming back by myself I wished you was with me then it would have been alright. They all think your photo is very good. I am so pleased with it. I don’t think I have any more to tell you this time so will close with my very fondest love hoping your cold is better dear…

May 22nd 1911…Glad to hear you have lost your cold mine has almost left me. I don’t know when Mabel will go to Bristol now she went back to Worcester last Saturday. She went to the Doctor one day last week he said he was sure Worcester did not suit her and it would be very foolish for her to think about going back there to work so she thought she would go back look up her things give notice and leave. The two Miss Vintons came down last Sunday week. I drove part of the way to meet them and took them back at night. They were very anxious to know who the young lady they met me with at Cam was as she was quite a stranger to them and they had not heard of anyone living at Cam by your name. Bert is coming home at Witsun and is bringing his young lady. I cycled to Haresfield Friday night and went to a fair at Cam Saturday. Father and I had a drive round round Purton yesterday morning and I have been to Mrs Foxwell’s sale today. I saw Miss Pick there she said I had grown out of all knowledge and she should have passed had I not spoken and would not have known who I was. I am looking forward to seeing you before long but I have forgot how your Sunday out are but if you will let me know I will arrange with my cousin as I am very anxious to come down when it is your afternoon out…

June 3rd 1911…I am going to cycle to Bristol Sunday morning shall be pleased to meet you by the bridge at the time you stated. I hope the weather will keep fine. Please excuse short scribble all news when I see you…

June 5th 1911…Just a line to let you know I am got home alright. I so much enjoyed our walks wish we could have them oftener. I had no trouble to get back to the Victoria Rooms there was a car just starting for Old Market so I jumped on. Then I took one for Kingswood and was back in the house at twenty to eleven. I hope you did not get in the wrong for been out late. Will said last night that he wanted to get up at five this morning but we were an hour late so we had to get to work sharp. I got his horses ready while he started a fire. I was hurrying all the time hoping to get off bathing but when he came back after taking the horses out he said he had just made an arrangement to drive to Clevedon so I was done out of bathing. He started out about nine and I left for home at ten landing here about ten past twelve. I did not go Berkeley way for the sports it was so awful hot and I thought I could get home and prepare for a days work tomorrow. I don’t feel a bit tired after the journey I expect your legs were stiff this morning after the walks. We have just heard the news of a lot of Cambridge boys going to bathing in the Severn two of them were in and the tide came and took them off drowning them both. I am going to drive Elsie and her intended to the Station tonight.

July 11th 1911… Many thanks for your nice long letter & p.c. which I am always so pleased to receive. It must have been a grand sight when the Bridge was lit up I should very much have liked to have seen it. We had Maud & her twins here a fortnight ago for nearly a week & Mabel has been home for a few days. She is better but nothing like well yet. There was a boat trip from Worcester to Sharpness last Wednesday so Elsie, Mabel & a friend came down but they were only here for a few hours. I wonder if you will be able to come for a trip to Weston or Ilfracombe while the boats are running this time. I shall try to have one but no doubt I shall see you before long then we can see about it. Perhaps I shall come down August Sunday & call at Berkeley show on my way back. I went to Dursley fete last night. I was helping Mr Hawkins with his hay in the afternoon so I did not get to Dursley till half past eight. I never was so much surprised as I was with Aeroplane. Well I did not see it in motion it only rose about a yard off the ground but I was there in time to see some men pushing it out of the field and I thought it really was a grand thing. Jack Goodrich & I started for home about eleven I had a big nail run in my bike tyre & his lamp would not burn so between the two we had to walk back. I hope you are keeping well during this awful hot weather pleased to say that I am…

June 18th 1911… I wished you could have come up for the bazaar, it seemed rather a tame job there was nothing going on like I thought it would be. When the dancing started the tents were closed and all the people had to do was to dance or look on. I thought when I was looking on so long that if you had been here I should much more enjoy a walk. The Rector went to a lot of needless expence hiring tents & different things or it would have done very well as a hundred pounds was taken and expences came to fifty. I suppose we shall be having another grand go next Thursday shall you come up if we were not so busy & I could have two days holiday I should very much like to come down to see you. Millie Merrett has come home for her holidays she very soon wanted to know how you was & when I saw you last. I asked her if her courting was finished up with Lionel but she would not say. He brought a young lady to the bazaar & tonight he is looking after Millie he likes fresh faces rather often. Beaty Carter is home for her holidays she asked me if you was coming up for the bazaar as she had heard I had been writing to you for a very long time and she thought I must have been on very friendly terms with you when I was writing to her. I told her that when I was writing to her I went or wrote to any other & now I write to you I feel the same & told her when I heard she was telling people she would not trust herself with me I though it time to write to someone else. She is going to ask Mr Hawkins who told him as she had never had any cause to say anything like it. She & Emmie are biking to their uncle’s at Eastington and they wanted me to go with them. I refused to go & have been extra good going to Church today. I went to Cam Friday night broke a cog wheel in my bike & had to walk back. I went toa big show at Dursley last night so had to ride my lady’s bike. I wish you were nearer so that you could learn to ride a bike. I will keep the one I have for you to ride when you come home next time. Now I must close hoping you are quite well as it leaves me at present with my very fondest love to you always…

July 30th…I was more than surprised to hear you are thinking about leaving Clifton but anyone don’t want to stay in the same place all their life and I expect you have had your mind on going to an Infirmary for a long time and it will be nearer home perhaps I shall have the pleasure of seeing you oftener. I shall not come down next Sunday as it is so short a time to see you when it is your morning out, but shall come the Sunday after next, that is if you are not home before that, and you will want a rest home before you go to another place. Fanny is having her holidays and will be home next Saturday. What a long time this hot weather seems to last how are you getting on with it. I have been down at Mr Burnett’s shoeing his hunters this last two days and I never felt the heat so much, and it is making water very scarce about we had a thunder storm yesterday but it did not last very long. We had a splendid view of the flying machine Tuesday. I have been bathing in the Canal this week. I can’t get on so well as I could three years ago. Now I must close…Please let me know soon when you will be home.

Aug 7th 1911…I can just say now that my cold is better it was just coming when I came down to see you and this last fortnight it has been awful. The three girls landed back at Worcester Friday & Fanny came home with Nora last night. They have had a fine time & Fan thinks the change has done Mabel a lot of good but she does not seem to get quite herself yet. Our bright boy Lenn has gone home today & Fan is gone to stay with Maud for a few days. Father drove them to Thornbury & Will & the family met them there. I have not been to Church today I had some work to do this morning & tonight I had to look after a sow & a nice little lot of young ones. Father grumbled at me when I bought the sow but now it has thirteen young ones its quite a different tale with him. Now the strike is settled I hope you will be able to come up for the School Treat it’s the first Wednesday in September so I shall be looking forward to seeing you then…

Aug 14th 1911…Just a line to let you know we arrived home quite safe. We got up about five o’clock had breakfast and started for home just after six and we landed here at half-past eight. I think we did very well as there was a strong wind blowing against us all the way. Father told Mother just before we got back that he did not care if I did not get back till night if no horses came but I had not been back long before some colts came so then I had to fall in but I must admit work has not gone very well today. I had no trouble what ever to get back to the trams & was at my landing place at quarter past ten. I only wish I could come & see you oftener as an enjoyable outing like I always have is bound to do one good. I am sending you a few apples & pears. You will want to keep the pears a few days as they are not very ripe. I thought of the apples I was carrying for you soon as I turned the corner. I stepped back but you just shut the door. There has been a sad accident at Coaley Station today a young painter from Staple Hill was working near the signal box when a train knocked him down cutting both his legs off one above & the other below the knee he is only twenty years of age…

Sept 5th 1911…Do try and come up tomorrow tell the old lady it only comes once a year & you always try to be home for it & I am sure she will let you off just for one day. I wish I was down there & I would soon ask her. Fanny will be home & the two Miss Vinton’s are coming down. I was rather surprised to hear of your uncle’s death it must be a great burden off your father’s mind. I am sending you a few pears. Please excuse hurried scribble & do try & come up. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you always…

Sept 17th 1911…Many thanks for your letter which I am always so pleased to receive and to know you got back alright. I was rather surprised when Fanny said they saw you at the Station. It is our Harvest Thanksgiving to day. Bert came home yesterday he has a fortnight’s holiday he will stay here a week & go to Berrow for a week. We both went to Communion at seven this morning & at eleven we started for a bike ride to Morton Valence to see Uncle. Fan wished me to give her love to you she went back yesterday week. If it is your evening out next Sunday & the weather keeps good I hope to see you perhaps you will let me know before then. I shall try & get Bert to come for a ride but if he does not I know the way now. I must now close with my very fondest love to you always & please excuse short scribble. All news when I see you. I am yours lovingly Percy.

Sept 25th 1911…Just a line to let you know we land home quite safely we were out of bed at half past four had some breakfast and was on our bikes at ten past five landing home just at seven. I think this was the best time I have had & I did so much enjoy our walks. Now I must close & fall into work. I feel just fit for it not the least bit stiff…

Oct 9th 1911…I had a fairly good outing at Worcester but I was not there very long, going up by the two o’clock train Saturday & coming back Sunday night. Maurice came with me but he did not come back till Monday night. Mabel & I went out for a walk Saturday night & being a flirt I found a young lady to take me to the Cathedral next morning. She is a friend of the girls & if either of them are away she goes & stay with the other. Bert had to start work last Monday he cycled to Berrow & stayed there till Sunday morning then biked to Worcester had dinner with us then went on to Birmingham. Mabel is much better now but it will be a long time before she gets quite herself again. Times are so bad that I have really sold my old dog seeing an advertisement in the Citizen for a spaniel. I wrote to the place not thinking I should sell it but in two days time I found out that Mr. Burnett knew the gentleman I had written too & he wanted him to have the dog & see if it was any good. I took it down & he was quite pleased with her, so today the gentleman came in his motor & gave me two guineas for her. Mr Neale made me a present of a splendid collie dog it is the one the old gent bought just before he met with his accident he said he could not sell it after his poor father buying it. It is such a large one, but I shall not keep it. The girls said it would not be right for me to sell it being a present but let me see a chance. Leonard Smith wants it but I have sold him two little pigs instead for fifteen shillings but shall have to wait a few months for it. I went to Cam Harvest Festival last night so that is three Sundays that I have not been to Slimbridge Church. I did wish I was with you when it was such a nice day. I was half inclined to start down about twelve o’clock but though if I did I should upset all your other arrangements. I am sending you a few walnuts & apples. Now I must close or I shall tire you to read all this scribble…

Oct 20th 1911…I think you was lucky to have such a nice boat trip I should very much have liked to have been with you, but perhaps next time we shall be able to go for a trip to Weston or Ilfracombe. I have been doing a bit of pig dealing this week, have bought two & sold ten. Your Father is having one tomorrow it is one I bought off old Mrs Theyers & I hope he will have better luck with it than he has been having lately. After tomorrow I shall be quite a poor farmer only having three pigs & a dog. I shall be very pleased to see the back of this dog really the other night I was half inclined to make him a land-owner I had a nice letter from the gentleman I sold my other dog too, saying he was more than pleased with it so that was a big surprise to father. I expect we shall have Mabel & Elsie home next week. Beaty Carter & Lil Goodrich have left their places & come home, but I rather it was you come home for a time. The wet weather has quite stopped another cycle ride down to see you but I hope to come down before long. I am sending you a few walnuts…

Nov 5th 1911…We had a letter from Maud last week she was very pleased you went to see her, but the last time I came down Will said he was going to see you next month but I have not heard if he kept his word. Elsie & Mabel came home last Thursday I don’t know when they will be likely to go to Bristol but most likely in about a fortnight’s time. It is six weks today since I was with you last so in a fortnight’s time I shall try & come down again but I expect I shall come by train as the roads are awful now for biking. I went to Dursley yesterday & to your home today with Arthur & to Church tonight this makes the third wet Sunday & it seems so miserable to have wet Sundays as it seems the only chance one has to go out for a walk. No doubt you have heard of the death of Charley Evans the drover & old Mrs Mabbett of Cambridge was found dead in bed today. I expect this winter will tell on a lot of old people about here. What an anxious time it must have been for the newly married couple waiting for a Minister. Now I must close hoping to see you next Sunday week…

Nov 20th 1911…Just a line to let you know that I got home quite safe after a most enjoyable week-end. I got back last night about twenty to eleven. I always think the time goes very quickly when we are together, but I always so much enjoy coming to see you. Will drove me to the Station this morning the train starts out at five past seven & it was gone seven when we got there so we cut it rather fine. We were going to get up at five o’clock so I thought I would be awake so at twenty to four I asked Will if it was time to get up but he said it was too early so I went to sleep again & I did not wake till a quarter to six so then we had to get a move on. I thought it was coming on alright when I was walking down from the Station. Burland met me with my bicycle & said I was wanted home shoeing as quick as possible & I have had to stick to it all day. Father & Elsie have been to Gloucester for the day. Now I must close thanking you for your letter hoping you are feeling quite well & looking forward to soon seeing you again…

Dec 10th 1911…I expect you were rather surprised to see Elsie last Sunday if you went to see them. Mabel & Will had a good soaking coming up & I thought Will was going to have a wet journey back as it was raining quite fast before he started. I was over at Mr J.Hill’s pig ringing yesterday afternoon so I went on to see how your people were getting on. Arthur is not very well, he came home Friday from work with a bad cold & Mary just came home after giving the Dentist a job. The Rectory people are going on very well with their scarlet fever. What an awful thing it is when a man shoots himself. Mother went to Bristol the Thursday after I came down, they went out to Arnos Vale Cemetery & the funeral they saw there must have been the one from Clifton. Fancy it’s only a fortnight to Christmas I suppose you will not be coming home but you must try to get a holiday for the new year. Now I must close & go to Church, it is a miserable wet day. With my fondest love to you always…

Dec 26th 1911…I must thank you very much for the nice present you sent me. I am very pleased indeed with it. Also the nice card & letters. Mother & Elsie wish me to thank you for the nice cards you sent them. Will & the family arrived here Sunday afternoon & are going back tomorrow morning. Bert & his lady have gone back tonight. Will drive them to Berkeley Rd & a good party of us went with them. Elsie & Mabel got some confetti & we did give them such a showering with it. They did look confused & the people were all staring at them & no doubt thought they were a newly married couple. I shall not be coming to Bristol next Sunday but shall look forward to see you Saturday Sunday fortnight. Elsie & Mab will come with me as I think they have promised Miss Thomas to come down to the Pantomime. We shall come for the weekend & I hope it will be convenient for you to be out Saturday evening, if not please let me know. I have been having rather an easy or lazy time of it lately but hope to get on with the work next week. I drove to see the Dr. last Saturday. He said I ought to be in bed instead of driving about but I soon told him Christmas was the wrong time to be in bed & I am pleased to say that I am almost feeling myself again. I have been to Mr. Burnett’s today to take a shoe off a lame horse but I am not going to do any very heavy work till my back is quite well as I don’t want the second addition (sic) of this. I must thank you for sending on the card. I had a nice lot of young pigs born, last week “only fifteen” & I have a dozen of them doing well. I gave three away. Now I must close wishing you a happy & prosperous New Year & thanking you for all good wishes. With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours Percy. Please excuse this paper. PS Maud will – you shortly the children were delighted with the Dolls. Aunty Florr-ee sent them.

Dec 29th 1911…My dearest Florrie, Just a line to let you know I am coming to Bristol Saturday. Hope to see you Sunday afternoon. I will be at the Bridge about three o’clock, all news when I see you. With my fondest love to you always. I am yours Percy. I am just going to Dursley.

Jan 2nd 1912… Just a line to let you know I arrived home quite safe this morning. I began to think last night that I should have to walk all the way back. I asked a man that was standing by the rooms whether the cars were stopped & he said he thinks they were but I waited about five minutes & the last car came so I thought that was lucky but there was no car going to Lawrence Hill so I had to walk from Old Market but I did not mind that I got in about quarter past twelve. They were all fast asleep & did not hear me come in. burland met me with bicycle & we have a busy day. There were two horses waiting when I got back. I must thank you very much for changing the pin I think you made a splendid choice . I like this one very much & the girls said it looked much nicer on a small tie. I so much enjoyed coming to see you this time & only wish I was nearer to have such happy times oftener. That prim old dame told Maud she hope she will have some mistletoe next time I come down. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you always. I am yours Percy. P.S. Pleased to say Mabel is much better & Father’s neck is going on very well. That lump in Maud’s neck burst last night & discharged a lot. I think she is very glad she did not have it cut about. I hope that nice kind lady enjoyed herself today if she has been to her party.

Jan 21st 1912…It is very kind of that good natured lady to promise me the kisses but do you think it will be safe for me to come by myself? I have been to the Dr. once since coming from Bristol & I am glad to say I am feeling quite well again. He wanted to know if I had been to Clifton to see that young lady he heard my sister speak about. Mabel seems a lot better now, she has had an awful cold. Father’s neck has not got much better yet. I don’t think the Dr. knows what it is as he said at first it was poison then he thought it was an abscess & now he is treating it for a ring worm so I don’t know what he will call it next. Elsie has gone to Northampton to her boy’s home for a fortnight. What wintry weather we have had this last few days. I went down to Mr Burnett’s to shoe his hunters yesterday. I had an easy afternoon only had eight shoes to put on & while the others were hotting Miss Polly & the servant gave Collard & me a good snow balling but in the finish we had them nearly wet through. Then I had to get on with the work & the next horse started kicking & caused me to cut my two middle fingers on my right hand & they didn’t half bleed. Miss Polly bound them up & finished my work but it went rather awkward. We are expecting a hunt next Tuesday, the hounds meet at Gossington Bridge. Nancy Cook has been home for several weeks, her mother has not been well. Ada Merrett has had a fortnight’s holiday. She is going back tomorrow the invalid lady she has been looking after died a few weeks back. Now I must close wishing I was with you. With my very fondest to you always. I am yours Percy.

Feb 11th 1912…Sorry to hear you have strained your wrist but hope by this time it is got well again. You must have had a very hard time having the old lady so ill. I should hardly think she would get over it at her age. I do hope you will keep well having so much to do. Your mother told me of your trouble before I had your letter & I was almost having a bike ride down to see how you were getting on but it was so bitter cold last Sunday. We had a Social in the Old School Room Wednesday in aid of the Churchwardens’ funds. They want one hundred & twenty pounds to put the spire right & fifteen for a new organ bellows & last Sunday the fire boiler burst & that is to cost fifteen pounds so there is still a lump of money wanted. There is a concert coming off next Friday got up by Mr. A.E. Morgan for the same funds so we are going to have some amusement. I wish you was coming home for your holidays now. Bert came home yesterday & I have drove him to Berkeley Road Station tonight to go back. We are expecting Elsie home next week, she has had a long holiday. I went to Dursley last night. The Miss Vintons kindly enquired how you was. I partly promised them to go to the Dursley Theatre tomorrow night it only started Saturday week. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you always. I am yours, Percy. Pleased to say I am feeling quite myself again & my fingers are nearly well.

Feb 25th 1912…& to know you wrist is got well again. Sorry to hear the old lady is no better I should think it would be impossible for her to get over it. I went to our Slimbridge Theatre there was a full room but I thought it was very tame. I went to Dursley last night but did not go to the Theatre there. I have not seen the Miss Vintons to speak to. I saw them at a distance last night & the Monday night I was going to see them it rained pouring so I did not turn out. Only fancy it been two months since I came to see you, this fine day made me wish Clifton was a bit nearer but I hope to see you soon. I asked Arthur if he would have a bike ride down with me soon but he did not have much to say about it. He said they would soon be expecting some young pigs & and you would want him there. I sold fifteen pigs last week & have only two left so I am almost broke. Elsie and Mabel went to Bristol last Wednesday & came back Friday. They went off to Birmingham yesterday & coming back tomorrow night. I expect Elsie’s wedding will be at Easter. Your dear little Gilbert has left his situation & he wishes me to remember him to you (still a chance for you). Now I must close please excuse scribble with my fondest love to you always.

Mar 4th 1912… I was rather surprised to hear the old lady had passed away. I must thank you for the paper received this morning. What a big funeral it must have been. The daughters must feel it very much & it makes it worse the one being ill. I hope she will soon get better. Pleased to hear you are keeping well during all the sad trouble but I am sure you must have had a very hard time. Mabel does not seem at all well & Elsie has a bad cold but I am glad to say I am in the best of health at present. I went to the Dursley Theatre last Thursday with a party of nice boys from Cam & Harry lord. We had a jolly time. I did not think much of the singing but the pictures were very good. Lionel told me coming back that it was all off with Beaty’s & Harry’s courting so that did not last very long, “another chance for me I don’t think” he said. Harry had shown him all the letters she had written him, & and they were just alright with such a lot of darling. Only fancy I have to put your love in a bucket with the bottom out for dear Gilly I am surprised. Now I must close with very fondest love to you always hoping you will keep well during this awful weather…

Mar 22nd 1912…If it is fine weather tomorrow afternoon I am thinking of having a bike ride to Bristol & will see you Sunday afternoon about three that is if you have not made any other arrangements. Fan has left her situation at Birmingham. She is going to see Maud this weekend. I hope it will be fine weather tomorrow but it is still raining here at present. Now I must close hoping you are quite well as it leaves me at present. All news if I see you . With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours, Percy. Please excuse short scribble.

Mar 25th 1912…Just a line to let you know I landed home quite safe. I got down to the Rooms just at 10.30 & almost thought I was going to have a walk back but I waited a few minutes & a car came along but there was not a car going to Laurence Hill so I had a little walk on my own, but it did not seem so peasant as a walk in your company. It was raining nicely all the way back but I did not mind that so long as we had it fairly dry while we were together. You must not be surprised to see me next Sunday if it is a fine day. I saw your brother Arthur tonight & asked him if he would come for a ride & he partly promised me he would but if it is not convenient to you for us to come please let me know. I thought it would be nice for him to come to keep you company while I take de other lady for a walk. I hope you will enjoy yourself tomorrow night & only wish I could be with you but its not my luck. Now I must close hoping it will be fine next Sunday with my very fondest Love to you always…

Mar 29th 1912…I shall not be coming to see you Sunday. I was rather disappointed to hear one of the young ladies was coming home as I quite made up my mind for a ride. But you would not have much time to be with us in the morning & by the time we got there & seen you for a few minutes it would be time for us to be starting back, but should the young lady be gone away by Good Friday & the weather fine I should like to come &see you then, if not I shall be looking forward to see you at Easter time. I have seen your people tonight they all seem very well. I have sent one of my pretty sights to Mrs Francis today. I hope she will not be frightened when she sees it…

April 10th 1912… May thanks for your letters which I am always pleased to receive & to know you got back safely. I think this has been the most enjoyable Easter I have ever spent & I must say if you had not come home I should have had a dull time as I should have been thinking about seeing you at Clifton & I suppose it would not have suited them if I had been away. No doubt you thought I was in a hurry at the Station not to wait till the train started, but of course I was glad to see you leave after seeing that kissing the night before. No it was not quite that Father was fast asleep when I started & I knew if any work came there was no one there to do it but what ever had happened I should have done my level best to see you at the Station. We had a letter from Elsie this morning they got to the end of their journey alright & she said it was raining pouring there so we were lucky not to have any. I did not feel much like work yesterday but as soon as I got back from the Station there was a perfect hummer of a horse for me to shoe & of course I had to be asked how shoeing went after courting. I know which job is the easiest & I only wish it came oftener then you would soon get tired of me & want to kiss someone else that is more than you can say of me & I haven’t said I should forgive you but perhaps I had better. I went to Elmcote & Dursley last night. It looked so different there not having any lamps on the Kingshill Road & I have been to your home tonight. Miss Cookley & her friends came to see us yesterday. She is looking well & has not altered a bit. Frank Cookley, the one that came down with me, came to see us this morning, he is all for having another ride to Bristol with me soon. He wants to go before the warm weather comes so please be careful & not let me come & catch you flirting. Old Mrs Merrett told Mother that she should not have thought of us been so spooney and we did not seem to care who saw us. Now I must close hoping you are feeling well. I should feel better if I was with you. With my very fondest love to you always, hoping to see you again soon. I am yours, Percy. Just a taste of cake for my old dears.

April 21st 1912…I shall be very pleased to see you home again. I am sorry to say that I really do not think that I shall be able to spend a week at Kent with you this time, as we are very busy & father said when I asked him that he was not able to do the work himself & the other two boys couldn’t & he was not willing for me to have a holiday just yet but if you have made up your mind to go this time I will do my best to some with you & let Father do the best he can. I think myself that I could get off better a bit later on, we will see about it when you come home. Mother is thinking of having the twins here for a time & was saying what a good chance it would be if you would bring them up. No doubt Maud will write to you if you have not seen her. What a terrible thing it is about that vessel going down. Now I must close hoping to see you soon with my very fondest love to you always…

May 15th 1912…Many thanks for your letter which I am always so pleased to receive, also for sending on the postcards Mother was most pleased with them, I was glad to hear you got back alright. I have been thinking of you many times & I could not help noticing how pale you looked at the Station, but you must try & forget that. I should have felt it much worse had it been between us two but I hope that will never come to pass. I thought it was different Monday night had no one to go for a walk with & I was in bed by half past nine. Last night I went to Dursley. I have not seen your Father since you left but it will take me a very long time to forget his looks. I really think he ought to have been different but if we still keep the same he can look how he likes. Nora had her letter returned this morning it had been to Longfield and Dartford. I think you said Whitsun was your night in, so if you will let me know if that is so I will come & see you the following Sunday. Now dear I must close wishing we were at Kent. With my fondest love to you always. I am yours, Percy…

May 22nd 1912…I shall be pleased to see you Sunday if the Captain does not come back but if he should let me know in time to let Maud know or they would be wondering where I was. Will drove the family & Mabel to Thornbury last Sunday & Maurice drove Mother & Nora to meet them there. Father wanted me to bike down to my cousins at Standall so I took Maurice’s bike round to your home & took Arthur for a ride. Well we soon got to Standell then we went on to Thornbury it took us some time to find out where they had put up & when we did find it we were told they had gone to the Coffee Tavern for a tea. We then soon found them, we had our tea there they had just finished & afterwards we thought of moving homewards. We started from Thornbury 5.30 your home 6.30 so I think we did very well. I asked Arthur if he would come on to Bristol but he thought it would be too much going there & back in such a short time but if I had known where to have found you I should have come. Now dear I must close all news when I see you. Hoping you are quite well. Your Father is now & I feel quite alright with my very fondest love to you always. I am yours, Percy. I had a letter from your Aunty this morning was to give her love to you.

May 28th 1912…Just a line to let you know I have landed home quite safe this morning. I rode in the motor bus to Victoria Rooms & then had an awful job to get on the Tramcar. They were simply packed with people & about half past ten I managed to jump on & go inside there was not hardly room to stand. I counted 38 inside so you may guess we were pretty thick. I got in at Maud’s about 11 o’clock went to bed at 12 & got up at twenty to five instead of four. I left at five past five arrived home just at seven. So I think I got along very well, I was home quite as early as I was expected in fact Father was surprised to see me so soon. I had a splendid ride back on company on the road back. Father is gone to Standall today. Maud told me when I got back & told her we had been to Clevedon that she had a dream the other night that we were going for a boat trip & you had got drowned & before I had got back she wondered if her dream was coming true & it made her feel so hot. Please give my kind love and regards to the two old ladies & to Mr & Mrs Francis & the poor cat. Now I must close with my fondest love. Pleased to say I feel quite refreshed with the change hoping you are quite well. Please let me know soon how you are getting on. I am yours always, Percy.

June 9th 1912…I ought to have written to you before. I hope you found Mr and Mrs Francis quite alright also the cat & I hope poor Elisabeth is quite well by this time. Please remember me to them all. I am pleased that I came to see you Whitsun as these last two Sundays have been simply awful with rain. I did enjoy coming to see you. Maud came up last night. Sorry to hear you have got yourself in the wrong she said you told her that the train left Temple Meads sometime after seven so she got there and the train left something after eight so she had to wait. Nothing like being in plenty of time I told her. I went to the Wild Australia show at Dursley that I told you about. I thought it was very good. I biked in with Mr Hawkins from Cambridge and Eddie Pearce – “no girls”. I saw the tailor there that was making my clothes and he said he had the rest of it ready so the next night I had another journey to town. I saw that Miss Whitmore that I told you was at St James Vicarage, in Cam she wanted to get her sister’s bicycle and come for a ride with me but I did not want her to so I told her I should soon be back but I think she got tired of waiting and afterwards saw her out with Harry Lord and he now goes out with her regular. I rather it had been you. I went to Church last Sunday night that had been the first time for five Sunday nights. I had a walk with Arthur over to your home this afternoon. Your father is quite alright with me now he wanted me to stay to tea but I thought as Maud was home I would get back home to have tea with them, so it must be you that upsets him, so you had better keep away, then I shall not see him look so pleasant again as he did on our return. I had a post card from your Aunty one day in the week. They have finished their work & had been for a walk & had seen some holly they have not forgotten that yet. I went to Dursley last night saw Millie she is looking much better now & her sister is quite well again. I saw Lionel Steel as I was going in he wanted me to have a bike ride to Gloucester with him tonight. He was going to see Millie & he was going to find me a girl there, but I am not desirous of anyone to be found for me at present & I have been to Church instead. Now dear I must close hoping you are quite well, pleased to say I am in the best of health. Hope it will not tire you to read all this scribble with fondest love…

June 24th 1912…I thought of writing to you last night but after Church I took a walk with your dear Gilbert & when I got home it was my bed time. I hope you will pay me well for taking care of him. Well the last time I wrote to you I had having several bike rides to Dursley & different places but this last week I have not been anywhere. I am very glad we had our week together when we did. Had you been home now I could not have come to Kent we are very busy now with mowing machines. Father took the job to mow the Church-yard so that was another job for me. I started at it last Thursday & have made a finish of the mowing tonight. It was very awkward to cut between but I have stuck to it & have been at it up to half past nine nights so I have been putting in some long days. Mabel has been at Hardwicke this last week & is coming home Friday. I promised to bike up yesterday to see her but it was so wet that I thought I had better stay at home. Bert is bringing his young lady home next Sunday week for a week’s holiday. I wish it was us two having another week together but I hope to have a trip to Ilfracombe this time with you. That is if you have your summer holidays while the boats are running. I think the first trip from Sharpness is next Monday. I bought a very large pig last week – the largest I have ever had – I treated him the same as the poor cat but not in a bag & I am now going to put him up at Uncle’s to graze for a month or so then have him home & fat it. He is one that will make your heart beat to look at him but I am saving his tusks to show Mrs Francis. I have seen your Father today – he is quite well now don’t you get coming home again to upset him. I expect you are looking forward for the King’s visit if he had been coming on Saturday I would have come down, but I think of coming to see you August Sunday if not before if you are not home before then. The Sunday School children are going to Weston next Monday week. Please remember me to all friends hope you & all are well. Pleased to say I am now, I must close dear with my very fondest love to you always…

July 7th 1912…You must have had quite a jolly time on the 28th but I should think the rain must have spoilt the decorations. I should very much have liked to have been with you. What an awful lot of rain & thunder we have been having lately. We finished on hay-making in the Churchyard yesterday afternoon it has been a long time about. I only just finished the little rich when it began to look like raining but it only came a few spot & from Charley Peglars to the Patch it rained in torrents. Burland drove to the Patch to meet Bert & his girl Miss Cooper. They had been to Gloucester & they came back almost soaked. We could hardly believe that it rained so at the Patch. The lightening & thunder yesterday afternoon was awful. I never did see such a flash before & then such a crash it fairly shook everything, it struck through the Church wall just by the lightening conductor & scattered the mortar from one side to the other & the side facing Uncle’s field down the road was struck at the foundation in four places under each water spout & pieces of stone drove 13 yds. Mabel, Bert & Miss Cooper went to Ilfracombe last Monday. I am looking forward for our trip. They have gone back tonight. I should prefer the young lady he brought down the first time. This one is so awful quiet & looks old he says she is twenty five but I said an old one. She looks quite thirty. She was awful bad on the boat after they left Weston & all the way coming back. I hope you will be a better sailor than that. I have sold that pretty pig I told you about last time. I found out that he would kill fowls so I thought I had best part with him. I only had him a fortnight bought for thirty two shillings & I sold him to Joe Smith for fifty nine so I did very well. Please remember me to all friends hoping you are quite well wishing I was with you. Pleased to say I am in the best of health. Now I must close with fondest love to you always. I am yours Percy. There will be several trips in August & September. My little dog only had one pup & that is dead. Poor Gilly is disappointed as I promised him one.

July 23rd 1912…I was rather disappointed that August Sunday was your night in, but am pleased to hear you are soon coming home, perhaps you will be home before I come to Bristol. Iwent to Dursley Fete Saturday evening. Captain Spencer was there with his balloon & I had a short trip up in it. He had it let up with an engine on a wire rope & I went up five hundred feet it looked a long way to the ground & when I came down I was told that it was the nearest time I should ever be to heaven. I suppose you have seen an account of that awful murder near Dursley Sunday morning. I went to Studt’s sacred concert Sunday evening at Dursley & was there again last night to do some shopping & that is the reason why I have not written to you before. Mabel is coming home Thursday she has had a nice time with Mrs Hurd. The men started working at the Church last week. They are starting to scaffold the spire to take the top off. Now I must close with my very fondest love looking forward to your coming home. I am yours always Percy. Please excuse the scribble.

Aug 5th 1912… No doubt you will be surprised to hear that I have been doing a bit of flirting if you have not already heard of it. Well I have been helping Mr Hawkins with his haymaking several nights & I was introduced to his governess & I was introduced to his governess & I have taken her for several bike rides since. She is a young lady from North Hampton & is going to Australia in October, but its all the talk that it is all off between us. I have been to Berkeley Show today the stormy weather made it wretched. I got home about seven & have been to the top of the Church Spire. Bert came home Saturday & has gone back today. Elsie & her husband has come for a week. Please remember me to all friends hoping you are quite well. Pleased to say I am. Now I must close with fondest love to you always…

Sept 1st 1912… Glad to hear you got back alright had I given it a thought I would have gone to Berkeley Road with you. Mabel & Annie Theyers have biked to Hardwicke today. I thought they were in for a wet journey back but the rain has managed to keep off. Mabel & Annie have been very anxious to go up the scaffolding of the spire if I would take them so last Tuesday night I told them I would & both of them went to the top – quite brave. I am sending you a post card view of the Church. I hope the weather will be more settled by next Sunday. I will be down about three o’clock if later or earlier would suit you better I could be there. I shall bike down Sunday morning & most likely go back at night “after ten”. I have been to Churcg tonight & Gossington is the only place I have been too since you were home. I was shoeing a young horse last Thursday & he managed to throw me on the bricks rather heavy – it bruised my left knee badly, but I am very pleased to say it is got nearly well again. Now I must close as it is getting late hoping to see you next Sunday & that you are quite we,,With my very fondest love  to you always…

Sept 9th 1912…Just a few lines to let you know I landed home quite safe. I got back last night about half past ten, they were all gone to bed. I got up at half-past five & was anxious to get on the road but Will would make me stop & have a cup of tea & something to eat so I did not start till six. I felt fairly done when I got as far as Filton & I was an hour doing the first eight miles but I done the next Fourteen in the same time. I felt so blessed stiff when I started but it wore off & by the time I got home I was just set for riding. I have been busy shoeing & haymaking & we are going to work late tonight mowing. I would prefer taking you to Eastville or for a walk. I called on my way back to let your mother know how you were & your Father walked down in his dinner hour so I told him you was getting on fine. I have the part of your umbrella stick in my pocket. Don’t pay the bill. Now I must close thanking you for your letter, hoping you are feeling well. Pleased to say I am. With my fondest love to you always. I am your Percy. Please let me know soon how you are getting on.

Undated…Many thanks for your letter, which I was most pleased to receive. Fancy you getting another place in Clifton. I thought  you would & I am very pleased you have. I have never noticed the place the Avenue is it a business place or gentry? I have been looking forward to seeing you home again but as you say it will be hardly worth coming for if you leave on the Sat. mind & come up. I shall be pleased to see you. I am sending you a few apples & pears. I think I shall have a bike ride to Coaley tonight I have not been yet. I wish I was having a ride to see you again tomorrow but no such luck. We shall finish our haymaking tonight. I have taken a bit of mowing old George Nicholl’s orchard & instead of getting fatter that will make me thinner. Now I must close hoping you are now quite well. Pleased to say I am. With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours Percy.

Sept 30th 1912: Addressed to Miss Noad, c/o Mrs Francis, 18 Berwick Road, Eastville, Bristol – My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive & I shall be very pleased to see you home again. I asked Arthur yesterday if he knew which day you were coming home. He did not know if it was Wednesday or Friday. I hope it will be Wednesday as it is Harvest Festival Thursday & going to be a grand day Friday the Bishop is coming to dedicate the bells. The Church spire is to be finished today. I went to the Patch Hotel sale Saturday & bought some things for our happy home. I can’t stay to write more now – all news when I see you. with my fondest love to you always. I am yours Percy. I am sending you a few nuts & pears. Please remember me to Mr & Mrs Francis hoping you are all well & I am sure you will be having a jolly time with them. Please excuse this scribble.

8 The Avenue, Clifton.JPG

Number 8, The Avenue, Clifton – where at night she could hear the lions roaring at the Zoo

Future letters to Miss Noad, c/o Mrs Weston, 8 The Avenue, Clifton, Bristol

Oct 13th 1912…I did wish I had waited a bit longer at the Station I expect you thought I was a bright one. I quite thought I could get home before the train would be in & as Father was waiting to use the pony I was anxious to get back but just as I was in the trap I saw the train come in & I was almost getting out to tie the pony up again. I should hardly think you had time to get a ticket. I felt awful bad with the headache all the rest of the afternoon & at night. I took your advice & went to the Dr. he said I had what they called a conjestive headache partly brought on with having to bend so much at my work. He gave me some medicine so I have felt better today than I have for the last two months. Mabel wanted me to have a bike ride with her to Wickwar today but this morning we altered our plans & took a ride to Cheltenham neither of us had been there before. We started at half past nine & got to Cheltenham about twelve. We had a nice walk round before dinner & started back at half past five. We stayed for an hour at my cousins in Gloucester & was home before nine. I wish you could have been with us. I do feel ashamed of myself towards you last week. I do hope dear you will forgive me for all. I shall try to see you next Sun. if fine. I shall try to see Frank one night this week to see if he will come for a ride, but I don’t much think he will as he has not been well. I do sincerely hope you will like your new place. Write soon. Now I must close with my very fondest love to you always. Yours ever Percy. I will send Alice some bacon towards the end of next week.

Oct 21st 1912…Just a line to let you know I am landed home quite safe. It was raining hard about five this morning so I did not turn out of bed till half-past, had some breakfast & started on my bike at half-past six. Had a splendid ride up only got terribly splashed. Arrived home half-past eight. I can’t stay to write more now, thanking you for your last letter. Kindly remember me to all the jolly young ladies. I quite enjoyed myself with my fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy. Write soon.

Oct 31st 1912…I hope by this time the young lady is quite well again & I wish I was coming down again next Sunday to see you, but it is bad biking weather now. I had not been on my bike till last Tuesday since coming to use you & I was very near meeting with an accident. I biked to Dursley & on my way back coming down Cam Pitch I could see a man some way ahead so I rang my bell & he walked right across the road then back & across again. I shouted to him then put both brakes on & was very soon smacked to the ground. It seemed to shake me all over but did not hurt me like it might. When I got up I was smothered in mud & how I stopped from dropping that fellow one or two I don’t know. I did not touch him & all he could say was what in the heel a fellow to do I told him to keep on his right side & I am quite stiff now & have got a lovely headache out of it. Fan came home Saturday & went back Sunday night. She wished me to give her kind love to you. She is looking very well. You will see by enclosed letter that I sent a box to Kent. I am learning bell ringing & last night I went to the young men’s bible class at the Rectory. I only wish Clifton was a bit nearer so that I could see you often but I am most pleased you are so happy where you are. Now I must close hoping you are quite well with my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy.

Nov 11th 1912…I am glad to say I feel quite alright again but I felt stiff for days & I had a nice bruise come out on the side of my head but it is gone now & the headache. I had a very good mind to come & see you last Sunday week it was a glorious morning & I biked down to Standle my cousin wanted my spaniel dog so I took him down & on my way there I wished the dog was home so that I could come on to see you but about twelve there was a change in the weather & it was a wretched night. I am looking forward to coming down the end of the month I do hope the weather will be good. I should like to have another bike ride down & I should come on the Saturday. I suppose you would be able to get an evening out. No doubt you thought I was got very good going to bible class. I would prefer coming to see you. Last Wednesday at the bible class Mrs Carter wanted someone to call for George Watts as she thought he was shy & said perhaps I would. I said I would with pleasure if he was a young girl what a shock to her. I am getting on first rate with the bell ringing. I was the last to start & now can best several of them. Arthur does not get on like I thought he would he seems very nervous. I have only been to four practices so I think I have done fine. Now dear I must close kindly remember me to all the girls. With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy. I wish Clifton was nearer so that I could see you more often.

Nov 20th 1912…I am quite looking forward to seeing you Saturday week. I hope the weather will be fine then I shall bike down & if wet will come by train. I did wish last Sunday night when it was so fine that I could be with you but no such luck. I went to Church & after took a walk as far as Coaley junction then back through Cambridge & down home “on my own”, wishing all the time you was with me. Millie Vinton came down last Wednesday. She is looking so much better & I was to be sure to remember her to you. I saw both of them Saturday night & I had to go to their home with them. I don’t think they are very comfortable there living with their married brother. I went down to Mr Burnett’s hunter shoeing Monday he seemed very anxious to know when the wedding is coming off. I biked to Moreton Valence last Sunday morning 7 in the afternoon Maurice & I had a ride nearly to Nibley & went to my cousin’s to tea at Standle. Got home about five. Now dear I must close anxiously waiting to see you. With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy. Please let me know where & the time to meet you.

Nov 26th 1912…I must wish you very many happy returns on your birthday & I hope you will be a good girl now you are out of your father’s care. I am very pleased to hear that you can get out Saturday if I bike down shall start about 2 o’clock then if all goes well I should get down just after four, but if wet I shall come down by train that leaves Coaley somewhere about two, so if you get to Maud’s I shall be sure to see you some how. I went to Dursley Saturday night. I went by train as the roads were simply awful. Now dear I must close as it is bed time. Looking forward to see you. With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy.

Receipt : Telephone 2402X4, Established 1879, Pleasance & Harper, Goldsmiths & Silversmiths, 4 Wine Street, Bristol. Mr Barton Nov 1912 Dia S/S Gipsy Ring £5-5-0d Rec’d with thanks 30th November 1912 pp P.& H.

Dec 2nd 1912…My dearest Florrie, Just a line to let you know I am landed home once more after a most enjoyable week end. I was in good time to catch the car last night . I got up at half past five & started on my way home just after six. Well I was at Old Market St at 6.20 & home at 8.15. My word it was dark when I started & my lamp would not burn so I expected I should get stopped but I kept on till I came to the hill before you get to Horfield then I saw two coppers so I jumped off & I asked them if a light was needed. They said where are you going & I told them nearly to Gloucester & my lamp wouldn’t burn so they said after I get over the hill. I could get on as I should not meet anyone else that would say anything & as I got on towards Filton there was no street lamps lit & I could hardly see the Tram lines. The wind was actually in my favour both ways. I hope you will enjoy yourself Tuesday night wish I could be with you, but I really felt ashamed of my conduct towards you both nights after I left you. I hope you will look it over but I never go out with any other. Now dearest I must close hoping you will forget the past with my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever, Percy. Please write soon dear.

Dec 8th 1912…My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter, which I was most pleased to receive. I am very glad your ring was done to your satisfaction and that you like it. I shall be very pleased when the time comes for me to get the other one. Do you think if we wait till 1914 would that suit you providing I find a suitable place or would that be too long for you to wait. I should not have had such good weather if I had come down this week end I do think I was lucky to be able to cycle both ways & I did so much enjoy coming to see you. I only wish that I could come oftener but I must look forward for us being together always & I shall be very pleased when that day comes * hope you will never regret it. No doubt you will be surprised to hear that I am going to Birmingham this Christmas we had a letter from Bert saying he was going to be married & he wants me to go as best man. I did not think he would be before us as they have not been going together so long as we have, but he said she was not willing to be married next year as it is 1913 & he thought to wait till 1914 would be too long so they have decided to finish it off in 1912. I wish it was us instead but I am quite content to wait & as it is your Father’s wish we had best not be in a hurry. I went up to Uncle’s Friday night, I had not been there since you was home & got called old stick at home as I had not been up before. I said you wished to be remembered to them & they congratulated us on our engagement & Millie sends her love & sympathy & afterwards said she wished she was you. We had a letter from Fan last week she seems very pleased we are engaged she told me when she was home how sorry she should have been if we had parted & I am sure I should have been. She said she should have written to you but did not know your address. I will let her have it & no doubt you will hear from her. I went to Church this morning & it rained pouring. Have been over to your home this afternoon they are quite well from the measles but your mother has a nasty hoarse cold. I am writing this instead of going to Church tonight – thought I should get too good. I think I have told you all for this time dearest so will close with my very fondest love to you always. Hoping you are quite well & I have got my smacker off & feels quite well only I wish I was nearer you. I am yours ever Percy. Please write whenever you can find time.

Dec 12th 1912…I am writing a few lines to ask you if you could come to Birmingham with us. We had a letter from Bert’s young lady saying they should be very pleased to see you. Do try & come dear. We shall go Christmas night by the mail so if you could come up by it & you could get back the day after Boxing Day that is if you could not stay longer. Ask the Mrs she will let you. I can’t stay to write more so will close hoping to hear from you soon & that you will be able to come, with my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy.

Dec 24th 1912…Many thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive. But was very sorry indeed to hear you have such a bad cold. I do hope dearest you are better by now. I must thank you very much for the very nice present you so kindly sent me. I am delighted with it. I went to the Station last night but it did not come till this morning. I don’t think I shall be able to come to see you next Sunday as I am not coming back till Friday & when I come next time I want to take you to the Panto. So shall I come your next time out or the one after that – would be a fortnight next Saturday or a month if you prefer? I hope you will be able to get out on the Saturday when I do come. I hope the weather will soon get better & dearest you must take care when you get out again. I shall be very glad when my outing is over. I am not looking forward to a very enjoyable time. I would much rather come & see you. I am quite tired of shoeing today but have two more hunters to shoe. I must now close wishing you & all the girls a merry Xmas. Will write to you when at Brum. With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy. Please let me know soon how you are getting on dearest.

Dec 27th 1912…My dearest Florrie, I am once more landed home after a very nice holiday. I do wish you could have been with me. I was very pleased when I got home to find your most welcome letter also the cards which I must thank you for & all good wishes. I was more than pleased to hear you are got better. I have had you in my thoughts a lot since I had your letter saying you were ill & dearest I wished I could have seen you. The Wedding it went off well the Vicar was splendid he gave a splendid address. When they were kneeling at the Altar he said that they must remember two hearts one beat & two minds one thought & that it was not the rich that were the happiest. It was really splendid what he said. I ably carried out my duties & have now learnt it all. I shall be most pleased dearest when it comes to our lot which I hope won’t be very long. There was a good party at the wedding breakfast & after of course we drank their health & congratulated them & I was called upon to speak being the best man. They were all strangers to me so I could not say what I thought of so I wished them long life, happiness, prosperity & a good family then they all had a good laugh & hear, hear. I had a good mind to say but they seemed a serious lot.  ‘Here’s luck to the cock that treadeth the hen, he flappeth his wings then is ready again. Here’s luck to the hen that never refuses to let the cock tread her when ever he chooses.’ I hope it won’t disgust you dearest don’t tell the other girls. I wrote a card to when at Brum but came off in such a hurry I forgot to post it, perhaps Bert might see it & send it on. I went to do a bit of shopping this morning. I have got you an umbrella. I hope you will like it – hey will send it from the shop. Perhaps you might have had it before you get this. I bought for a wedding present from us a dozen knives that was what they were in want of & I am to thank you very much indeed from Bert & Marion. They said perhaps you would not mind if they did not write to you. If I would thank you, they were very much disappointed about you not being able to come & sorry to hear you have been ill. We are to be sure to spend a holiday with them they have a most comfortable home & Fan said she had a bed for you with her. I told them they need not have troubled I could have found room for you with me. I had a nice card & a letter from your Sister, Bessie, which I was very pleased to receive. I will write to her soon. Mother is gone to see Elsie & is coming home tomorrow. Now dearest I must close & go to bed tonight. I have not got to bed for three nights it has been morning & I am not used to it. Hoping to see you in a fortnight’s time if convenient or in a month just as you say. It does seem a long time since I saw you dearest. I am looking forward to see you & I hope you will be able to see your way clear to get out on the Saturday. With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy. Write dearest as soon as you can let me know when to come. Hope you are not going to have another cold for a long time.

Dec 31st 1912…My dearest Florrie, May thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive & to hear you got the umbrella alright – really I did not know what to get you dearest so I am glad you like it. I did not think to have your initials put on it but if you could get it put on I will pay for it. We will settle up about the present when I see you but dearest you said in your last letter that you will be pleased to see me once more, is that all you wish to see me> I do hope it will be more than once as I am sure I could devote myself to you. I am quite looking forward to see you again & I hope it will be convenient for you to get out in a fortnights time. I hope I shall not upset you by making a note of once more but I was bound to notice it. The sudden death of George Spencer has cast quite a gloom over Slimbridge today, yesterday he delivered his letters round Cambridge as usual & when he came home he went & lay on the bed with awful pains in his head. They sent for the Dr. but none of them thought him serious & at 3.30 this morning he passed away. Some time ago when I had a bad head George would ask me different symptoms how it felt & only as late as last Tuesday night he asked me how my head was got now & I was pleased to tell him it was quite alright but he said his head was awful. It is awfully sad for Mrs Spencer been left with three children. Now dearest I must close hoping you are feeling much better. Please write as soon as you can. With my very fondest love to you always. I am yours ever Percy.I hope I did not offend you dearest by writing last time to you as I did I am very sorry indeed if I did. Wishing you a Happy New Year.

Jan 6th 1913…My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I was more than pleased to receive. I am also very pleased to hear you want to see me more than once. I knew dearest you could not mean it & it was really too bad of me to say anything about it & I suppose I had better forgive you this time. Dearest I shall be very pleased to see you in three weeks time but that will be your Sunday morning out, wont it. If that will be most convenient for me to come & see you I will weather permitting, or I would rather wait another week when I could see you both Saturday & Sunday. Only fancy that young girl saying she envied you I should not have been so much surprised had she said she was sorry for you but really you don’t know what people are living in the town. I hardly remember which was Essie was it the short one. Dearest I am sorry I upset you, but you can always think of me been true & devoted to you although we are far from each other. I never go out with any other, nor even wished too. I had quite a peasant evening at your home last night I wished you were there. I had a walk over in the afternoon stayed to tea & after we got singing hymns & your Father played his music we got on fine. George Spencer was buried Friday & Mrs Boughton Saturday. Mrs Spencer was awfully upset & she would not believe he was dead & begged of them Thursday not to have him taken away. It is very sad for her she said they had been married eleven years & that have been the happiest time she had ever had. Now dearest I must close hoping you are feeling quite well again. Pleased to say I am quite well & all your family. Burland is gone to Birming in the baking. I am dearest with my fondest love. Yours ever Percy.

Jan 14th 1913…My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive. I was very glad Saturday that I was not going to Bristol I never remember so much rain in so short a time. The water was coming all down the road like a sea it very soon flooded our shop & to get to the Post Office there were planks put from the steps out into the road. Have you heard of the sad drowning of Tommy Taysum he had been to Cambridge he was living in one of the cottages below here. He left for home just after nine & Sunday morning he was found in the first field going to Cambridge along the gravel path, there is a hollow place & it was filled with water & covered the path. It is supposed that he found the water in the path stepped over & got in the hollow. The inquest was held at the Old School last night & it was brought in “found drowned”. Mr Hobbs found him & his head & shoulders were out of the water “he liked the drink”. I felt awful bad Sunday I bought two pigs Saturday & fetching them home I got wet but for nearly a week I have ached all over & getting wet made it worse. I was awful hoarse Sunday but had to get amongs the work yesterday & today I find I shall soon work it off. I expect Maud told you Elsie has a son week old yesterday that is none of your “no family the first year”. Fancy it been nine months from the day she was married. How is Mrs Francis getting on. Will had more sense that Jack his going to get the 30 bob insurance money ins’t he. Dearest I shall be very pleased to meet you at Maud’s in a fortnights time I shall come by train that is if it is not frosty weather. I think now we are going to get some snow. The Wotton change ringers came to Slimbridge Saturday the Rector gave us all young & old ringers a tea in the evening at the Old School & all us young ringers have joined the Wotton ringing Association as probationers we shall be able to attend the meeting & be taught the change ringing. The Rector is taking the choir to Bristol Panto Thursday. Dearest I do hope you are keeping well during this damp weather & wont get another cold. I only wish we were not so far apart from each other but won’t it soon be time for you to be coming home again – make belief you are not well in about a months time & come home for a rest. I am sure I will look after you. I have a riddle to ask Mrs Francis when I see her next time it is “why is a woman a better blacksmith thana man” Think it out & tell me when I come to see you, perhaps you might know it. Now dearest I will close please excuse this awful scribble. Write dearest when you can find time. With my very fondest love to you always I am yours ever, Percy.

Jan 22nd 1913…I am very much looking forward to see you Saturday & I do hope dearest the weather will be better it has been awful wet again here this afternoon. I have been doing a bit of pig dealing this week & your Father has sold eight of his. I had a walk over last Sunday evening they all seem pretty well. I am pleased to say my cold is better but not gone yet, really this wet weather is enough to make a parson swear. Dearest I shall come to see you by train that gets at Bristol something about three o’clock. I am so pleased to hear you are quite well again. Fancy it been nearly two months since we have seen each other & really dearest it seems like six months to me. I shall be very pleased when the time comes for us to be happily living together. I cant think out Lloyd George’s representation. Now dearest must close anxiously looking forward to see you, with my fondest love to you always. I am dearest Yours ever Percy.

Postmark Feb 27th 1913…Thursday, My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive, but was sorry to hear of Mr Francis illness. I was not aware that he was a heavy drinker & I suppose that is what it came from. Poor Mrs Francis how it must have upset her & at such a time makes things worse. I hope she will be alright & hope he is well again dearest. I hope you will not get yourself nocked up with a cold again. I quite forgot when I said I would see you at Easter that Maud & Will told me when I was down last that they were looking forward for a visit to Slimbridge at Easter so I will come next Saturday week if you could get out Saturday afternoon, if not I will bike down Sunday morning unless I come down Easter Sunday & you sleep at Maud’s with me. You would never like me to be in a strange house by myself I am sure, but dearest I think I had better come your next time out & dearest I hope you will be able to get out Saturday. I have had an awful headache this week but it is better today. Now dearest I will close with my very fondest love to you always I am dearest your everloving, Percy. Wish we were in the same place as Bessie was last Sunday.

Postmark March 10th 1913…Monday, Just a line to let you know I am landed home quite safe after a most enjoyable weekend. I was in good time last night for the car, so I got back about quarter to eleven. I got up at ten minutes to six had breakfast & started on my homeward journey somewhere about half past six I quite thought I was in for a wet ride & quite a thick fog till I got to Whitfield. I called about the pigs I told you of & bought them for £5-15 I expect that will mean an outing for Maurice to fetch them Wednesday. Father would never let me off he would be afraid I should be coming on to Clifton & no doubt I should wish I could. I got home ten minutes past eight, from Whitfield it was lovely riding the wind at my back. I was so pleased to see Mr Francis looking so well hope she did not mind me calling to see them. Dearest I think we have happier times every time we meet wish we could often see each other but we must wait a bit longer & I hope we shall always be as happy as we are now. I am going to Mr Burnetts shoeing this afternoon. Now dearest I must close with my very fondest love to you always I am dearest you’re your everloving  Percy. Please excuse bad writing in a hurry.

March 25th 1913…Maud & Will & family got here about 2 o’clock Sunday & started back this afternoon the weather has been lovely. I wished I was taking a walk with you Sunday but was with your brother instead we had a walk up round Cam & yesterday afternoon Will & I had a bike ride to Framilode he wanted to see Frank but when we got there he was out with his lady so then we went on to Morton Valence had tea then started back got home at 7-30 so I have not had much holiday & we have been busy shoeing all day. Good Friday we rang a muffled peel on the bells for over an hour & next Sunday morning we are going to ring & the old ones at night. Only one after all at Eastville I am sure they are proud of her well I think we should be don’t you? I was not closed up very long with my stock only till Wednesday the pigs heart was bound between her lungs & as the blood could not pass through it caused her death. Maurice & I had a nice job to bury her on the Sunday morning. We had to dig a hole 6 ft long 6 ft deep & 2 wide. I hope to see you the week before Witsun that is your Sunday in. I expect I shall bike down Sunday morning when I come as Frank would not be able to get off to come Saturday afternoon. I wish he could so that we could be out together Saturday & Sunday. I sent a post card to Eastville Saturday night. Dearest I am pleased to say my cold is much better but not quite gone. I weighed myself last week when I was over at Pearce’s with Jack & was surprised to find I was actually 8 lbs lighter than I was four months ago. I really must be pining for you dearest but I don’t show it. Now dearest I must close with my very fondest love to you always wishing I was with you, hoping you are quite well. I am yours Everloving Percy. Give my kind regards to the girls fondest love to you.

April 6th 1913…I expect you must have been surprised to have de old friend come to see you. I should like to see her again. I went to the Cam Vicarage Sale Wednesday it was a two days sale & I went the first day there was a beautiful lot of furniture there. I bought a birch wood chest of drawers there. I saw miss pick there she has not altered a bit. She wanted to know if I was going to start house keeping. I had a good mind to say “They have all been doing it”. I have got twenty nine chickens all pure bred white leghorns. Dearest I wish I had a suitable place & you to look after them but I hope it wont be very long before we are settled down somewhere. I am got almost tired of pig keeping I sold two yesterday & have four left. I finished my old boar pig’s playful games last Saturday week I have sold him to Joe Smith he is going to have him Tuesday. I thought last week that I was going to be closed up again I had a sow come from Mr Gazards Old Hurst to my white pig the next day they reported to the police that they had a sow that was going to die. So the vet went there & killed her & found that my pig was the cause of her death. White came & asked me what the hell sort of pig did I have. I expect it must be the weather. I had a letter from my cousin at Stinchcombe saying he should like to make me a present of a black spaniel dog so I went down this morning to fetch it. I started just after eleven & it was a terrible wind I very soon got there but had a hard ride back. I had a very good mind dearest to come on to see you when I was at Berkeley Rd instead of going to Stinchcombe it would have been quite a pleasure to have biked down the way the wind was blowing but I could never have got back. I am quite looking forward to seeing you again I wish we were nearer each other. Jimmy Cook had a sale yesterday he is going in the police force. Old Mrs Nicholls is about the same as ever if anything she is better. Bill has been a bit quieter since Easter Tuesday a man living in one of the cottages below here gave him a smack on the nose. Old Mrs Nicholls made a little will about a fortnight ago Uncle & I are the two witnesses to it but it has been kept a secret poor Billy he will have his eyes opened one of these fine days as he thinks he is coming into house & all when his mother dies but the house is mortgaged & she has left the furniture 7 things to different ones she did not leave me much. Now dearest I must close should very much have liked to have been with you today. With my very fondest love to you always I am dearest always your everloving Percy.

Have I ever told you that Walter Thomas has come home. He went to stay with his sister Mrs Joyner & while there he ruptured himself coughing & has been at Bristol Royal Infirmary under going an operation for it. He was only come for a short holiday so it was hard luck for him.

Postmark April 17th 1913…Sunday Evening, My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive. I had the two pigs brought home Wednesday & I am very pleased with them, even Father said what nice pigs they were, but he was not willing to let Maurice fetch them for me so I got Mr Collard too. I have got them in Jack Goodrich’s sty & I am very glad I have as I have had rather a bad job happen. I had a hilt brought down from Cam last Monday Mr Tocknell’s pig, & he wanted to leave her till she was right so Friday she was attended too. I sent Friday night for him to fetch her on Saturday and to my surprise when I went up to feed them yesterday morning she was down dead. I went 7 reported it to White then went on to Cam. The Vet from Stroud came down in the afternoon & the Super from Dursley last night. I am fairly fixed up now can’t have a pig brought there or remove one till I get notice from London it is hard lines on me as my three pigs are expensive to keep & as it must be Lent with them I am getting nothing to repay it. Father & I went to Hardwicke Reformatory to operate on some calves & an old boar pig I done that one, we then drove through Longney on down to Framilode & got home about six. I did not want to go as I have had an awful cold this week I got hot biking up Monday & for the next three days I could do nothing to keep from shivering, missing you again dearest, but I am pleased I feel much better today. None of us went to Tyerinton yesterday & I am very glad after what has happened that wee decided not to go. I saw Frank Cookley yesterday he is quite well & we almost made up our minds to ride down at Whitsun I had not seen him before since he biked down with me. Will did often ask me how he was getting on but I could never tell him. Dearest I am very pleased we were favoured with such nice weather it is an awful wet evening here now. I must put up with getting a cold after having such an enjoyable week end. It is a shame we can’t see each other oftener but dearest that time won’t be long coming I hope. I went over to your home this afternoon they are all very well. I will now close with my fondest love to you always. Please write whenever you have time come home if you ca. I am dearest your everloving Percy.

April 17th 1913…I hope by this time your hand is better. I was almost getting a holiday last Saturday I was shoeing one of Mr Cox horses & managed to get a smack from him, he caught me when he kicked fair in my back & I am sure by the rate my head came against the shop door I should have had a broken back if I had been a bit farther away from him. I had a nice bruise on my back & head but have kept on with my work. I can tell you I felt a bit stiff Sunday but have nearly wore it off now Sunday night or rather Monday morning. Willie Hall came down & called me up to render first aid to Frank he had been down to the Patch & starting home he fell with too much drink on the back of his head & cut it rather badly I very soon put my clothes on & went up he was bleeding very fast, well I never did see so much blood out of anyone before. Willie & his mother tried to stop it before they came for me, but finding they couldn’t they were getting alarmed. I bandaged him up ambulance fashion & stopped it & Willie got Mr Harris horse & trap drove him to Dursley to have it stitched up & I got back in bed again just as the clock struck one. All his trouble was that people would find out how it happened nut he tells them all he fell out an apple tree. I told him he must have overcome his girl going away last week. Mabel came home last Friday she sends her love to you. Dearest I am quite looking forward to see you again. I do hope you are feeling well again. I have taken a piece of garden 30 luggs off Mrs Workman really I don’t know when I shall be able to work it all this rain makes it bad again. I have bought my potatoes to plant it. I had 3 cwt from Hardwicke Reformatory they are dearer this year. The farmers wives & others are trying to get a parish nurse for Slimbridge the parson does not fall in with them she would be the nurse for Frampton as well as here her money is to be £70 a year £35 each place everyone seems to think what a good thing it would be for Slimbridge the meeting was only last week & they have £31 promises already. Dearest we might find her useful some day if we are spared to each other. Ida hurd came to Slimbridge last Saturday she has been to Wales for three months can almost talk Welsh & have two or three young men one special she told me. She is going to a situation at a place called Balley (sic?). Ivy is going on very well now did I tell you he has left Workman’s he was leaving on the Saturday but was ill Thursday so never finished the week & the following Monday they wired for his mother to see him. Maurice drove him to Sharpness & she took him on home. Had two Dr’s to him & they gave very slight hopes of him he was run down & strained his heart. I should not have been surprised the next morning to have heard he was dead he looked awful. Now dearest I must close with my very fondest love to you always wishing I was with you. I am dearest your Everloving Percy.

April 30th 1913…Many thanks for your kind present letter & good wishes. Dearest the ring is a very nice one but you do not see rings wore in the country very often if I am not too personal I would much prefer a watch-chain for about half the rings value, as I am ure I am not worthy of such nice presents as you have given me. Well dearest we will see about it Sunday. I do hope we shall have a nice day again. We have had enough rain to last for a while. Dearest I wish we were having another holiday at Kent this year. Now dearest I must close longing for Sunday to come. With my very fondest love to you always. I am dearest your Everloving Percy.

May 5th 1913…Just a line to let you know I am landed home quite safe after a most enjoyable day. I was in time for the last car but had to walk from Old Market. I got back at ten past eleven. I got up at 5.30 started on my journey at 6 o’clock, I had an awful hard ride up & to finish it I had to walk there was a man carrying some thorns across the road at Hornshill so I managed to get a puncture. I pumped up & rode to Gossington Bridge then finished with a walk. I thought I might just as well walk as it was not very far to stop & mend it. I got home at twenty to nine so I didn’t do so bad after all. I have been hard on shoeing all the day & am writing this dearest in my tea time. I hope dearest you do not find anything of your fall. I beginning to feel like you was telling me rather tired & expect I shall before I finish work tonight. I must now close with my very fondest love to you always I am dearest always Your Everloving Percy. I have just received a letter from Bessie. I did not meet the girls.

May 12th 1913…I was also pleased to hear you did not feel the worst for your shaking dearest I thought about you many times & wondered if you had hurt your wrist. I shall be very pleased to see you if you can get a day’s holiday. It was quite a wonder I did not come to Bristol today the Bible class men were having their outing to Bristol today. Maurice has gone & your dear Gilly will no doubt he has called to see you. At the Bible class members had to pay 2d each every week to go towards an outing. I went enough times to pay 8d so I thought I would not impose on them so when they had a meeting last week to decide about it I told Maurice to tell them I should not go so I had my 8d returned & I thought after such a wet day I would go & have a drink out of it. I quite made up my mind for a bit of digging today but the rain has stopped it. Maurice & I have 42 lug between us to work this time & your Father nocked up with a cold is giving Arthur enough to do. Bert ,Maud & Burland came Saturday. Bert & Burland are gone back tonight she is staying till Saturday she is looking well. No waiting the first year like you said we must, with them. Dearest I did wish I was with you yesterday when it was such a nice day & had I but known I should not have been able to do any gardening I should have given you a call today but I will not wait so long as I did before. I sold Bert my early chicken they took to getting out in Theyer’s garden so I thought I had best part with them. I had very poor luck with my three hens I told you I had sitting. I had thirty six eggs under the three so Tuesday morning I went to feed them & found one hen dead on her eggs the next had been standing on her’s & spoilt them & the third had twelve eggs & hatched twelve chicks. Bert is going to house sixteen then I shall have thirty two left so dearest we shall have a plenty for our little home when I can find one,  houses are very scarce round here but dearest we must wait. I thought yesterday how well I had worked it. Came to see you one Sunday & Beaty Carter home the next. Of course you can imagine taking her for a walk “not in these thank you”. Now dearest I must close hoping you are quite well, pleased to say I have not a cold this time. With my fondest love to you always. I am dearest your everloving Percy.

May 18th 1913…I expect you were surprised to get Mabel’s P.C. I am sure they enjoyed themselves coming to see you but fancy them putting on such a face as to all come to tea with you. I was thinking yesterday morning what a time it seemed dearest since I had heard from you but was pleased to find your letter awaiting me when I got back from Dursley. I quite enjoyed myself there but that is not like coming to see you. The parson stood tea for us so we got on fine Arthur did not come I shall be very pleased to see you home for your holidays but I hope to see you again in a months time if you are not coming up for a day before. Dearest I wish you were having your holidays earlier I quite made up my mind to take you for a weeks holiday to Birmingham but as Marie will be expecting about that time I hardly like to go but she said she should be very pleased to see us then. I have been over to your home this afternoon your Father is getting on very well now but is not starting work yet. Your Mother said she was middling when I asked her how she was so I don’t know how that is. Mrs Nicholls died Saturday morning she & Mr Henry Hall’s mother are been buried Tuesday poor Billy says he is an orphan now. Come home at once there’s a chance for you now dearest. I must close wishing I was with you hoping to see you soon, with my very fondest love to you always. I am dearest your Everloving Percy.

May 22nd 1913…Many thanks for the very nice chain you so kindly sent me. I am most pleased with it. Now dearest if you will allow me too, I should like to pay part of its cost. I don’t like you to spend so much on me. I am quite looking forward to seeing you again. We have had a fine time going on next door after the funeral the will was read & poor Billy did not think things were as they were. Yesterday the things were valued the two cider cups that was for me turned out to be a jug & a cup so as they did not compare with the will I could not have them. But had two old English lustre cups they are very pretty & I have been told they are valuable they are the same sort as were sold at Charley Hurd’s sale the day I carried you. After the valuation the door was locked and poor Billy was outside. Mrs Pearce has taken pity on him & he slept there last night he is gone to see a lawyer about it today. Now dearest I must close with my very fondest love to you always hoping you are quite well pleased to say I am. I am dearest your everloving Percy.

May 30th 1913…I am very pleased we have a change in the weather today this rain will do the gardens a lot of good it has been a little bit too hot this week we have been busy all the week wheel banding & shoeing. I have had several colts to handle & I can tell you they have given me a warming. I have not yet finished potato planting but hope to next week. Your people finished last night dearest I am very much looking forward for the time to come to see you again I hope it will be fine weather when I come to see you. I think I had better bring Frank with me. I would rather he was not coming then I should come on Saturday but as he can’t get off then I must be content dearest to be with you as much as I was last time. Poor Billy did not stop at Pearce’s very long they wanted him to get some weeds off the garden & he was too busy to do that so they would not have him there again he is at Malone now but that won’t last long. I can’t think what will become of him. Bart Edwards finished his sentence last Monday & Tuesday Chris Lord was had for perjury. He was on oath that Edwards was with him that night & the police has taken it up he was committed yesterday to the Assizes I expect he will get more than Edwards. Now dearest I must close with my very fondest love to you always, hoping your hand is quite well. I am you Everloving Percy. Mabel is gone to Hardwicke but I was to ask you if you have finished your work for Jesus.

June 8th 1913…Dearest I am thinking only a week before we shall be together again how we do look forward to see each other I wish we could oftener. I hope we shall be spared to have a long happy time together. I had a lazy fit come on me last Friday, when I got up I had a slight touch of headache then when I got to work shoeing it came on awful so I made out I could not do the work I quite forgot about having headache as I have not found anything of it for a long time but if I get it many times like I had it Friday I shall soon be in want of a wooden suit I am pleased to say I feel alright today & yesterday. I thought of having some sport ratting at Mr Hills & your home yesterday but we did not get much only killed fourteen. I stayed to tea at your home all your people are very well & you may guess I wished you was home to go for a walk but I must wait. We finished potato planting last Wednesday we have had some hard work at that this year Maurice & I have worked & planted our own fifty two lug of ground & Father has forty lug so we shall have some potatoes. Dearest I will get to Clifton as early as I can I have not written to let Frank know I am going yet I would rather come myself but Maud & Will are anxious to see him. Now dearest I must close longing to see you next Sunday hoping you are quite well & Kate better. With my very fondest love to you always I am dearest always your everloving Percy.

June 10th 1913…My dearest Florrie, I have decided to come to Bristol Saturday afternoon if you could get to Maud’s about 4 o’clock if all goes well I hope to get there by that time. I hope you will be able to get out Saturday. I have not let Frank know I am coming so if the weather is good we shall be able to have a nice time together. Now dearest I must close with my fondest love to you always. I am your Everloving, Percy.

June 15th 1913…My dearest Florrie, Just a line to let you know I am once more landed home quite safe after a most enjoyable weekend. I began to think last night that I was in for a walk when the car came it was simply packed there were three besides me that wanted to get on but the conductor would not allow us but just as luck would have it four got off so we were alright & I was in time for the car to Laurence Hill I did not start back as early as I thought. I did not wake very early I got out of bed & looked at my watch & it was just 3.15 so you may guess I ment to get back early I put my clothes on at 4 o’clock then called Will had a cup of tea & started on my way at 15 minutes to 5.Got home at 7 o’clock. There was a nice job happened at Slimbridge yesterday. Charley Peglar’s father cut his throat but did not do it to perfection & he was removed to Berkeley Hospital. He cut himself awful & bled tremendous & was just in the act of using the razor again when he was found. I think he is nearly 80. Now dearest I must close hoping you are not feeling very tired. Pleased to say I don’t with my very fondest love to you always. I am dearest always you everloving Percy. Perhaps you might see Fan while she is at Maud’s. She is going there next Monday. Please excuse the paper.

June 22nd 1913…Many thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive. You may guess I wish I was going to be with you today but no such luck. I am very much looking forward for the time to come for your holiday. I am sure we have happier times together every time we meet. Fancy you starting your house linen do you begin to think dearest that you will soon require it. Well dearest if you have not already heard you will be surprised to hear I have got a house. Father bought George Nicholl’s property Friday it cost £260 we have Harry Hurd to thank for the last £60 he came over Monday & Father asked him if he was going in for it & he said he did not think so as he said it would be worth much more to us than anyone else & in the finish he was the very one to run against us. I shall never think but very little of him now. Dearest you will be able to have some fowls & flower borders & I shall be able to keep a pig so when next year comes I think if you are willing we shall be able to make a start. I have been ringing this morning . Arthur went to Wickwar ringing yesterday we are very busy so I could not get off. I started mowing my new orchard last night don’t be disappointed if I don’t come down to the Show. I shall if I can. I shall have a walk over to your home this afternoon wish you were there. Now dearest I must close pleased to say I am quite well with my fondest love to you always I am dearest always your everloving Percy.

June 30th 1913…My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I was most pleased to receive. I am looking forward to see you at the end of the week I have decided to go to the Show on Saturday do you think you will be able to get out that day & dearest if it is your morning out next Sunday try & arrange with the girls to get out the afternoon & evening instead. I am sure they would not mind changing their day if you ask them from me. I think I shall start down early Saturday morning your Father will be there Saturday but I don’t think he will bike down with me. Dearest we shall be able to have a nice time together if you can get out Sunday do try too. We are very busy with all kinds of work now all last week we started work before 5 o’clock & did not finish till after nine so you may guess I shall be pleased to come to see you for a change. I bought poor Billy’s Fowl House & five fowls they are very nice fowls but he has almost famished them. I have fifteen fowls for you now. Now dearest I must close hoping to see you Saturday & Sunday. With my very fondest love to you always. I am dearest your Everloving Percy. Sorry I have not written you before.

July 7th 1913…My dearest Florrie, Just a line to let you know I am once more landed home safely after another most enjoyable week end how I wish I could see you oftener. Well dearest I was in good time for the car last night I don’t know what time it was when I left you last night but I got to the Victoria Rooms at twelve minutes past ten so you may guess I just put a shift on. I started on my way back this morning just after five though I was in for a soaking it rained well for nearly an hour & when I got home just after seven they were surprised to hear I had been in a storm as it had not reached Slimbridge. I have had a very fair days shoeing there was one waiting for me when I got back & it is five o’clock note & I have still a bit more to do wish I was with you instead I shall be almost counting the days for you to come home. I wish I had thanked Alice for her kindness for doing your duties. I will think of her when pears are ripe. Now dearest I must close hoping you are feeling well. With my fondest love to you always. I am dearest your Everloving Percy.

July 13th 1913…My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive. I am sorry to hear you have a cold I hope you will soon get rid of it. I did not get one this time. I took Maurice to Stinchcombe & got there at five o’clock my cousin had some tea ready for us before we started our work. Well I had not seen the beast before & when I did I thought I had a task before me, we got him out of his house alright but no sooner had I fixed my ropes on him to throw him he seemed like a mad think & soon cleared the deck. He made a rush at my cousin & if he had been a little nearer the gate post I am sure he would have killed him. We then had a job to fasten him up while my cousin went for a man to help hold him & when he came we got him to the ground & the operation was quite successful & now the patient is doing well but never in my life did my arm ever ache so much as they did that day. I told Father it was a little calf or my word I should have heard something. Well dearest I have been over to your home this afternoon they all seem very well. I have been to Church tonight & have been for a walk with Ada Merrett you may guess I wished it had been you. We shall not be the first to have the Bells rung Alfred Morgan & Mary Shipp will be before us their banns have been published twice. I shall be very pleased to see you home dearest. We are going to start work at four o’clock tomorrow morning so now dearest I must close & get to roost. With my very fondest love to you always. I am dearest your Everloving Percy. My four hens started laying last Wednesday I have had thirteen eggs from them since. I hope you will enjoy the few currants.

July 20th 1913…My dearest Florrie, Many thanks for your letter which I am always most pleased to receive. I do hope dearest that your cold has gone by this time. I shall be very pleased to see you home as I think a rest will do you good. I could see when I was with you that you were got much thinner & I told your Father so when I got back but he said he did not notice it. Well dearest take care of yourself I will take care of you later on. Fancy Miss King going to be married as soon. We wont be in a hurry. I have bought a young sow & four more fowls I told you last time that my fowls had laid thirteen eggs now up till today they have laid forty-seven. So my fowl farming is going on fine. I shall be more pleased when I have you to look after them. I have been working at my garden my word I have never had such hard digging before but I am getting on very well with it. I worked at it yesterday afternoon instead of going to Dursley Fete I want to get some of it done before you come home so that I can spend a bit of time with you as you are not home so often as you used to be. I have been to Church twice today we have had a new Parson for a fortnight & he is just alright wish he was here for good. Now dearest I must close hoping you are feeling much better anxiously looking forward for you to be home. With my very fondest love to you always. I am dearest always your everloving Percy. Elsie & Jack are coming home next Saturday week.

7 Barton IV Gt 9 3 7 8 d

Percy and Florence Barton

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