Letters From AC2 Malcolm Davey Royal Air Force To His Parents Herbert And Lillian In Sutton Surrey 1945-1948
Malcolm Davey was born on the 2nd November 1926 in Sutton Surrey. He grew up Brandon Road Sutton with his parents Herbert and Lillian Davey. Sutton was a relatively small town in the 1920s and 30s and although an only child his mother Lillian had grown up in the town and had lots of relatives so Malcolm had a big extended family. The local school was just around the corner and his area to the west of the town still had fields and countryside close to his house.
Letter Dated 30th December 1945 To Mr & Mrs H W Davey, 3 Brandon Road, Sutton, Surrey.
AT 123, 3039129 AC2 Davey M W. No 1 Wing, 5 PDC, RAF Blackpool, Lancs. 30/12/45.
Dear Mum and Dad,
Once again here, I am fit and well, hope you are both the same. Blackpool is a smashing place, infact I've decided to come up here after I'm demobbed on a holiday. And now I will try and describe to you what it is like, the front is about three miles long, sand all the way on which there is three piers, north, south and central, pleasure gardens, amusement parks, swimming pools, pleasure beach, also theatres, cinemas, and odd places including pubs which all go to make Blackpool. Then of course there is the Tower we've heard a lot about it on the radio but believe me it's even better to go there, infact this afternoon I'm going there to see Reginald Dixon- afternoon passed - I've now seen Reggie and believe me, you would have liked to have been there , it was wizard, a whole afternoon musical programme for 9d not bad aye. Besides a super ballroom there is a zoo, aquarium and roof gardens, amusement parks, cafe, circus, boxing and wrestling and the arts. Yesterday afternoon (Saturday) for the first half the organ was played for dancing then after an interval The Tower dance band took over and baby they certainly know how to play. red hot and otherwise.
So much for pleasure, now for duties. We've spent about two hrs since we've been here, thats counting every parade, so you can see we have a lot of time to ourselves. Last night I was on guard but all we did was sleep so that was OK. The weather here has been OK, sun shining every day, except late this afternoon when a mist came down making it very cold. Our billet is very nice and they look after us very well and we are quite comfortable so don't worry. Now as everything in the garden is blooming and I've put your mind at rest I'll close with wishing you all the best and may God bless you both. S.D.S.
Love and Kisses
P.S. Have I left my scissors at home?
Letter Dated 31st December 1945 To Mr & Mrs H W Davey, 3 Brandon Road, Sutton, Surrey.
AT 123. 3039129 AC2 Davey M.W. No 1 Wing, 5 PDC, RAF Blackpool, Lancs. 31/12/45
Dear Mum and Dad,
Here we are again happy as can be, all good friends and jolly good company. How is Sutton getting on without me, not so good I expect and especially when all you good people are making New Year resolutions, what's Dads going to be, never another pint, only quarts. Have you seen anymore of Derrick? He goes on the 3rd. And what about young Mance, he'll soon be in bell bottoms. After I posted my last letter to you I once went again to the Tower to hear Reginald Dixon. He played another popular selection of dance tunes so I was in my glory.
So today is New Year's Day, well well, and do you know how Bill and I welcomed it, no! Well it was like this, first of all we went to the cinema, after which we had supper in a cafe then for a pint of beer in a very crowded pub, as all the pubs were, and then a walk at at 10.30 p.m. along the north prom (three miles there and back) past the Tower along the south prom (one mile) to the bottom of our road. As we were walking along the north prom, the sea was up to the wall making a terrific din as it hit the wall and as it rushed back to do the same performance over and over again, out at sea there was a mist which clung to the water and an erie blackness beyond. We stood and watched all this amidst the quietness of the old year and the sprey came up and hit us in the face. On arriving at the bottom of our road the time was 11.50 p.m. so down to the sands we went. All the lights had gone out along the south prom, the trams had stopped running, sorry they call them street cars as there of American patten. We walked to the waters edge and as we did the bells of the churchs stopped, we were alone, quiet and everything was still, we heard the water running up the sands, we could see the erie white horses and the mist and darkness beyond. We lighted a cigarette, it was two minutes to twelve, we gazed out to sea expecting to see something but nothing appeared. Then as if controlled by one hand all the church bells peeled out and so the New Year came in and the old went out. We walked up the beach onto the prom and there back to our billet. It was the first of the first, nineteen forty six.
Today we have been on parade twenty five minutes, ten in the morning and fifteen in the afternoon so this morning after parade we went back to bed until after dinner time, this life is making me lazy. Tonight we are going the Tower to hear some more music so that should be OK. I'm going to pay accounts tomorrow to see if I can that business settled. I'm sending home to Dad two seaside postcards which I hope he will add to his collection. I don't think there is any more to say except to wish you both once again a happy and prosperous new year. May God bless you both.
Love & Kisses S.D.S.
Letter Dated 21st January 1946 To Mr & Mrs H W Davey, 3 Brandon Road, Sutton, Surrey.
3039129 AC2 Davey M.W. Draft 1550 RAF S.E.A.C.
Cairo West Monday 21st Jan 1946.
Dear Mum And Dad,
Well this time I am really shaking the sand out of my shoes, it's the desert, miles and miles of sand. On arrival at Castel Benito yesterday we had a very nice hot meal, followed by a wash and brush up. The air was lovely with a warm breeze coming in from the sea. Afterwards we went to the NAAFI and had a jar of tea on the verander just as dusk was falling. It was there that I posted my last letter to you but I omitted to put "In Transit" on the back so wether they will accept it remains to be seen. If however you don't get it let me know and I'll try and send a duplicate copy, it's about my last hours in England and my first over the continent.
We took off from Castel Benito at 18.33 hrs B.S.T. -19.30 hrs N. Africa time and we flew through the darkness, there wasn't much to see, only a few twinkling lights, signals etc. The best sight of the journey was the airfield here light up with the flare path right down the centre. We arrived here at 01.40 hrs Castel Benito time 02.40 hrs
Cairo. We've lost so far two hours which when you get into bed at 03.55 hrs is and can be taken as a dim view. We leave her ( take off) at 17.00 hrs Cairo time 15.00 hrs B.S.T. The camp in which we are insituated (tents) is 30 miles from the airfield, so we had a lovely open air truck journey through the desert at 02.00 hrs, with the moon shining. From this camp we can see the Pyramids, not bad, there about a mile away from here. The only "B" is that we have had our money changed into Egyption currency, my God what a job though. I can now understand the rate of exchange. I've attached a list of rate of exchange so you can see what is! The only other point is that on reaching barracks it will be changed again.
We have just had dinner, it consisted of salmon, peas and cheese, jam tart and custard, one orange and that reminds me that in the NAAFI this morning I had a tomato roll, two jaffa oranges and two bananas, gosh they were certainly good. Out here the It..... do all the dirty work, such as keep the camp clean, clean, ablutions, latrines, cook houses etc. Along the road the wogs try to sell you all the things under the sun. Well I must close now as I want to post this letter off to you so for now all the best and God Bless.
All The Best,
Letter Dated 1st February 1946 To Mr & Mrs H W Davey, 3 Brandon Road, Sutton, Surrey.
3039129 AC2 Davey M.W. "P" Staff H.Q. Base Air Forces RAF India 1/2/46
Dear Mum and Dad,
So today starts a new month, last new months day (New Years Day) we were at Blackpool , my my time flies. I expect your surprised at getting two letters bang on top of one another but as I have nothing to do I thought that my time could be better employed by writing home. So Dads still on the settey, gosh does he live there. I didn't mention in my last letter that I was enclosing three paper cuttings about the R.A.F. strikes which appeared in the local Delhi paper "The Statesmen", what I want you to do is to read them, also the two which I'm sending today and let me have the hubbies opinion also any newspaper cuttings on the subject and also when you have read them would you please return same. Out here the weather is very fine, sunshine and blue sky, like an old English summer, it's a bit cold first thing and last thing at night but at midday it's boiling. Will endevour to write to "Hinton" as soon as I can but out here one cannot keep writing, besides we do it each day. By slow degrees we are picking up the lingo and most of it English slang which originated from India and was brought back by troops to the UK.
I'm sending home my surplus UK stamps. I have just shown them to our Cpl who replied, "Coo foreign stamps, is this the country that is out of bounds to BORs." BORs stands officially for British Other Ranks, thats from Warrant Officers downwards but we call it "Browned Of Romeos". You see this Cpl has been out here three and a half years and he comes from Edgware, we've taken to him a lot. If by chance you come accross and good pictures or photographs of "Joan Leslie" please send them out - thank you.
So Doris has been making enquiries, well, well, I hope you play your cards right because I'm the bloke who will suffer if anything goes wrong. How are the neighbours, please remember me to them and so forth, also tell them that they may moan and groan about the UK but theres no place like the UK even when your leading a life of luxury out here, never the less I'm happy and I'm pleased to have the chance to see the world, and I've travelled a few odd miles and seen a number of places, and it also broadens ones outlook on life, also when you get back to the UK you know what the other half of the worlds doing, what say you Dad?
Well time flies and its about time I had a cup of char, there you see the word char, how many people in the UK use it, millions and how many know that it's the Indian way of saying tea. Every day and all day and night come to that a Char Wolla - Tea Boy comes round and at any time you can get a mug of tea, sweet Indian tea, I've drunk more char since I've been out here than I did in the UK so don't be frightenend to mention tea. How is the food situation at home? and how is the new business down the street progressing. I'm sorry to hear that Mr & Mrs A had flu, I hope they are better now. I read in the paper where the UK had a 75 MPH gales, did you cop it. So once again the page of scrapbook turns and with it my very best wishes to you both and don't do anything that I wouldn't.
Love & Kisses (S.D.S)
P.S.There's a shortage of decent girls out here so please send some out.
P.P.S. Ive just written six pages of foolscap paper to the office , that should please them.