26th May 1916 Friday
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After reporting for duty on his arrival in France back in December, it was Colonel Morgan who took Douglas in his car to meet his new colleagues in the 130th (St.John) Field Ambulance. Now though word spread quickly throughout the local units that Douglas had been denied compassionate leave to attend his father’s funeral. Colonel Morgan must have had his reasons for such an apparently heartless decision, but resentment grew amongst the men. Douglas received this letter of support from D’arcy Edwardes the son of the theatre impresario George Edwardes, famous at that time for his production of musical comedies.
D’arcy Edwardes was a regular soldier who had enlisted in 1907. He was promoted to Major towards the end of 1915 and so it is interesting that he doesn’t understand Colonel Morgan’s decision. Although he was a senior officer when signing off the letter he doesn’t add the prefix Major, indicating that he regarded Douglas as a friend. Sadly D’arcy Edwardes met his own end at Memetz on the Somme a few weeks later on 10th July 1916.
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