13th August 1915

Off Hebburn. The “hands” started coaling ship at an early hour this morning and little sleep could be got after 5 a.m. 1100 tons of coal was taken in by 5 p.m. Leave was given from 6 p.m. until 11-30 p.m  and I reckon the men earnt it. It seemed a very miserable day for we have not been troubled by the discomforts of a “coal ship day” for such a long time. We had to dress several small injuries and one man sustained a badly sprained ankle and had to be put to bed. I think everybody was very glad when the coal had been taken in and stowed in the bunkers. A huge floating crane came alongside today to lift out the fore 7.5″ gun which has been found to be defective. A new one has also to be hoisted in and placed in position in the turret.

Our S. B. S. informs us that the Zeps. were reported ashore as being at the mouth of the Tyne and the people would not go to bed for fear of bombs being dropped on their houses. Many of the people of Jarrow and Hebburn walked the streets all night. The dockyards were put in darkness at midnight and the men sent home from night work. All precautions were taken in these parts against an attack by Zeps.

The Steward and Pomroy obtained leave from 1 p.m. today until 11 a.m. tomorrow for the purpose of sending their wives home. They are lucky to get the leave under the present conditions. We had a pretty busy morning and have now four bed cases. However this afternoon I managed to find time to write a p. c. to George Bond, just to “help him over the stile” a bit in case he is having a bad aftermath from the holidays. I also wrote a letter to Marion in reply to hers. Ask her to have you in home occasionally to cheer you up during my absence. In return I offered to look after Joe if he is left alone at any time. Guess that’s a bargain eh!

Eighteen months ago one of our E. R. A’s, hearing that I had a camera to dispose of, offered to buy it if I cared to send home and have it sent on board. I didn’t like to chance the camera having such a long journey, so I said we had better to wait until a more suitable opportunity presented itself. I brought the camera back with me after the 10 days leave with the intention of doing some photography on board. But I think the prices of chemicals too high to allow of my doing anything in this line, so I thought I would try to sell the old machine. I spoke to the E. R. A. who wanted it so many months ago and he said he would buy it altho’ he had just bought a very fine Kodak camera (£5-5). The bargain was struck and he took the camera home today. It seemed like parting with an old friend, for I have taken several photographs during the four years I have had it, including some of you dear. But I can’t see the good of keeping the machine hanging about doing nothing so I have given it over to a new master.

Well I think this is all I have to note today. This time last week I was at Birmingham I think en route for Newcastle. I have been over the various times and incidents connected with last Friday and now that I have lived over those glorious days of a week ago I shall be better and shall soon recover I hope.

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