The Freda Laycock Memorial Web Site
This site is dedicated to the memory of Freda Laycock
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Freda's Diaries - March/April 1943
Freda kept a diary for a two year period during the war - 1943 and 1945. Here we reproduce her daily record of those times.
Breakfast at Badembee. Left 9.30, shopping in Makeni, tea at Binholi left 4.30. Car broke down 5pm. 8pm lorry came up, mended car, back at 9.30. Dinner and bed.
Washed hair, girls class - 1st aid. Siesta. Sewing and talking in the evening, Ione gave us snaps.
Girls class, sewing later. Pa Birch, 2 cinema boys came to lunch. Boys stayed to tea. Walk later, saw girls combing their hair. Bandage class for girls in evening.
Teaching girls bed making. YMCA men came to lunch. Lt. G.called and 4 army boys in evening for drink.
Bathed Frances for girls. Dr Madden came for lunch and clinic. Out to field ambulance for dinner, a jolly crowd of men. Saw Southern Cross!
Up 4 am, by ambulance to train. Karoma* missed train. Joined it at Maburka. Engine de- railed at 12.30. Had chop on train, made tea at engine. Boiled eggs at side of line. Went for a walk to engine and down road. Writing letters on the line side. Engine arrived 8pm. Went to club at Bowie for tea. Met by Jack, John, Geoff at 5pm.
*Karoma was a native helper of mums whom she talked of quite a lot. He wrote
to her whilst she was in Sierra Leone requesting help at times - see letters
Mail waiting for us. 13 letters, 7 papers. Unpacking am. Duty at 1pm. On Ward 27. Not very busy but dead tired. Geoff rang up at 5pm.
Half day today. Geoff came for tea. Went to see Julia at 5 she is boarded home. Small mail arrived 6 letters, 6 papers.
I was moved to Ward 6, another half day. Went to beach, Dr Maddon was there. Win stayed to go for a walk with Geoff. 5 more letters arrived, letter writing in evening.
10 -1. Letter writing. Called to see Julia for half an hour after tea. Patients on Ward 6 are very lively.
Half day. Admitted American Ac. App. Win and I walked to town shopping. Bought red vyella, took it to be made up. Spent up. Julia went on board at 5pm.
10 -1 Washed hair am not too busy on ward.
Half day. Quite a busy morning. Will, Stella Edwards ,Win, Geoff, Jack and I rode to Kor??t. Walked to Leicester Peak. Picnic, had a fire. Back at 8pm. Unit dance in evening.
Morning in bed. Went to service, Malaki was the preacher. Very busy half day on duty.
Half day, sewing in afternoon. Walk after tea. Sewing again in evening.Geoff rang Win suggested walk on Wed, Jack to come too.
On duty Ward 6. Went to prepare Ward 28 for survivors, 100 expected. Should have been 10-1 , had 2- 5 instead, no half day. Back to Ward 6.
Half day. Sewing and writing all day.
16 survivors arrived early am. I did not see them or look after them. 10-1. Shopping bought 2 pouffes and wallet. Went to dentist, impression for bottom teeth. Busy day on Ward.
Half day. Sewing most of day.
10 - 1. Busy on Ward. Went to R.E. dance in evening. About 9 couples there Foster, Mac, Hutch, Welch, Hayward and I.
6am duty on Extension Ward 26 - skins. Hectic morning. Had photo taken. Jack and Geoff came to tea, took us to service.
Changed off duty. Another half day. Friends came to tea, sat on gun turret chatting to them. Making a nightie.
10-1 Lt. Evans came to see me on the ward and down to the mess for tea. Win and I had a walk to the gun turret and sat there chatting. A lovely moonlight night.
Half day, went to beach, had tea with Geoff.
10-1 went to town shopping. Called at dentists.
Win off duty with me now, went for a walk to brook, walked up brook,
bananas, limes and figs growing.
10-1 not out today, short walk to gun turret, early to bed.
Half day. Busy did not go to morning service. 4pm service, Phil Jones spoke.
10-1 Shopping bought dress length
Half day. bathing at Lumley. Mail arrived.
10-1 more mail
Played tennis with Grace, ? and Jean Waugh. Had invitation to Military Ball Tower Hill. Small mail again today.
Colonel's inspection. Saw Major Gollam ( dentist) in afternoon
Half day. Geoff, Will, Win and I went bathing off Lumley. Took our tea, had a glorious day. I lost 2 shoe heels.
Half day. Sewing. Called to see the Kennedys in the evening.
10-1 Moved skins to Ward 28 and 29.
Half day. Bathing at Lumley.
10-1 Shopping. Bought 8 straw baskets for 18 shillings
Half day Tennis with Grace ? and Ceizar.
10-1 very tired. Did not go down to Kennedys, Win went alone
Jack and Geoff came up to tea. Went to Cathedral. Tea at Kennedys. Service at Sailor's Institute
Shopping in town.
Day off Win, Geoff and I had taxi to beach,
lunch and tea there. Jack joined
Half day. Beach at 6pm with Mrs Kennedy. Grace Davies was with us.
10-1, gramophone recital in evening
Picnic at Gloucester. Will, Win, Jack, Geoff, Miss Davies. Made fire ? had kettle. Dance in hall later "our Sgts dance enjoyed it very much."
10-1 Service at 11.45 Malacki spoke. Letter writing later.
Half day Geoff came up to tennis
Half day bathing
10-1 Shopping in town. To Mrs
Boston's for fitting. Bought material for grey skirt.
April 23rd (Good Friday)
Half day Service in morning. Back with Win etc. Usual beach ambulance
Half day, Jack and Geoff up for tea.
Went to service in Cathedral. Chop at Kennedys. Service at Sailors Institute. Wilkinson gave Win and I snaps of up country
10-1 No transport to town
Half day went to beach
Tennis with Malacki,? And Sharma!
Walked down with Win and Geoff. Jack admitted to hospital. Saw him in
Jack gave us snaps and had collected my
necklet*. !0-1 mail again. 12