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27 July 2016

11th-12th March 1947: Fred has his school examination papers

11 Tues. Very cold, very dull, very bitter NW wind – an awful day. Cycled to Morden and stood in the catsmeat queue for ¾ of an hour and got some very good meat, also bought saccharin and watercress there. Laurie called to have a lesson in whist; I am teaching him and Gwennie. To station to get a paper.


12 Wed. Morning frost; only a degree or two above freezing all day; very dull, rain commencing midday. Got the groceries locally and took a note to Lily in Botsford. Showed Gwennie my school examination papers and drawings, also school groups: she was very interested. Donald has German measles.

26 July 2016

10th March 1947: no cats' meat available

10 Mon. Rather cold but thawing quite rapidly. The garden was white to begin the day but the ground was showing through in many places by the end of the day. Very dismal, misty rain commencing midday. Cycled to Morden in morning but cats meat shop shut.: bought a pocket book at Woolworths. Cycled to Merton in afternoon but no cats meat there so went to Wimbledon and bought fish. Bought bush tomato seeds at Woolworth’s.

25 July 2016

8th-9th March 1947: Colombo calling

8 Sat. Frost less severe, rising to 6 degs above freezing during the day: some sunshine in afternoon: 4 degs above freezing at night. To Merton to buy fish, haricot beans, split peas etc. Walked there through several inches of slush: in places the pavements are under several inches of slushy water: I have never seen such bad conditions.


9 Sun. Rather cold; actually up to 6 degrees above freezing was recorded: fine sunny day but slight rain at night. The three children called in morning and several others later on their way to Sunday School. John Child called in evening to hear how the short waves were coming in; they should be affected by sunspot activity but I received Radio S.E.A.C. Colombo very loudly.

24 July 2016

7th March 1947: rose pink net for 'radio-gram'

7 Fri. Eight degrees of frost to begin the day. Fine sunny day with freezing and thawing at the same time. Marvellous fringes of long icicles depend from the roofs, the icicles drip and lengthen and glisten in the sunshine with prismatic colours. Conditions underfoot are atrocious. Freezing very hard at night, there being a moon and the air very still and quiet. Got the meat and other things in morning. Took Gwennie and Donald with me to do local shopping in afternoon, bought Gwennie a card of toy kitchen utensils and Donald a blowpipe and ball game. Dyed some curtain net rose pink and fitted it behind the loudspeaker in fret of the radio-gram – looks nice.

23 July 2016

5th-6th March 1947: train lost in snow, cars slip & bump over great mounds

5 Wed. Just a little above freezing point during the day but freezing morning and night. Very dismal with sheets of sleet and frozen snow all day. The fierce E wind drove the snow against the windows with a rattling sound, and it sprayed in round the edges of ill-fitting doors and windows. Cleared the thick snow from footways at back and front of the house. Got the groceries and some fish locally. Took Doris’ plate back & saw Gwennie in bed: there does not seem much the matter with her.

Mr Jones the milkman could not push his truck over the heavily covered roads 


6 Thur. Round about freezing point all day. A little brighter after a night of blizzard. Between 5 and 12 inches of frozen, crunchy snow everywhere. Roads and footways are extremely dangerous. In the midlands and north, trains are snowed under; one train from Manchester to Marylebone was lost temporarily. Mr Jones the milkman could not push his truck over the heavily covered roads and had to deliver milk by hand. In afternoon to buy a cake and a few other things locally. Had to pick up Mrs. Clarke who had fallen at Sydney Road, carried her heavy bag of groceries home for her. A few cyclists were riding but were slithering about dangerously, too risky to be attempted, I think; might have been a spill at a time a car was near; even cars were slipping and bumping over great mounds of frozen snow. Dear Gwennie called and had another lesson in whist.

22 July 2016

3rd-4th March 1947: cruel east wind & blizzard

The snow on the live rail is making the trains flash incessantly  with vivid green light,
which lights up the snow-covered landscape

3 Mon. Very severe white morning frost, very cold day with some weak sunshine and a bitter E wind. To Merton in afternoon to buy fish and beef cubes. Gwennie brought meat for the cats.


4 Tues. Hard black frost, dismal day, cruel E wind. A blizzard commenced midday and continued till time of writing this at 10.20 pm: it looks like going on too. At least four inches of snow fell with three times that depth in the drifts; I should imagine there is two feet of snow outside the dining room window. The snow on the live rail is making the trains flash incessantly with vivid green light, which lights up the snow-covered landscape in a most impressive way: the sky seems ablaze with the man-made lightning. Struggled through the blizzard to Merton to buy cat meat and had to stand in a long queue. Went to Doris to get our usual loaf she takes for us and found Gwennie in bed with a temperature and apparent tonsillitis.