You may remember a few weeks ago I introduced you to some old pals who had not met since 1943 when they served together on the forts in the Solent.
I’m glad to say that both old gentlemen are doing well in their 90th and 92nd years.
One of them, Bill Neal, who now lives at Boarhunt over the hill from Fareham, has just produced a book about his time on the forts, in Southsea Castle and later in the desert.
A Terrier’s War is an easy read and will interest anyone locally and those who served in the Territorials.
I must tell you that Bill does not do modern PC and some of the phrases in the book are what we used to say ‘near to the knuckle’, to the point and my type of reading.
Bill left the Solent forts and ended up in the R.E.M.E and travelled 20,000 miles from Liverpool to South America back across the Atlantic to Durban, South Africa then to Bombay and Basra.
His escapades are all written up in detail.
On arrival at Basra there was a 25-mile trip across the desert to a tented camp near the village of Zubair. All a long way from the green fields of Bill’s home in Droxford.
At another camp he was made a member of the PAI (Persia and Iraq Force) and at this camp all aid to Russia was assembled after being landed from American liberty ships at Basra.
After being checked over they were driven by Indians of the Transport Corp to Persia.
From there the vehicles were taken on by Russian drivers who took them over the Urals to the Eastern Front.
I wonder how many know about this?
This book is what I call a ‘cannot-put-down’ read. Once you have started it, you will read it non-stop.
Any profits from the book will go to the Poppy Appeal. It can be had direct from Bill by ringing him on 01329 832317 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org. It costs £7.50 with p&p.