21st November 1942

Going up East Hill this morning, I saw a young Chinese girl walking down, while just behind, on the other side, was an American.

Heard that Martin, in the Town Clerk’s office, has been called up.  He is about 31 or 32, I should think.  This leaves only Buxton, Brown and Harvey, and I hear he will have to go in January.  It is strange that these men like Harvey and Martin, with 10 or 12 years experience in highly skilled work, should be taken, yet War Agricultural Committee men, even under 30, are not generally taken.  All the Borough Treasurer’s staff have gone except about two, but some of the Engineer's are left, waiting to deal with the aftermath of the great air attacks on Colchester.  One of them, “Frenchy” Blackmore, was an R.A.F. pilot before the war, and left the service to come back to the Engineer’s office.

I cannot help wondering if, behind all this, there is some plan of the Regional Office at Cambridge to so reduce Local Government staffs that they will have more power and control over Local Government affairs in the future.  It is now being said openly that Town Councils will be almost abolished after the war, and their powers taken over by Regional officers.  

Fine day, high clouds and some sunshine.  Cycled out to Lawford this afternoon.  Wonderful cloud effects over the Colne Valley, full moon rising on the right.  By half past 8 there was a lovely clear blue sky, the moon fairly blazing in it, not a cloud or a sign of mist anywhere.  A few planes diving about, playing in the moonlight.  

Writing until 10.30.

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