4th March 1943

Wakened by firing at 5 o’clock, and after 10 minutes or so heard sirens, but it did not last long.  The dogs barked incessantly.  Up at 7, to find clouds, but the sun coming through.  Worried as to whether anything had happened at Colchester last night, so went early, and went by the Hythe and through New Town, to see all was well at the old house.  Looked for a casualty board at the Library, but nothing there.  Nobody at the office seemed to have had any alarming experiences, except that Daphne said showers of splinters fell in Layer Road.  Later, Dyer came back from Layer de la Haye, and said several small bombs had fallen near the Reservoir, on Hill Farm Land, but without damage.  Everybody reports lots of shell cases all over the place, especially at Copford.  Capt Folkard said a plane was brought down at Horkesley by the Colchester Home Guard, but I don't know if this is true.

Came out at 5.15 and went to the Hippodrome to see “My Sister Eileen”, a most amusing, jolly, film, so far removed from our present life, although several characters mentioned the war, and one man said he was an air-raid warden.  But it is one thing to talk about a war 3,000 miles away, and another to be in it.

Cycled back in the dusk, birds singing, lovely golden sunset.  Tractors working in the fields. 

Mr. Warren came in this afternoon on his way from Ipswich, and said he had bought 4 Suffolk horses for £502.  Only two in the whole sale were under £100, and several geldings made £200.  One made £250, and a two-year old filly brought in £310.  Such figures as this do not seem to indicate any immediate decay in horseflesh.  I expect we shall have trouble with headquarters about these purchases, as we were not supposed to exceed £100 per horse.  It is a strange thing if the Government cannot buy good horses for their own farms.

No sign of a break in the fine weather.  Spring drilling going ahead even at Peldon.


Anonymous said...


The four horses cost the equivalent of £19,383 today!
A quick look online I found a show jumper for sale now for offers of around £20,000.

Mike Dennis

E J Rudsdale said...

Many thanks for this information, Mike - that makes a very useful comparison. Best wishes, CP