19th April 1943

Lovely morning, great white clouds floating serenely, and a fresh S.W. wind.  Took Mother a dozen eggs this morning, which pleased her a good deal.

War Agricultural Committee at Birch, short agenda, and the Chairman gone for 10 days fishing.  We got done by 5, and I came right back to Lawford with Moorhouse.  About the middle of the afternoon the wind changed to N.W. and it began to rain.  Everybody was delighted, jumping up to look out of the windows.  It has been badly needed.

At tea time Gardner Church [a member of the Committee] gave a description of the plane that was brought down last Thursday morning at Layer Breton.  It fell on Stamps Farm, in a grass field near the house.  He saw the whole thing, and as a Head Warden had to go over at once.  There was one man killed.

One engine broke lose, and went clean over the top of the house into the garden on the other side.  The other three of the crew baled out, two landing at Wigborough and one towards Mersea.  One was on Abbots Hall and one at Sherwins.  Church’s account was most dramatic, yet told in such simple language.  Extraordinary how the country people accept these incidents now as a matter of course.  

Col. Furneaux [a member of the Committee] said he felt particularly nervous during this attack.  Surely the gallant colonel never feels nervous?  Are colonels human after all? 

Rain still continuing tonight, and the wind growing stronger.

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