2nd June 1944

Fine and cool, sunshine and high rolling clouds.  A few ‘planes going out.  Talk in café at lunch about a big explosion in Cambridgeshire [EJR later note: 'This was in Soham Station'], where an ammunition train has blown up.  The press have not said where this happened, but a woman who lives above the café said she was sure it was at Littleport because her brother lived there, and she was going to send a telegram at once to ask if he was alright.  Another woman, in the café, was telling how a friend of hers had heard that her brother’s name had been mentioned on the Japanese radio, as being alive and well in a prison camp.  This had been picked up by a listener in the South of England.

Alan Gifford phoned from Chelmsford this afternoon and offered me a seat on the National Council for Rural Industries, to represent the Eastern Counties.  Pleased to do what I can, and accepted at once.

To Repertory Theatre tonight – good.

Afterwards went to Holly Trees.  Poulter told me a story about soldiers and prostitutes breaking into Berechurch Hall and stealing a quantity of stuffed birds.  Why I don't know.  He also told me that Rabett, of the Lexden and Winstree Rural District Council, heard Poulter talking about my criticisms of the Council’s attitude on rural housing, and that yesterday he (Rabett) phoned Poulter to try to find out who had been making these criticisms.  Poulter would not tell him.

Going back to Boxted saw a huge grey owl winging slowly through the dusk near Solway Brook.  ‘Planes coming back low beneath the clouds.  Tried to make some ‘phone calls from Woodside, but the exchange would not answer.

Bed at 1a.m.

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