20th July 1944

Fine morning, after a quiet night, but wakened early by the roar of ‘planes going out.  Got in rather late, but before 9.30.  Labour rows all morning.  Engledow came down, - what an unpleasant creature he is.  Much argument about poor Wratten’s death.  Apparently we are clear of any claim as it happened in her own time. 

Admitted in the press today that the “diver” attacks on London have very much increased.  Situation is getting worse daily.  What on earth is to happen during the winter?  Actual damage is being kept very secret.

Some of our oats are cut at Wigborough.

This evening cycled down to Sheepen to see how the place looked, and went along the by-pass to see some of Mr. Craig’s cows in the water-meadows.  As I stood there a young woman dressed in pink came along on a cycle, and got off to speak to me.  She was smiling in a most friendly manner, but as soon as she began to speak it was clear that she was quite mad.  Could not understand anything she said, and came away.  Her cycle was brand new.

To Boxted, and had a terrible stomach-ache on the way.  Could not move for 10 minutes.  Went slowly towards the Post soon after midnight, as I had to be there at one.  How eerie these lanes are at night.  Many ‘planes going out, their navigation lights shining.  “Divers” on when I got there, and soon after there was considerable gunfire to the south, and we could see with the glasses a “diver” going over Bradwell apparently coming in from the south-east.  Fear that the Germans must be building new launching-platforms right up the Belgian coast, although one would have thought the distance across the North Sea would have been too great.

Clouds came over very thick, and we were busy the best part of an hour, on the alert, in case any “divers” turned northwards into the Foxes’ area. [Rudsdale's Observer Post at Great Horkesley was known as 'Fox One' and was one of three 'Fox' Posts in North Essex].  At last it was over, and we were able to make the tea.

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