13th April 1945

Brilliant fine warm day.  No talk anywhere about President’s Rooseveldt's death yesterday – apparently not worthy of a moment’s consideration.  O’Neil [from the Ministry of Works] came today, an inspection, and said he had travelled from Yarmouth with three or four U.S. soldiers in the carriage, but Rooseveldt was not even mentioned.  Yet we cannot say what the outcome of this may be.  The “Daily Express” has the somewhat misleading headlines – PRESIDENT ROOSEVELDT DEAD.  ROAD TO BERLIN OPEN.  There is a very strong hint that Churchill will announce the “end” of the war next Thursday, and in the House yesterday an odious comparison was made with a similar announcement about the South African War, after which it continued for another 2 years.

Curtis Edwards in again for an hour, looking very ill.  Met Mrs. Saltmarsh yesterday, and she agreed that he is really very ill, but nothing can be done.

Met O’Neil at 1.30, and had lunch with him.  Went all over the town with him, showed him everything.  Felt dead tired.  Had tea, then this evening took him to Leverington – walking all the way because he cannot ride a cycle.  Showed him Rabbit Hill, Leverington Church, Roman Bank, and called at the Hall, where Mrs. Munday made us very welcome.  Back to the church with Mrs. M. and went up the tower.  Walked back to Wisbech in the dusk, talking about Mortimer Wheeler, now a General, and Ward Perkins and Stuart Piggott, now both Lt. Cols.  O’Neil had been doing some work on air-photos after raids, and said that the efficiency of US and British raids was often very poor.  More often than not they hit the wrong places.  In a recent “special” attack on the Hague, to destroy the Gestapo HQ, a school was hit by mistake and utterly destroyed.  He has been doing a lot of research among the ruins of Yarmouth, with most interesting results.  Says the Rows are almost entirely destroyed and he fears the Borough Engineer will wipe out all that remain.

Bed at 10.30, very tired.  Chestnut tree blooming at Leverington.

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