»  Letter: Monday, February 4, 1974

    E.A. Derbyshire to John Derbyshire

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Mrs J.R. Derbyshire
62 Friars Avenue
Northampton NNP P4X

Mr John Derbyshire, Bsc
2, Harbor Lane
New Rochelle
N.Y. 10805

Feb. 4th

My dear Son

Thank you for letter received on Saturday, always lifts my spirits, especially to know you are well & happy. There's nothing yet from Hong Kong.[1] I will do as you ask if anything comes. Other than colds Dad & I are well, creaking a bit but still sea worthy!! I bought a small piece of bathroom carpet for £5 on Saturday so thought I'd paint the bathroom while I'm at it, I did the ceiling yesterday, Ouch!! painting wall today & other woodwork tomorrow, it will look quite nice & fresh. I plan to do quite a bit of decorating this Spring, taken in easy stages, though. I think I shall have to find someone to do ceilings, I'm not the girl I was. I still keep at 10 stone, though want to lose ½ stone before summer comes.

I am going to Cornwall for a week with Mrs Lamb on June 29th. I've always longed to see Cornwall & Devon. I only wish I had my little car — if I could afford to run it — we'd have had a tour round, could have done it cheaper. Anyway to hell with the expense, I haven't had a proper holiday for years. Judy & Allan may be going to West Ireland where his folks have a cottage. We don't see much of them, but I mustn't whine. I know Judy doesn't have much time, but we get a bit lonely some times, its not so bad when we can get in the garden. Weather here is mixed, foggy & damp today, but it has been fantastic really, no ice or snow so far.

I was taken out to lunch on Saturday by Mrs Isherwood (Jean) & friend, we went to The "Berni,"[2] had sherry, duck, etc. I was nearly canned!! It made a nice change.

My brother Joe died last week, he has the son in Canada. I don't know whether you ever met Joe.[3] I hadn't seen him since Granny & Grandad died 13 yrs ago, but it means another bit of family breaking up. We had a happy home life as children. Well that's the way it goes.

The electricity bill is £15 - 17p John, much less than last year, but the gas bill will be high, that hasn't come yet, so leave it till then dear. I shall not refuse help, it means I can leave my small capital alone, you'll get it back some day if the Government leave us any!! All for now my darling. Take care, do write.

as always - my love

Mother & Dad.




  1. I had applied for a job as a college lecturer in Hong Kong, a position I had seen advertised in the New York Times.
  2. The Berni Inn was a grill restaurant in Northampton.
  3. If I ever did, I have retained no memory of it.