Extract from WW1 letter dated 28th March 1917
From David Taylor BEF France to May Muggridge in Beckenham
“….When you are especially busy and have some particular thing on or perhaps the Germans are giving some trouble you will suddenly get a message asking how many rounds of ammunition you have, or how may picks and shovels…An interfering old general, the chief of our little lot of generals, came along and found the captain of another company without his belt and promptly went for him right and left…we have since had a special order…that all officers are to wear belts. It is so important you see, even though you can’t get a decent wash. I have just had a wash and shave in water taken from a shell hole. This water is always somewhat muddy, but a wash is a wash…”