Wartime love letters found in curtains that had been donated to charity shop

Published on 2nd August 2018

The two letters from Dolly to Billy

By Leicester Mercury | Posted 30 June, 2018

Charity shop workers were amazed when a 70-year-old love letter to a prisoner of war in Thailand dropped out of a set of donated curtains.

The envelope appears to have been dropped into the LOROS hospice store in Glenfield accidentally, along with the curtains.

The envelope is dated January 20, 1944, and is addressed to Private William Gower at a prisoner of war camp in Thailand. It contains two letters from Dolly Lowe, who lived in Cheshire.

One of the letters, which shares the same date as the postmark on the envelope, states: “My Dearest Billy, How are you darling, I am fine, thinking of you and hope you will soon be home again.

“Keep smiling dear. All my love, Dolly.”

The other - undated - letter is longer, and a sentence about how Dolly hopes Billy will receive the letter the next day suggests it was written while he was in the UK.

In the four-page document, Dolly talks about her day and how she has been working late recently but does not mind too much because her boss is nice.

She also tells Billy not to worry about not being able to get anything for her birthday, adding: “I never got you anything for Christmas and you gave me so much.”

The letter concludes: “Well, my dear, there’s not much else to tell you and I haven’t been anywhere special so cheerio for now, my love.”

Staff at the shop in Station Road, Glenfield, are keen to track down anyone who can help shed more light on what happened to Billy and Dolly, and, if possible, reunite the letters with family members.

Sarah Forryan, area manager for LOROS, said: “What a wonderful find. They’ve been so well preserved, and Dolly’s writing is really clear.

“Wouldn’t it be lovely to find the descendants of the couple to be able to give the letters back to the family to keep as a lasting memento?

We have an address for where Dolly once lived, so if anyone believes they have a family link, we’d love to hear from you.”

Dolly lived in the village of Cuddington, which is near to Northwich.

If you believe you have a family connection and want to find out more, write to LOROS Marketing Department, Groby Road, Leicester, LE3 9QE, email marketing@loros.co.uk or call 0116 231 8447.

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