Lily Iddon Drawing by Tom Iddon

Tom's drawingStory of Photo of Lily Iddon

Early 1942 some of the Iddon and Millwood families - Grandma Lily Iddon, Dolly and Dick, Eric, Tom, Joan, Jim & Marjorie and others were gathered at 11 Albermarle Rd for a farewell to Jim prior to his departure "to fight for his country".

Tom, the artist of the family, decided to do a pencil sketch of their Mother. He tore open a large buff envelope - 16 1/2 x 8 1/2 & did a side-face likeness of her.

In those days families did not show emotion to any extent, but to me, his words "Best Wishes Old Lad" cover a very deep feeling, Tom and Jim were very great friends.

Jim left England the next day, the sketch rolled up and stowed in his haversack.

It then travelled with him to the Middle East. First Mesopotamia, Baghdad through what is now Israel, on to the Suez Canal, Cairo, briefly with the Eighth Army then east to India via Basra & Bombay. On to Bareilly and eventually Burma.

In Burma he became very ill, to the extent that I received a telegram from the Indian Army to tell me how very seriously ill he was.

We all know he recovered but was never as fit and well.

He finished his war in Deolali as Colonel in charge of demobilization of thousands of Indian troops.

I had joined him in India on Christmas 1945 as I too had been ill and unable to continue my work in S.O.E

We returned to the UK in 1947.

All this time Tom's sketch had been carted around with him. For many years it had been rolled up at the back of a drawer, but this year I framed it, took a photo of it, had the photo enlarged and here it is for you.

Marjorie Iddon

December 1998