Lynne Wickson provided this letter and a copy of the dinner menu which her husband Frank sent his mother from Europe on 2 January 1945.
Pte. F.E. Wickson, Tuesday 2 January 1945
Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa
Canadian Army B.W.E.F. (British Western Expeditionary Force)
We had a good time here yesterday. Because we were in the front line for Christmas we had our big celebration New Years. We had six kegs of beer and a real good dinner with turkey and all the trimmings followed up with Christmas cake, cinnamon buns, doughnuts and candy; also plum pudding. After our dinner we saw the picture “And the Angels Sing”. We had the dinner in a large hall in town but now we are near the front waiting to go back up. I got the menu of the dinner which I am sending in an ordinary envelope. It has all the major battles and a few of the minor ones I’ve been in so it should make interesting reading.”
New Year’s Dinner of 1 January 1945 – “B” Coy Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa (MG).
From Frank’s “Wartime Peacetime” story, which I am editing at the moment, it appears that for this dinner they taken to the Aakland Hall in Nijmegen, Holland. That day, their commander, Major Jim Macpherson was told that he was awarded the Military Cross for his actions around Caen, when he had been second-in-command of “C” Company.
Happy New Year.