CROWN COPYRIGHT: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES, WO95/3990
INSPECTIONS AND WORK DONE DURING THE MONTH AWAY FROM HEADQUARTERS
INSPECTIONS AND WORK DONE DURING THE MONTH AWAY FROM HEADQUARTERS
Visited 14 General Hospital where I saw the Matron, Miss Fox, QAIMNS, and went round some of the wards in the Officers’ Division. Saw a young Australian officer badly injured, who was named McArthur. His mother was with him, and I arranged for A/Sister Loughron, who was in the area, to be transferred to the unit to do special duty with him, as she was a friend of the family.
Called at Headquarters, WAAC, Wimereux, in order to thank the Controller for accommodating the nurses of 54 and 55 General Hospitals when their units were destroyed during the recent storm. I said that as soon as possible those still remaining should be transferred to the various units in the Boulogne area, so as to release their rooms and enable them to get out the WAAC reinforcements from home who were being delayed.
Then I went to 55 General Hospital where I saw the Matron, Miss Macdonald, and the OC Colonel Roderick. The patients had been distributed amongst the various units in the area, and the staff were busy trying to re-establish the camp, the Matron and Assistant Matron having remained to assist. I discussed the question of the rumoured discontent of which Mrs. Furse had informed me, and the Matron expressed much astonishment. She informed me that the Commandant No.1 Rest Camp, had invited herself and 24 of her staff to a whist drive. The CO had allowed them to accept the invitation and an ambulance was sent to take them and to bring them back. On arrival, no officer was to be seen and the whist drive had been got up by the Non-commissioned officers of the unit. She was extremely upset when she found the position in which she was placed and was doubtful as to what she should do and waited until I visited her to report the matter to me.
Left Boulogne in the afternoon for St. Omer, where I stayed at the Sisters’ Quarters, 10 Stationary Hospital and where we were disturbed all night with constant air-raids, most of the staff being able to seek shelter in the cellars of the convent, where the Mess is established.
Visited No.7 General Hospital where I saw the Matron, Miss Keene, who was on the sick list, suffering from cystitis. The CO, Colonel Waring, said that he was arranging for her to be transferred to 14 General Hospital for treatment. He said it was very probable that she would be off duty for some time, but it was decided that I should wait until the result of the examination was known before sending a Matron, and in the mean time the Assistant Matron, Sister J. Fyfe, QAIMNSR would carry on.
From there I went to the 4th Army Headquarters where I had lunch with the DMS, Surgeon-General O’Keefe, and where the question of BRCS nurses working in the Army was freely discussed. He did not understand that it was against the regulations for any of the BRCS nurses to work in military units, nor did he understand that the VADs now working at La Panne in a BRCS unit where they are not at all happy could not be transferred to a military unit. This I fully explained to him, saying that it was under War Office instructions that no member of the nursing staff could work in a military unit unless selected and sent out by the War Office.
After lunch visited 36 CCS at Zuydcoote – OC Colonel Thompson, and Sister in charge, Miss Smyth, QAIMNS. This unit is established in part of a French Hospital – the position is excellent and all the arrangements are first-rate. I learnt that 34 CCS was opening quite close, and arranged that Miss D. P. Foster, TFNS, the senior Sister at 36 CCS, should take over the charge when the unit was ready, and that I should select a suitable staff from the Base. This unit is intended only for medical and shell-shock cases.
I then went to Oosthoek where I visited 24, 39 and 1 Canadian CCS, all in most excellent positions, well arranged and everything apparently going most smoothly. There were a large number of wounded men in each of these units. No.24 CCS is particularly good, being composed entirely of Nissen huts, which are most wonderfully arranged, hot and cold water laid on, electric light and all conveniences of a small base hospital.
Returned to No.10 Stationary Hospital for the night, and was again disturbed by a considerable amount of bombardment all night. In the morning we learnt that some officers had been killed and that bombs had been dropped in front of the Officers’ Hospital breaking all the windows in the building.
In the morning went over General Petain’s house, which has just been taken over for the staff of 59 General Hospital – most suitable in every respect when certain alterations which were found necessary have been completed. To enable all the staff to be accommodated in one unit, huts are being put up in the grounds to accommodated 20 nurses.
Left for Calais – had lunch at the Sisters’ Mess at 30 General Hospital. Everything seemed thoroughly well arranged and comfortable. The accommodation is now entirely hutted and the arrangements for the nursing staff are in every respect suitable. The hospital is used mainly for nursing local cases – there are a certain number of officers and 500 beds are set apart for non-Sisters cases. Went with the Matron, Miss Harvey, TFNS, to see the new Isolation Hospital which is an Annexe of 30 General Hospital and at which Miss Prendergast, QAIMNSR is Acting Matron. There is still very much still to be done here – the hospital was full of patients and everyone busy. Annexes are needed – at present there is no electric light or conveniences of any kind in the bunks or wards, but all these things have been put in for and eventually this should prove to be a useful unit. Returned to Abbeville in time for dinner.
Visited 59 CCS at GHQ and saw the OC, Colonel Gowans, and the Sister in charge, Miss Corbishley, QAIMNS. This is a useful unit in part of the French military barracks – the patients are mainly local sick and the staff seems almost too large for the work needed there. The wards are well ventilated, beautifully clean and nicely kept and the patients, I am sure, are most comfortable. The nursing staff are accommodated in a little house near their work and have a nice sitting-room and Mess-room, where they are extremely comfortable, and they have hired a piano. After tea I went to GHQ where I learnt that there had been a severe aerial bombardment the night before at Calais, Boulogne, St. Omer, Camiers and the 4th Army. I discussed with the DGMS the question of the VAD Efficiency Stripe and the advisability of having some distinguishing mark for VAD members who have completed 2 years’ service and are capable of performing Staff Nurses’ duties. I suggested that a Silver “S” might be adopted as is used in some hospitals at home and I undertook to find a sample “S” for him to see and to put the matter up officially.
Left Abbeville for Frevent where I inspected No.6 Stationary Hospital, going round the hospital with the Matron, Miss Daly and the CO Colonel Harding. This is a large hutted hospital, chiefly for self-inflicted and accidental wounds, and there is also a large section for eye cases. Everything was in most excellent order, the gardens were looking beautiful and were made more attractive by several immense regimental badges made by the men out of various coloured broken bottles fixed in concrete beds. These were most ornamental and were wonderfully made. The Sisters are accommodated in huts, all very comfortable. I also went through the Mess, where the tables were laid for lunch – everything looked charming. Miss Stinton, QAIMNS will take over Miss Daly’s duties during her absence on leave. From there I went to No.12 Stationary Hospital at St. Pol, where I saw the Matron, Miss Phillips, QAIMNS, and stayed for lunch.
After lunch went to Lillers and saw the DMS 1st Army and talked to him about the question of British Sisters being employed in Portuguese CCS. He and Captain Parkinson accompanied me to Merville to see the Portuguese CCS. We were shown over the hospital which at present, according to their computation, accommodates 250 patients: personally I thought it very much over-crowded. They have a most up-to-date Operating Theatre – 3 tables and Anaesthetising Room – with every possible appliance. They apparently wish to have British Sisters there and I was asked by the DGMS to report on the matter. I learned from the Portuguese surgeon who took us round that in Portugal it is never the custom for women to nurse men, and that even the women are nursed by nuns; they therefore have no standard of nursing and would, I think, be unable to realise the position of a British trained nurse. Their excuse for asking for our Sisters is that they wish their hospital to be run on English lines and they do not consider their male orderlies capable of the theatre work. This is quite a different thing from our Sisters having worked in Indian Hospitals, as the Medical Officers there were English. Here they are all Portuguese speaking no English at all, and only some of them speaking French. The Sisters chosen would therefore have to be able to speak French fluently. I think this question should be put up officially to the War Office and that if Sisters are to be allowed to work in Portuguese CCS, it should be on their authority.
From there we went to 51 CCS where I saw the Sister in charge, Miss McCormick, QAIMNS, and the CO Colonel Lindsay. This hospital is situated in a convent, and was not busy at the time of the visit. Everything was working very smoothly. There was one Sister here not very suitable for CCS work and she will be moved. We had tea in the Mess, which seemed most comfortable and well managed.
Then I went to 54 CCS going over it with the Sister in charge, Miss G. M. Jones, QAIMNS. They were not very busy at the time and everything was in excellent order. There is an Officers’ section at this hospital; the wards looked very bright and attractive. I also inspected the Sisters’ Mess which is in a French billet close by, and their quarters being also in the same house. Returned to 12 Stationary Hospital for the night, and had an excellent dinner in the Sisters’ Mess.
Next morning I inspected the hospital, the main building of which is given up to surgical cases and the Operating Theatre. The wards all looked beautiful and the patients very well cared for. There is also a large Isolation Section under canvas, all in excellent order. The Sisters are accommodated in huts which looked very comfortable.
Went on to Aubigny to 30 CCS which is just moving to a new site. Saw Miss F. Barwell, QAIMNSR, the Sister in charge. The 3 newest joined of her staff were being transferred to 42 CCS, Miss Barwell and the remainder were ordered to proceed to the Nurses’ Home, Abbeville, where leave would be arranged for those who were due.
Went across to 42 CCS which is a hutted hospital. The Sister in charge, Miss Ram, QAIMNS, had been evacuated sick to the Base, and her duties were being performed temporarily by Miss Patullo, QAIMNS. This lady did not wish to work under a senior TFNS Sister, so she has received orders to join No.12 Stationary Hospital, and Sister Sloan, TFNS from that unit will take over charge of 42 CCS. The officers are no longer accommodated in the convent on the hill; the Sisters’ quarters are therefore now there and an ambulance takes them to and fro. There is an excellent operating theatre in this unit and everything appeared well managed.
Then to 6 CCS at Barlin, where I saw the Sister in charge, Miss Raine, TFNS. Part of this unit is accommodated in a French school, which may be once more wanted, thus necessitating the move of the hospital. There is an Officers’ section here – the staff was 20 but as the work is not heavy just now, it will be reduced to 10. 3 of the staff have been there more than 6 months, but as the unit may be changing, no one will be moved for the present. The Sisters are accommodated in a small cottage close at hand.
From there we went to 22 CCS where I saw the Sister in charge, Miss Plimsaul, QAIMNS, and the CO Colonel Goodwin. There I also met Colonel Wallace, the Consultant Surgeon to the 1st Army, with whom I discussed the question of Teams and the necessity that nurses should not stay longer than 6 months in any Clearing Station where the work was heavy. I also told him that it was not desirable that nurses should be permitted to ask inspecting officers whether they need comply with orders, and I suggested trying to give every Clearing Station 6 efficient Theatre Sisters.
Had lunch in the Sisters’ Mess, all most comfortable. This is a hutted hospital with a most up-to-date Operating Theatre – electrically heated tables There is also an officers’ section which was in excellent order. The Sisters are comfortably accommodated in huts. Two of the staff are unsuitable for the work and will therefore be moved shortly.
After lunch I went to 23 CCS where I went round the hospital with the Sister in charge, Miss Whyte, QAIMNS. This is a hutted hospital in beautiful grounds – not very heavy at the time of the visit. They have a most excellent theatre, with a mobile section which could be all packed in 20 minutes when the unit moves, and 30 minutes after arrival at the new site would be unpacked and ready for an operation. There is an officers’ section here also, which looked most comfortable. There is a large open-air ward for gas cases, of which there were 5 who were getting on very well. Several of the staff had been here some time and must be moved. In any case the unit may be moving soon. The Sisters are accommodated in a beautiful chateau in the grounds, and are most comfortable.
Then to 18 CCS where the Sister in charge, Miss Meeke, QAIMNSR, was on leave, and her duties were being performed by A/Sister Maling, QAIMNSR. I went round the hospital with her and the CO Colonel Storrs. It is all under canvas and looked in excellent order. Here there is also an Officers’ Section. The hospital was not heavy at the time of the visit. Had tea with the Sisters in their duty tent, their quarters being in French billets close by. Three of the staff here are unsuitable for the work and will be moved. Sisters Meeke and Maling have also been here a long time and must have a change. They will be replaced by Theatre Sisters.
Went on to Bethune, to 33 CCS, where I went round the unit, which is in a building, with the Sister in charge, Miss Foley, QAIMNS. Owing to the constant shelling of this place the number of patients is now reduced to 60, all very acute cases, and which therefore necessitate a very excellent surgical staff. The unit was in splendid order and the patients appeared to be excellently nursed. The Sisters are accommodated in what was once the Officers’ Hospital when the number of patients was greater. I inspected their Mess, which appeared most comfortable, and saw the CO just before leaving.
Next went to 7 CCS where I found the Sister in charge, Miss Bannister, QAIMNSR, on leave, and also the CO. They had been shelled two nights before but none of the staff had been hurt. Several civilians had been admitted including two women, who had since died. Miss Abraham, QAIMNSR was taking over Miss Bannister’s duties in her absence. They were exceedingly light, but here also the number of patients had been limited to 60 on account of the repeated shelling and bombardment. This hospital is accommodated in a school, and the Sisters’ quarters are in a house next door and appeared most comfortable. This unit had supplied two surgical teams to other units and were then left exceedingly short-handed as they themselves became busy. A Base team was then received from Havre, and this team has now become superfluous owing to the lightness of the work. Returned to Headquarters, Abbeville, in the evening.
Left Abbeville at 3 p.m. and proceeded to Rouen, where I visited the Sick Sisters’ Hospital, an Annexe of 8 General Hospital.
Accommodation: 40 beds for nursing staff, 50 beds for WAAC.
A/Matron: Miss A. B. Denton, QAIMNSR. Staff: 8 Trained, 9 VADs (3 working in kitchen).
Servants: 6 French women servants, 2 orderlies.
In the grounds there are 3 detached huts, one in front for nursing Sisters and 2 behind for WAAC members. There is accommodation for 8 of the nursing staff in the building, and at present there are 4 more in bell tents. The remainder are living with 8 General Hospital Mess. When the weather gets colder the 4 now in tents will have to go to 8 General Hospital quarters. The hospital is well furnished, well arranged and there is every convenience – electric light, baths with hot and cold water, etc. The nurses look well cared for and the appointments seem nice – a great many useful and pretty things have been supplied by the BRCS. The unit has grown considerably since Miss Denton was first appointed A/Matron; there was then only the building with accommodation for 17 patients, and I think the work is rather more than she can manage and when I can find a thoroughly suitable Matron I propose to make a change. Up to the present the staff has constantly been changed with the staff of 8 General Hospital as the Matron thinks fit, but this arrangement does not seem to be a good one, and I am proposing to appoint a regular staff of 19, and also to move some of the present staff who do not appear to be quite suitable. This staff will then be permanent, so that if any changes are desirable they will have to be made in the same way as in other units. I saw the Assistant Matron of 8 General Hospital, Miss Townend, QAIMNS, as the A/Matron, Miss Roscoe, was on leave.
Reported at the DDMS office and spent the night at the new Hostel for Nurses, where Miss M. Barwell, QAIMNSR is A/Matron. Three of the Sisters from No.7 Ambulance Train were accommodated there whilst their train was under repairs.
Reported at the DDMS office and saw Colonel Russell. He went into the question of extra accommodation which is required at 5, 6, 8, 10 and 12 General Hospitals and at 11 and 25 Stationary Hospitals. In the General Hospitals the difficulty is that the Messes are not nearly big enough for the increased staffs – in 11 Stationary Hospital it is a question of increased accommodation and of getting authority to utilise 2 of the Nissen huts built for WAAC and not yet occupied. He said that if this was put up and authorised by the L of C, the Engineers were quite willing to put up the additional quarters without delay.
I discussed with him the advisability of establishing the Principal Matron’s Office in the new Nurses’ Home, as it was originally intended, to which he agreed, and I asked that a notice might be put up so that it could be seen that it was the Principal Matron’s office and the Nurses’ Home, and that all work in connection with the nursing staff should be dealt with there instead of in his office. I spoke to him about the question of Coal Supply for the Nurses’ Hostel as well as for all the hospitals in the area. This matter is under consideration, as the general impression seems to be that the nurses will be asked to pay, and as they are not now drawing Fuel and Light allowance, this is out of the question.
Went to No.10 General Hospital
Accommodation: 1295 beds (including a division for German prisoners).
OC: Lt. Colonel Scott. Matron: Miss Scudamore Smith, QAIMNS. Assistant Matron: Miss Rentzsch, QAIMNS. Home Sister: Miss Taylor, QAIMNS Ret.
Staff: 50 Trained 50 VADs. Accommodation for staff: 97 in huts.
The hospital was very light, only 650 patients in at the time of the visit. Since my last visit there has been additional accommodation put up consisting of Forrest huts. The arrangements, both in the Mess and in the bed-rooms are exceedingly good and the floors are all stained. The kitchen has also been very much improved and enlarged. 5 women servants (French) and 6 batmen are employed. The whole arrangements are very good except that the Mess is not large enough nor the ante-room. The appointments in the Mess are very nice and the only thing that wants altering is the lace of table cloths, as American cloth is at present used. This will be seen to as the Mess funds meet all requirements and they have a good balance. I saw the OC and he expressed himself entirely satisfied with the Matron and the arrangements she was making.
Went to No.5 General Hospital
Accommodation: 1390 beds (including a special division for eye cases).
OC: Colonel D. F. Lawson. Matron and A/Principal Matron of area: Miss A. A. Wilson, QAIMNS.
Assistant Matron: Miss C. V. S. Johnson, QAIMNS. Home Sister: Miss Earp, VAD with Miss Ellis, VAD assisting in the kitchen, as the cook was away.
Staff: 50 Trained 47 VADs. Accommodation for staff: 100 in huts. Servants: 1 French woman, and 5 batmen.
Here too the accommodation had been expanded with Forrest huts, and the bicycle house has been converted into a new sitting room as the present one is not large enough for the increased staff. It will be very nice when finished – the floor is stained and the furniture is nice. Here the Mess was very good with the exception of the lack of table-cloths. The menu seems good but I pointed out that there should be either tea or coffee served after every meal and the habit of having tea in the wards was to be discontinued. We went round the wards with the Matron and the OC and saw the fracture wards with Sinclair splints, and also the operating theatre. Everything is well arranged and the patients appear exceedingly well cared for. The dinners were being served and were being taken round in a tempting manner. I also saw the new bath house where there are to be six baths with hot and cold water. The Matron said she had no difficulties and everything was working smoothly.
Went to 6 General Hospital just in time for lunch.
Accommodation: 1700 beds. OC: Lt. Colonel Begbie. Matron: Miss Lyde, QAIMNS.
Assistant Matron: Miss Nye, QAIMNS. Home Sister: Miss Fox, QAIMNSR.
Staff: 64 Trained 51 Untrained. Accommodation for staff: 116 in huts. Servants: 2 French women servants, 6 batmen.
Had lunch in the Sisters’ Mess. I really visited this unit with a view to seeing how the nursing staff were fed and accommodated, as certain complaints had been made. We had stew, potatoes and vegetable marrow, ground rice pudding and jam, cheese, butter, and wine and water to drink. There was no tea or coffee afterwards. There was American cloth on the tables. The meal was well cooked and well served and there seemed to be plenty of everything. The Home Sister served at a side table and there were VADs and two batmen waiting. Everyone looked extremely well and there was quite a pleasant feeling in the Mess, everyone chatting and appearing quite at home. After lunch I saw all the VADs together as a complaint had been made with regard to the housing of the VADs. I told them exactly what I had come about – all told me that they had no complaint of any kind to make – they were very happy and had plenty to eat – they could always have a second helping if they wished. I also spoke about the Efficiency Stripe and made them thoroughly understand that the Red Stripe was only given for consecutive service and for efficient work performed. I also impressed upon them that they were not to keep wine or spirits in their rooms as they always had wine at table. I told them that in all difficulties they should consult their Matron or send me a letter through her if they preferred. They were always at liberty to write to Mrs. Furse, but they must realise that when once they belonged to the Army they were part of the military organisation and we were responsible for them to their parents.
I saw the Matron afterwards and told her what I had said and asked her to make arrangements to have proper table-cloths and table-napkins provided and to have tea or coffee after both lunch and dinner, and impressed upon her that the habit of taking tea in the wards must be discontinued. I went round the quarters with her. Here as in other units the need for a larger ante-room is felt. Visited the wards and the operating theatre – everything was in first-class order – there were a great many heavy cases, fractures, head cases and gas cases. The Matron said that the Mess funds were ample to meet all expenses and the only difficulty was in shopping and getting supplies up. I interviewed Miss Bracewell, QAIMNSR, the nurse who had written to a German prisoner and whose letter had been intercepted by the CO. She said she had been nursing him at a CCS and the man had said he would like to write to her as he had received so many kindnesses. I told her what a serious matter it was communicating with the enemy and that her correspondence would be dealt with officially.
Went to 25 Stationary Hospital (Isolation Hospital).
Accommodation: 1040 (including Officers and Nursing Sisters).
OC: Colonel McCarthy. Matron: Miss Northover, TFNS (under orders for the Mediterranean).
Assistant Matron: Miss L. Hill, TFNS. Staff: 39 Trained and 32 Untrained.
Accommodation for staff: 68 in huts.
The hospital was very empty and there were only 3 sick Sisters. I saw the CO and asked him to let me know if there was anything which was not as he liked in the nursing arrangements. I said that the new Matron, Miss C. W. Jones, QAIMNS, who was arriving was very capable and, I think, suitable in every way. The present Assistant Matron who had just arrived he was anxious not to keep.
Next I visited 9 General Hospital, which is now an American unit (No.4 Lakeside, USA).
Accommodation: 1250 beds. OC: Colonel Gilchrist. Matron: Miss Allison. Assistant Matron: Miss Leets.
Staff: 86 Trained. Accommodation for staff: 100 in huts. Servants: 4 French women servants who are accommodated in the unit.
I saw the Matron, Miss Allison, who asked me a great many questions about the organisation of our hospitals and regulations for the nursing staffs, and was very anxious to know if it was the custom in British units to dance. I explained that it was against the regulations and both she and the CO emphasised the fact that they were most anxious to fall in with the British in all respects. They have here a French cook and 4 French servants who are accommodated in the unit. This has not been done before in any of our units, and I reported the matter to the DDMS for his approval. I told him that it was definitely laid down that in camp hospitals if women were employed, they are only to attend by the day. The present arrangements here are that the woman cook lives in the room in the kitchen built for the RAMC cook and one of the huts is set apart for the other women servants.
In consequence of having to go into many matters with the Matron and CO time did not permit of visiting the wards. They seem very favourably impressed with both the hospital organisation and the arrangements for accommodation made by the British. I discussed with the Matron the question of team Sisters. She said that one of her team Sisters had come down from the Front looking very tired and in future she would be very glad if I would do as I do with our own people and arrange for an exchange to be made after a certain time. The CO told me that the Assistant Matron was being detached for a time to work with the Belgians for Child Welfare as she was specially trained for that work. He did not seem to understand that this arrangement could not be made without the sanction of the British Medical authorities and said the arrangement had been made direct with the American Headquarters in London. I explained that no member of the BEF could be transferred to work elsewhere without the sanction of the Adjutant General. I reported this matter to the DDMS who said that the matter must be put up officially and approved, before authority could be given for the lady to proceed. The staff of this hospital includes 2 anaesthetists and a dietician.
Then I went to 11 Stationary Hospital.
Accommodation: 1040 beds. OC: Lt. Colonel Jamieson. Matron: Miss Allen, QAIMNS.
Assistant Matron: Miss Jolly, QAIMNSR. Staff: 29 Trained, 36 VADs. Accommodation for staff: 52 in huts. (Additional accommodation for 8 required, and could be had by utilising 2 empty Nissen huts, built for WAAC, if authority can be obtained).
I went round the hospital with the Matron and CO and saw a number of seriously wounded men in splints, both Sinclair and amplifications of Sinclair. All the patients said how very comfortable these were and the nurses said this system made the work much lighter. Had tea in the Matron’s sitting-room and afterwards went round the quarters, which are extremely nice and tastefully furnished, and reflect great credit on the Matron.
Went to 3 Stationary Hospital.
Accommodation: 600 beds. OC: Lt. Colonel Hull. Matron: Miss Mowat, QAIMNS. Home Sister: Miss Gilhooley, VAD. Staff: 28 Trained 24 VAD. Accommodation for staff in building.
The quarters of the nursing staff are very much improved, and there are additional bedrooms, a bathroom and an extra sitting-room. I went through the whole of the quarters and found them well managed and very orderly. The new sitting-room is a great acquisition and very pretty. Here they have plenty of Mess funds and are apparently well fed, but damask table-cloths are needed. Went round the hospital and over the new compound which is now established as a proper annexe of the hospital, it being situated just over the road from the building. It has a first-class dressing tent and a small kitchen apart, and the gardens are very well kept.
Went to the DDMS office and told him where I had been and that next day I proposed to finish the hospitals before returning to Abbeville.
Went to the new Nurses’ Club which has been established since the beginning of December in a fine big flat on the second storey of a house in the Rue Thiers. Miss Walters is in charge. The number of members has grown considerably and they have had to extend the tea-room into the room adjoining, but they have as well 3 other sitting-rooms, so that it is quite easy to manage. The rooms are tastefully furnished with pretty and artistic pictures. I noticed here that besides the ordinary tea, you can get lunch, ices or fruit, on extra payment. One of the VADs can cook and makes all the cakes and they also have a French servant. There were all the English papers, illustrated papers and nursing magazines in the reading room, and also a notice board with various notices, amongst them being one that Sisters from train might arrange to send their laundry and the Club ladies would arrange for them to get it done and let them have it back. This is a very thoughtful thing to do and will be a great boon to the train Sisters. The BRCS have been extremely kind in this respect, helping all our workers, both at Abbeville, Boulogne, Calais and Rouen. I impressed upon the lady in charge that if ever she were in need of assistance she had only to write to Miss Wilson, the A/Principal Matron, who would be very pleased to help her.
Went to 12 General Hospital, an American unit (Chicago USA unit).
Accommodation: 1400 beds. OC: Lt. Colonel Davis. Matron: Miss Stimson. Assistant Matron: Miss Taylor.
Staff: 69 Trained (Americans) 35 VADs (British). Accommodation for staff: 96 in huts, remainder in bell tents, but new huts are in procession of erection.
Servants: 6 French women servants employed.
I saw the Matron and with her visited the Mess and quarters, which like all others are not big enough for the present staff. We discussed many questions relative to military hospitals and also the question of dancing. Here they still have 35 VADs, some of whom are excellent but many are inclined to be frivolous. The Matron impressed me as being an extremely clever and capable woman, with a thorough knowledge of a Matron’s duties. She seemed very anxious to get into touch with the British members of the staff. The Mess was well arranged and everything clean and orderly. She finds the Mess funds ample and has already purchased damask table-cloths. At the time of the visit the table was laid for lunch and everything seemed excellent, the appointments being very nice. The Mess hut is not big enough and they have been obliged to utilise the end originally used as an ante-room. The Matron emphasised the fact that the one thought of both the medical and nursing staffs was that they had come over to do the most they could for the men. She, like the Matron of 9 General Hospital, spoke of how impressed they all were with the pluck and behaviour of the British patients. Here I saw what is called a Diet Kitchen. One of the huts has been unofficially utilised for this purpose and here many dainties are cooked and the Sisters send from the wards for delicacies for their patients who are most ill. It reminded me very much of the room at Wynberg where the “Jelly Ladies” made similar dainties. The ingredients for making these things are partly drawn from the wards, partly given by the BRCS and partly from donations given by members of the nursing staff. It seems to be a most admirable arrangement and would be a great addition in all units, both on the L of C and in CCS.
Had lunch with Mrs. Clipperton and Colonel Russell.
After lunch went to No.8 General Hospital.
Accommodation: 820 patients (including 200 officers, a mental division and a German prisoner division).
OC: Colonel Butler. Matron: Miss Roscoe, QAIMNS. Assistant Matron: Miss Townend, QAIMNSR. Home Sister: Miss Wells, QAIMNSR. Staff: 51 Trained 56 Untrained. Accommodation for Staff: 108 in huts. Servants: 1 French woman, 5 batmen.
Saw the CO who told me that the Matron was very much more helpful that she had been, and the Assistant Matron was excellent. As usual, he had many complaints to make with regard to nurses having been taken away and the indifferent people he had, although, as I pointed out to him, he had several most excellent members of the staff, including 4 QAIMNS. He had not much time to talk as he was about to operate some very urgent case. Went round the Officers’ wards with the Assistant Matron – they appeared to be very full with a great many very seriously wounded men. We then went to the quarters where we had tea and went round the huts. Here as everywhere the question of enlarging the Mess and ante-room is under consideration. The kitchen also in this unit is not nearly large enough for the amount of work which has to be done. The quarters look well run and the rooms I visited were very neat and there was an air of great interest and comfort. It was their at-home day and tea was laid, with nice cakes and sandwiches. Like all the other units, this Mess was without proper table-cloths and only had a few table-napkins. They have ample funds and I instructed them to provide both cloths and napkins in sufficient quantity. The accommodation for the nursing staff is good. The Assistant Matron said that there were one or two members of the staff who were of a quarrelsome disposition and it would be an advantage if they could be moved elsewhere. Left at 4.30 p.m. and arrived at Abbeville at 7.30 p.m.
Abbeville to Calais
Left Abbeville at 2.15 p.m., reaching Calais soon after 5 o’clock. Went to 35 General Hospital and saw the Matron, Miss L. E. Mackay. The OC Colonel Pinches was on leave. I was accompanied by Miss Wright VAD, a member of my Office Staff. I went with the object of getting particulars with reference to VAD Latham, who had not been allowed to renew her contract in December last and who has been making complaints ever since. A communication had come from the War Office asking three questions:-
1. Whether she had asked to see the Matron-in-Chief.
2. Whether an interview had been promised her.
3. What arrangements had been made for this interview, if promised.
I got the necessary information which will be forwarded to GHQ without delay.
Assistant Principal Matron: Miss L. E. Mackay has recently been made Assistant Principal Matron at Calais, and I arranged that she was to visit all Units in the Area each week, including Ships, Barges and Trains. She should inform the ADMS and the Matron in Chief of anything she felt wanted attention. I asked her to see the Nursing Staff from time to time and also the VAD members, pointing out to the latter that if they were in any difficulties or troubles to apply to the Matron, Principal Matron or Matron in Chief. I asked her to talk to those who were thinking of taking up Nursing as a profession without delay, so as to ascertain what Civil Hospitals would do for them in consideration of work they had done in Military Hospitals.
Isolation Hospital: The new Isolation Hospital recently opened as part of 30 General Hospital seems to be going very well, except that the Matron of 30 General does not seem to get on very well with the Matron of the Isolation Hospital, and the Principal Matron was anxious that she might be responsible for the Nursing arrangements in that hospital only. I visited the ADMS and asked him that arrangements could be made in this respect, and he has undertaken to let me know later.
Sisters suitable for CCS: Before leaving 35 General Hospital the Matron gave me the names of a certain number of her Staff who are suitable for Casualty Clearing Stations, but if any are moved now she would be glad of some to replace them, as lately a good many of her best nurses have been taken for surgical Teams at the Front.
Mr. Warre: Sent a telephonic Message from Calais to Boulogne to Mr. Warre, just over from England, and is anxious to see me with reference to making arrangements for the Nursing Service to have the use of his Villa this Winter at Cabbe Roquebrune. He is also anxious to get a new Lady Superintendent, and would if possible like to have one of our Trained Nurses who is tired and needing rest.
We left Calais at 7, arriving about 8 o’clock at St. Omer, staying the night at the Nursing Sisters’ quarters.
ADMS St. Omer Visited the ADMS St. Omer and talked to him in connection with the Messing Arrangements in all hospitals, saying he had heard of complaints made by VAD members of the messing arrangements and the large fees they had to pay, and saying would it not be a good idea to have a committee of Medical Officers to look into the matter. I said the VADs had only to pay 20/- a week in respect of Messing, which was what was allowed by the Government. Instead of paying 3/6 a week in respect of washing, the Matron allowed them 4/-, which was 6d extra. They were not called upon to pay anything away to Mess expenses out of the remainder of any allowances they might be granted; that according to the QAIMNS regulations the Matron was responsible for keeping the Mess accounts, and they were to be seen and looked into whenever the Matron in Chief made her inspections. Now that Principal Matrons were appointed to every Area I would draw up further regulations in this matter.
58 General Hospital: We went to 58 General Hospital, purely to look into the messing arrangements and the comfort of the Nursing Staff generally, and saw the Matron, Miss Humphries, and the Home Sister. Since my last visit the Mess Hut and Ante Room with kitchen attached has been completed, and everything is being managed in an excellent manner. The table appointments are very good, including the table linen. In the Compound they were busy building Huts, so that the Staff could be accommodated in them when the weather becomes cold. I saw many members of the Nursing Staff, trained and untrained, and everything appeared very satisfactory in every respect. They have no difficulty in shopping or obtaining supplies, their one and only difficulty being the question of personal washing of the Nursing Staff, and the Matron asked me if it would be possible to make arrangements with a Laundry to take their personal washing, at so much a head.
59 General Hospital: We went to General Petain’s House, where part of the Staff of 59 General Hospital is accommodated. The Matron lives in the entrance of the hospital, by her little office. Nine of the Senior Sisters are accommodated in a house in the hospital grounds, 26 are needed at Moulle, an annexe 5 miles out of St. Omer where Officers and men suffering from shell shock have up to the present been nursed. The remaining 68 are crammed into General Petain’s house, a fine solid building with a good Mess room and two good sitting rooms. When once in order the kitchen and servant’s apartments will be very good. Only the sitting rooms and kitchen are lighted with gas. In the garden a hut, intended for 20 Sisters, has been put up. This is eventually to be partitioned off and to have the usual bath and lavatory accommodation installed. At present, before being completed, 10 VADs are housed in the shell, with no washing water or lighting arrangements. The house is composed of a great many good sized rooms, which at the time of the visit, when I was taken round by the Matron, Miss Whiffin, were crammed with members of the Nursing Staff. The rooms were so full that it was impossible to get in all the trunks. There seemed to be no attempt made by anyone to arrange or make anything in the least bit comfortable or habitable. When I spoke to the Matron on the subject she said that she thought that was the way she was expected to live in France, but afterwards admitted she had been offered a house at a small distance which had electric light and water, but she had refused it, as she preferred to have all her staff together.
In one of these crowded rooms I found a Nurse in a camp bed. It was then lunch time and she had been sick since the night before, but had not yet been seen. I pointed out to Miss Whiffin that all members of the Nursing Staff who were sick should be sent to 10 Stationary Hospital without delay, and she would find it more satisfactory in every respect if she took up her residence in her own Sisters’ quarters.
She appeared to have a willing and energetic Home Sister who was being assisted by 2 VAD members, but the need of a head to direct matters was evident. The following difficulties existed:
1. The Quarter Master refused to give any member of the Nursing Staff more than one blanket, and this he only gave as a favour.
2. No candles or means of lighting of any kind were supplied to the Nursing Staff and they were buying their own coal.
All these matters I wrote about rather fully to Colonel Shine, in a semi-official letter.
10 Stationary Hospital: Went to 10 Stationary Hospital where I saw Miss Tunley, (Matron of 10 Stationary) who had been suffering from a temperature and severe headache for four days. So far she was undiagnosed. She was in a nice room to herself, and was being well looked after. She was rather worried as to her condition, and I arranged that I would send somebody to do her duties with as little delay as possible, so that she need not worry about things.
Had lunch at 10 Stationary, and after lunch went with Miss Whiffin to see the annexe of 59 General Hospital where 150 patients can be accommodated. It is a well built and commodious house which would have made infinitely better quarters for the Nursing Staff than their present one. It has several good big wards and kitchens and a certain number of big rooms which are going to be given to the Medical Officers who at present have to be billeted out.
Hospital for Shell Shock: We then drove to the Officers’ and men’s Hospital for Shell Shock which is about 5 miles out of St. Omer. It is now under consideration to move the shell shock cases to the Second Army, and the question is now raised as to whether to retain this Chateau and its expansions as a hospital or make use of it as a Rest Home for Nurses. It is too far out to really be of any use for that purpose, and as a large sum of money has been spent on building and reconstructing part of the Chateau and erecting huts for hospital purposes it seems a thousand pities if it is not still left and used for the purpose it was originally taken.
7 General Hospital: We went to 7 General Hospital where we had tea, and where I saw the Commanding Officer and the new Matron, Miss Howe. Here there are still 40 nurses under canvas, and the OC suggested that the officers who are now accommodated in one of the expansions should be transferred to Moulle and in these huts the overflow of the nurses should be accommodated until these buildings are required for the WAAC general service people. I undertook to embody these suggestions when writing to Colonel Shine on the various matters which needed consideration in the hospitals I had already visited.
DDMS Boulogne: Then we proceeded to Boulogne, arriving about 7 o’clock. Reported at the DDMS Office, when the DDMS spoke to me about Mrs. Robertson Eustace and the new Club which was about to be opened, and in compliance with his wish I arranged to call upon Mrs. Eustace.
8 Stationary Hospital: The OC was on leave. I saw the Matron, Miss Kaberry, and inspected the Mess books, finding everything in order. I went round the Quarters, and found that still 30 of the Nursing Staff are in billets in the village until the hutted extension is completed. They are brought backwards and forwards to the hospital by ambulance, and in each building the Matron has put a senior Sister in charge. The Mess and everything very much improved, and it all seemed exceedingly well managed.
Almeric Paget Masseuses: I went through some of the fracture wards, and met for the first time some of the Almeric Paget Masseuses, who are doing excellent work and are thoroughly happy and contented with their lot. They asked if it could be arranged for them to have a half day in the week and a whole day on Sundays, as they have at home.
Mental Division: Then I went to the Mental Division. It is supposed to be equipped for 64 beds. At the time of the visit there were 77 patients, and there have been as many as 101 in. When there are over 64 patients, beds have to be made up on the floor for the extra cases. The patients are kept in from a few days to as much as five months, and there is always a long delay with prisoners. Their Staff is a Sister in Charge and one Staff Nurse on day, and one Sister on night duty, with a Corporal and five orderlies on day and five on night. There is a Medical Officer in charge. The Division is beautifully managed, and the place if full of lovely flowers, fern boxes, and birds. Miss Macaulay, the Sister in Charge, is undecided whether to stay on or whether to return to her civil employment, partly because she does not wish to do night duty, and partly because she thinks that as she has charge of such a very important division she ought not to be inspected by the Matron or the Officer in Command.
55 General Hospital: We went to 55 General Hospital where we had lunch in the Mess, which was a marquee, very comfortable and well arranged. The Staff were beginning to get into their huts and the Mess and Ante Room were expected to be completed in a day or two. I saw Miss Macdonald, the Matron, privately, and told her of the complaints I had had in connection with her Nursing Staff from Mrs. Furse, which had been made by certain members of her staff in connection with the work and the unit. I said that Mrs. Furse had written to me on the subject, saying that this Unit had never been a happy one in Cambridge, and now they had come to France the discontent appeared still to exist. She appeared to be absolutely astonished at the rumour, and assured me that there was no truth or foundation for these reports. I saw her books and all her records which were well kept. After lunch I went into a few of the Wards and then interviewed VAD members Doggett and McQuaid, who had been making complaints about the work and management of the hospital and various other grievances to Mrs. Furse, instead of applying to their own Matron on the subject. They appeared to be very penitent and apologised for their want of loyalty, and promised to begin to work in a better spirit in the future.
53 General Hospital: Then we went to 53 General Hospital, where I saw the OC Col. Callendar, and the Matron, Miss Riddle. I went round the Quarters and a good deal of the Hospital. Everything appeared to be admirably arranged and managed. There was a feeling everywhere that the Staff were thoroughly happy and contented, and that the very best was being done both for the Staff and the Nursing Service. The Mess and the huts for the Sisters were well arranged and exceedingly comfortable, and the Matron had two first rate Red Cross Stores, and very nice sitting and bedrooms. Those of the Staff who were in bell tents were looking equally comfortable, and all the rooms were tastefully arranged and beautifully neat.
Uniform: The Matron here, like the one at 55 General Hospital, is very anxious to know whether it is possible to get authority for the Nursing Staff in these very exposed and windy places to wear tight-fitting caps, somewhat similar to those worn by VAD members, and strong Macintoshes.
57 General Hospital: Lt. Col. Westmacott in Charge, but I did not see him. The Matron, Miss Oates, has been away for six weeks with a fractured clavicle. I saw the Assistant Matron, Miss Crooks, who is no doubt having a very trying time. All the buildings all over the hospital seem to be in process of erection, and none completed. Their Sisters’ huts were partly built, and some of the Staff were struggling to get into them. The remainder were crammed into marquees scattered about in a most promiscuous manner among the Wards. There seemed to be no order or method in it, and I am sure the Assistant Matron was confronted with innumerable difficulties. The Mess, in a Marquee, seemed to be very comfortable, and I should think they have an admirable Home Sister. I found that Miss Crooks had not appointed any member of the Staff to assist her as Assistant Matron during the Matron’s absence, and I advised her to appoint Miss Monk temporarily, until Miss Oates’ return. She was rather worried about a member of her staff who, she was informed by the Sergeant Major, was going about with the other Sergeant Major of the Hospital. She had interviewed the Nurse who absolutely denied the whole thing. I advised her to report the matter to the OC who would deal with it.
Mrs. Robertson Eustace: I had tea with Mrs. Robertson Eustace and settled all the unpleasant business in connection with her Club. She has, I think, got over her disappointment at another Club opening there, and has consented to my circulating to all hospitals in all area her new arrangements of a monthly subscription and payment for teas, as well as for those Sisters passing through who she is able to accommodate for the night.
Went to the DDMS’ Office, and from there to the Headquarters of the BRCS where I saw the Commissioner, Sir Arthur Lawley, who has just returned and taken up his duties after along absence. I discussed with him the question of Decorations and Mentions for the BRCS and undertook to let him have the list to be submitted before they were finally forwarded to GHQ.
I saw the Medical Assessor, Sir Edward Stewart, in connection with Etretat, where the numbers of patients have not been so large as usual. He also spoke to me on the subject of permits being given to members of the Nursing Service who had Special Leave, as he had been informed that these were given by the DDMS at Etaples without any reference to the Matron of the Unit, which naturally undermined all discipline.
14 General Hospital: We then went to 14 General Hospital, where I saw the Assistant Matron, Miss Branson, who is under orders to proceed to No.7 Casualty Clearing Station as Sister in Charge. We went on to the Chateau Mauricien, where I saw the Matron, Miss Fox, and the Matron of the Unit, Miss Esdon. I went round the Hospital and its various buildings and everything, as usual, was in excellent order and all the patients very comfortable. I saw Miss Keene QAIMNS who is suffering from cystitis, and Miss Watkins QAIMNS who has a floating kidney. Both of them will have to go home on Sick Leave.
Lunch: We went to the Louvre Hotel for lunch, where I had invited the Principal Matron and Miss Lowe, Principal Controller of the WAAC in the Boulogne Area. The two VADs from the Principal Matron’s Office had lunch with Miss Wright. After lunch we left for Headquarters, arriving home for tea.
Visited GHQ to see the DGMS with reference to the recent incident where 2 VADs from 20 General Hospital had been reported on for being absent without leave from dinner and for not coming in until 10 o’clock, they having attended a dance at the Machine Gun Officers’ Training School. When the report was sent to DGMS, he thought that I had dealt with them in rather a severe manner – but when I had seen him and explained that these ladies thoroughly understood that it was against the regulations, that they had not asked the Matron’s permission as they knew she would not give it, and that they had absented themselves from dinner also without permission, he realised that it was a matter which could not be passed over lightly. I told him that I had given them the opportunity of either transferring to Home Establishment or resigning. One had asked to resign and the other to be transferred.
Visited 2 Stationary Hospital – OC Lt. Colonel Meadows; A/Matron – Miss Nunn, QAIMNS. At the time of the visit the hospital was extremely full of wounded officers, men and German prisoners and everyone was working at their very hardest. Went over the Mess and advised certain alterations to be made in connection with the arrangements for meals and pointed out the need of tea of coffee after both dinner and lunch and the necessity of having plenty of everything at each meal. The new Home Sister, Mrs. Whiffin, seems as if she was likely to prove a great success and was vastly interested in her work. I noted that they had only American cloth on the dinner tables and I asked the Matron to see that this should be altered and pointed out the necessity of the Matron, Assistant Matron or Home Sister being present at all meals, so that everyone was satisfied that the nursing staff were getting every care and attention. The gardens and grass plots round the wards all look perfectly beautiful, and are nicely kept.
Then I went to the South African General Hospital. Went round the hospital with the OC Colonel Ward and the Matron, Mrs. Creagh, SAMNS. This unit has increased tremendously in size – they have a good many Adrian huts as well as special wards attached to the Operating Theatre. Everything is in excellent order. The South African nurses seem to be thoroughly well trained and have a good professional manner. I noticed that the annexes and bunks are well kept, clean and orderly. The Sisters’ quarters are similar to those at 2 Stationary Hospital. Their present Mess has not been found large enough so the division has been taken down between it and the sitting-room and a large new sitting-room is in process of completion. This will make the accommodation here quite excellent and the whole staff much appreciate their present accommodation after many months spent in billets in the town, coming backwards and forwards in all weathers.
Went to Dieppe, to No.5 Stationary Hospital – OC Lt. Colonel Hole – A/Matron Miss Boissier, AANS who was out. I was taken round the hospital by the Head Sister, Miss Fleming. This hospital is entirely hutted and apparently the work is expected to be considerably increased, as 3 large Adrian huts are in process of erection, which will increase their accommodation by 126 beds. Everything was orderly and appeared to be well managed. The nursing staff are now accommodated in a very charming villa situated in nice grounds quite close to the hospital. These quarters are a very great improvement on those which the British nurses had before the arrival of the Australian Sisters to take over the unit. They have two very nice women servants who have been with the Sisters ever since 5 Stationary Hospital opened and also 2 batmen.
Went to the Michelham Convalescent Home where I spent the night and where I had dinner with the Commandant and General Woodhouse. This hospital is composed of 2 large hotels capable of accommodating 250 officers. The nursing staff consists of the Matron (Miss Minns, QAIMNS), 2 trained nurses and 9 VAD members, one being a trained masseuse. The unit is closing at the end of the month and will be re-opening at Cap Martin in the same hotel as last year.
To Treport to 47 General Hospital – OC Colonel Hayes – A/Matron Miss Lang, QAIMNS – Assistant Matron Miss Forrest – Home Sister Miss Grayson, QAIMNS. The hospital is mainly under canvas with special surgical and medical huts and operating theatre. At the time of the visit it was extremely full of patients and they were busy taking in. The Matron informed me that her staff were working satisfactorily and happily and everything was going smoothly and she had little or no difficulties. The hutted accommodation for the nursing staff is nearing completion and they hope to be able to go into them in the course of a week or ten days. I inspected the messing accounts and went over their present quarters and Mess. The ante-room is pretty and tastefully furnished and the tables were laid for lunch – everything appeared to be first-rate in every respect. One or two tables I noticed had table-cloths but the rest had American cloth. This matter is receiving attention. The kitchens were clean and well managed and the store room well supplied with provisions.
Then to 3 General Hospital – OC Colonel Fairrie – Matron, Miss Willetts, QAIMNS, Assistant Matron, Miss Whittall – Home Sister, Miss Gregson, QAIMNSR. The hospital is established in a huge hotel with an expansion of 8 huts. It was very full at the time of the visit and did not give one the impression of being well managed. Everything was in rather a disorderly condition – there was no method in the arrangements – few cupboards and no special poison cupboards. The arrangements for sick officers were very poor – no list of equipment and apparently no regular inspections are made. The Matron informed me that constantly the sick officers had to drink out of cups as there were not sufficient tumblers. I went all round this department – there seemed to be no supervision of any kind; the Sister in charge had no list of equipment nor was there any method of dealing with breakages and having things replaced. In the sick officers’ Mess the table cloths were dirty as indeed were all the appointments; apparently both the laying of tables and trays was nobody’s responsibility. The same want of interest and method was apparent in the Sick Sisters’ department. I talked the matter over very plainly with the Matron and told her that this condition of things must not be allowed to continue, and she must have some regular form of inspection and her Assistant Matron should be delegated certain duties for which she was to be held entirely responsible.
Then I called upon the American Unit at 16 General Hospital (Philadelphia Unit) and saw the OC Colonel Delaney, Major Hart, and Matron Dunlop. Went round the hospital and was much impressed with the unit as a whole and the nursing staff, who impressed one with their capable ways and management. They are, I am sure, highly trained nurses in every respect and are an extremely nice stamp of woman. They are most anxious to do their very best and to fall in with the ways and customs of the British. I had tea in the Sisters’ quarters and went round their Mess. Everything was in the most excellent condition.
Visited 2 Canadian General Hospital: OC Colonel Rennie, Matron Miss Goodeve, CAMC.
Went round the hospital and the quarters. Here there is not sufficient hutted accommodation for the nursing staff who are in single bell tents. The compound is not fenced in and bell tents have been erected just in front of the cinema, which is highly undesirable in every way. The Matron informed me that one of the nurses was very frightened quite recently by finding that a man had put his hand under the tent and had taken hold of her hand. Since then a sentry has been placed but the Matron was most anxious that I should use my influence to hasten the hutted accommodation which has already been put in for. This is the only difficulty – the hospital is satisfactory in every respect and the nursing staff suitable and working well.
Then to Lady Murray’s Hospital for Officers only. At the time of the visit it was quite full, many of the officers being seriously wounded. I saw Lady Murray, who expressed her satisfaction both with her medical staff and her nurses and VADs who she says are thoroughly suitable in every respect. She has had nothing but kind letters from her officer patients after their return home. Returned to Dieppe for the night.
On my way back to Abbeville visited the ADMS office and told him the units which I had visited and the points which I had noted as needing attention:-
1. 3 General Hospital where there is a lack of systematic supervision from both the OC and Matron. He had only the day before inspected the hospital himself and was of my opinion.
2. The Matron of 3 General Hospital informed me that ever since she had been there she had had to pay for a ton of coal each month for cooking. As all the cooking for this hospital, both for patients, sick officers, sick Sisters, medical and nursing staff, is cooked in the same kitchen, it seems unreasonable that this payment should be asked for. I asked him if he would look into the matter, as I understand that in all units at Treport the nursing staff have to pay a certain amount for coal, and as no-one in France now draws Fuel and Light allowance, I asked that the matter should be dealt with officially.
3. I told him about the need for suitable accommodation for some of the Sisters at 2 Canadian General Hospital, and this he said would receive immediate attention.
Returned to Abbeville.
SUMMARY FOR SEPTEMBER 1917
No.34 CCS, on 10.9.17: Staff supplied – 11
No.2 CCS, 12.9.17: Staff supplied – 13
No.15 CCS, 19.9.17: Staff supplied – 7
No.34 Ambulance Train , on 25.9.17: Staff supplied – 3
Total – 34
No.3 and 4 Ambulance Flotillas, on 5.9.17: Staff released – 24
No.30 CCS, on 9.9.17: Staff released – 24
No.32 CCS, on 8.9.17: Staff released – 20
No.38 Ambulance Train , on 13.9.17: Staff released – 3
No.3 Australian CCS, on 22.8.17: Staff released – 25
No.24 CCS, on 5.9.17: Staff released – 8
No.39 CCS, on 5.9.17: Staff released – 10
No.1 Canadian CCS, on 5.9.17: Staff released – 17
Total – 115
Trained – 8
Untrained – 0
Sent Home Sick
Trained – 20
Untrained – 7
Returned from sick leave
Trained – 5
Untrained – 4
Total sick at present in England
Trained – 110
Untrained – 67
Resignations sent forward
Trained – 21
Transfers to Home Establishment
Trained – 5
Approximate No. of leaves granted – 560
VADs returned to England – 28
Resigned – 10
Termination of contract
Transferred to Home Establishment – [these figures obliterated by creasing of page]
Special Probationers returned to England
Resigned - 1
Transferred to Home Establishment – 1
Total – 2
Military Medal awarded to
Sister D. Laughton, TFNS of 57 CCS
S/Nurse E. J. Eckett, TFNS of 32 CCS
32 Casualty Clearing Station – 1-4 September: Both shelled and bombed – no casualties.
34 and 36 Casualty Clearing Stations – 4th September. Bombed. 3 orderlies killed – 2 died from injuries – no casualties amongst nursing staff.
24, 39 and 1 Canadian CCS – 5th September. Oosthoek area shelled. No casualties
St. Omer area – 4th, 5th and several succeeding nights. Aerial bombing by night – RFC officers killed – no casualties amongst the nursing staff.
Calais (35 General Hospital) – 5th – 6th September. Bombs dropped in the hospital – 3 Sisters and 2 VADs wounded.
Camiers area – 5th and 6th. Bombs dropped in 11 General Hospital. American Adjutant killed and several others injured.
Total Nursing staff now in BEF
Trained – 2553
Untrained – 1425
Shortage according to War Establishment
Trained – 234