Love letters and possessions from World War Two found under floorboards of hotel

News

Love letters exchanged between two sweethearts during World War Two have been found stashed under the floorboards of a hotel more than 80 years after they were penned.

Scarborough Archaeological and Historical Society shared photos on Facebook showing a huge haul of items dating back to between 1941 and 1944, including a cigarette box, a chocolate wrapper, and tins of Vaseline and tobacco.

The society said workers had uncovered “some wonderful material that hasn’t seen the light of day for 75-80 years” hidden under the old wooden floorboards at the Esplanade Hotel in Scarborough last week.

Work is underway to uncover more of the story behind the possessions, and the faded love letters have been transcribed to make them easier to read.

One letter, which is simply signed off as ‘M’, includes: “Any how I am glad to hear that you are enjoying yourself darling and I will try to do the same although without you now life is not the same for me. You are always in my thoughts day and night.

“Wherever you may go my darling don’t ever forget that I love you more than anything else on earth. I am longing for your leave.”

What appears to be a reply then says: “I received your letter to-day & you sound so depressed, I’m so glad I’m coming home again & perhaps can make you a little happier.”

It continues: “Time doesn’t seem to go so quickly up here & the days drag & I suppose they will fly when I get home again. Oh darling I’m so lonely without you.”

The items were found underneath a small utility room and the BBC reports that during the time the letters were written, the hotel provided accommodation for soldiers in training or between postings.

Scarborough Archaeological and Historical Society said: “The letters are extremely evocative and bring home the personal emotions of people who experienced the traumas brought about as a result of war.

“It would be truly wonderful, if by some miracle, we were able to find out more about these wartime sweethearts and their lives after the war.”

Marie Woods, a member of the society, said it believes the 184th Tunnelling Company of the Royal Engineers, the Royal Signals and the 7th Battalion, Rifle Brigade were among those to have used the hotel.

She added: “When I first started going through the material and realised exactly what it contained I thought ‘Oh my life these are stories about real people’. It’s a real treasure trove find.”