The Crusader, Eighth Army Weekly, No. 42, Vol 4, February 15th 1943

C R S U A D E R Springtime in Kent. On the brow of the hill is a characteristic oast house in which hops are dried. CRAZY CORPSES ! Thirteen top-line W est End stage and va­ riety stars (unpaid) staggered the audience at the Strand Theatre on the opening night of the shocker, “Arsenic and Old Lace.'' The play concerns two “lacey” old spins­ ters whose antidote to boredom is murder. Together they are responsible for thirteen corpses during the action of the play. The audience .'howled when after the cast_ had taken the curtain call, somebody called for the corpses. On the stage, in full make-up marched Flanagan and Allen, Robert Mor- ley, Bobby Howes, Sydney Howard, Al­ fred Drayton, Robertson Hare, Richard Hearne, Tommy Trinder, Vic Oliver, Ar­ thur Askey, Jerry Verno and Douglas Byng. The thirteen corpses appeared for one night only. Originator of the gag was variety’s biggest leg-puller, Bud Flanagan. * * * WATER PITY ! London shares with the whole country in the increase reported in beer drinking. Where six pints were drunk before the war, seven are now swallowed. Officials state that the reason for the increased con­ sumption is because the beer is weaker. * * * MINERS’ HOTEL The Gleneagles Hotel has been reopened as a rehabilitation centre for Scottish miners, 200 of whom can be accommodated at one tim e. Sotdiers of the Red Army, on a visit to Britain, saw in production the famous six- pounder gun. The soldiers ape members of the Soviet Military Mission. LOCAL GOVT. "GUINEA-PIGS" Sixty members of the Weston-Super-Mare Borough Council staff have volunteered for a cold cure experiment under Dr Cyril East­ wood, medical officer of health. Two groups are daily taking capsules of vitamin con­ centrates, while the remainder not taking capsules are being used as a control. Re­ cords of reactions are being- kept to see if colds — most frequent cause of absentee­ ism — can be diminished. FELL FROM EXPRESS M ichael Baker, aged seven, travelling with his parents from Paddington to Aberdare, South Wales, fell from a G.W.R. express near Langley, Bucks, when the train was travelling at full speed. The train was stop­ ped and gangers found the boy on the grass verge of the track practically uninjured. He has now fully recovered. * * * LOWESTOFT CLIFF FALL High tides and a heavy swell have recent­ ly scoured away a considerable area of cliff at Pakefield, near Lowestoft. A comer of the old churchyard with its wall, has gone, and the occupants of cottages have been standing by ready to evacuate their homes. Longshore fishermen, whose stores were threatened, moved their gear and huts, and afterwards saw the ground on which they had stood collapse on to the beach. * * * COAL CROP RECORD Last week Nottinghamshire miners brought to the surface the largest amount of coal ever produced in a similar period in the history of the country’s coalfields. HIGHBROWS HEATED ! The Incorporated Society of Musicians un­ animously adopted the following resolution at its annual meeting in London : “This meeting views with apprehension the continued debasement and mutilation of the classics by dance band leaders and others. Such a habit, contrary both to good taste and good manners, should not be tolerated in an enlightened community.” * * * REMOVALS BY GLIDER Gliders were used recently for the first time by a Mustang squadron of the R.A.F. Army Co-operation Command to transfer the entire ground and clerical staffs of the squadron from one airfield to another. The operation was completed in one hour. The gliders were piloted by sergeant-pilots of an Airborne Division and were towed by twin-engined bombers. * * * WATER BY PARACHUTE British Overseas Airways aeroplanes will soon carry parachute water containers to be dropped on survivors from ships. The suggestion was made by Captain A. G. Store who piloted the flying boat Berwick when it helped save 20 survivors in a ship’s boat off the coast of Liberia recently. * * * C.I.D. CHIEF FOUND SHOT Detective-supt. Cyril George Boneham, chief of the Coventry C.I.D. has been found dead in his office with a bullet wound in his head and a revolver lying near. * * * BLANKETS SAVE FUEL HI embers of the Select Committee on equal war injury compensation wrapped their feet and legs in blankets which were provided in a room of the House of Commons last week. In order to save fuel the room was not centrally heated. * * * BRIGHTER BLACK-OUT London buses and trams are now allowed better lighting during the black-out. Strong­ er lamps are being fitted, and it will be possible to fit 55 buses with producer-gas plant, thereby effecting a saving of 3,500.000 gallons of petrol a year. H.M .S. Royal Eagle’ ', one of the largest paddle steamers afloat in European waters, carried thousands of peace time pleasure makers from Tower Bridge to Southend and Ramsgate. She now has a distinguished battle, record, and picture shows ratings filling pom-pom ammunition belts on board. -2 -
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