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Harrogate Herald - 24th January 1917

Pioneer H A Robinson, writing from the Western Front, says it is very cold there, and adds :

I was employed until joining up by Mr E Wilson, grocer, Cambridge Street [E Wilson, Grocer & Provision Dealer, 15 Cambridge Street], also at the local telephone office as a night operator, and have put "PA London" through to you many a time. I am in a billet, and have with me in the same a man named Firth. He is a cousin of Alderman W J Binns, and comes from Bradford. I also work along with a chap from Ripon named Donnison, so I have one or two friends here that don't live far from me. I am out here as a telephone exchange operator, but it is a bit harder work than at the local exchange. Thanking you for the Herald, which I look forward to.


Harrogate Herald - 25th April 1917

W H Breare letter

I have received quite a budget of news from Pioneer H A Robinson, who has just been in to see me. He is the son of the late Mr and Mrs Robinson, 20 [?] Electric Avenue, New Park. The family have had a stall in the Market nearly thirty years, so they will be well know to you. Robinson could not leave for some time, as he is a telephone operator, and there was no one to take his place. He is now on leave for ten days. Robinson has put me through to London and elsewhere many a time when he was at the Harrogate Telephone Exchange. He is located at the headquarters of his lot. I am glad to say he has never had a day's illness since he went out, and has never missed getting his Herald. My visitor had seen Stephenson, whose father is a building contractor, and lives on Skipton Road. Robinson's pal at the telephone work is Donnison, of Ripon. They relieve each other on the same job. He thinks Donnison worked for us at one time, but I do not remember him. Donnison worked at Ripon in the printing business before he went out to the Front. The Ripon firm for whom he worked bought the business of Armstrong, Harrogate, and Donnison came to manage it. another local man he had seen was Firth, of Bradford, a cousin of Alderman W J Binns. Firth is not with him now, as he got blood poisoning, and had to be sent back to the base. He saw a Starbeck last a week ago, but had forgotten his name. The man was bringing up recruits. You may remember Robinson's father fractured his ribs, and then shortly after fell downstairs and was killed. My caller's wife is the youngest daughter of ex-Councillor H Abbott, who has been living the last eleven years at Whitley Bay. I often wondered that I never saw Abbott, and am glad to know now he is very well. He sees lots of Harrogate chaps where he is. Robinson's wife's youngest brother (Gunner W S Abbott) is in the Bath Hospital now with rheumatism. He was in that push of the 1st of September, and out at the Front up to January of this year. By then his battalion had been so knocked about that the doctor ordered it out of the line. Young Abbott came on a stretcher all the way from France. I am sorry to say that his heart is bad, too bad to undergo certain treatment for his rheumatism. He will be discharged, however, before long, and then I expect it is light duty for him. By the way, the RE Signallers, to whom Robinson belongs, beat the West Riding Casualty Clearing Station at football by 4 goals to nil.