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Private Stanley Hind Leedale

 
 

Harrogate Herald - 22nd December 1915

In the following letter, S Hinde Leedale, son of Mr and Mrs R Leedale, [Probably Robert Leedale, joiner, 44 King's Road] of Harrogate, gives an interesting description of a journey up the Nile Valley :

Since writing you many weeks ago from Malta, many varied experiences have been ours. When our camp moved across the island to Valletto, I was attached to the headquarters at the Wounded Inquiry Bureau, and whilst the battalion was continually engaged on fatigues, funeral parties, etc., we at the WIB were busy day and night with records of wounded, seeing to their correspondence and dealing minutely with "deceased's effects". Some of your readers will be consoled to know how carefully the private belongings of the fallen were dealt with and duly sent to the proper quarters. Then we sailed on a large P & O liner for Egypt. The railway journey up the Nile Valley from Alexandra to Cairo was a wonderful one. Each side of the track seemed a far-reaching level of green-maize and sugar-cane, almost identical in appearance, to the short cotton plant, very much like currant bushes, with here and there a group of trees or a cluster of palms with large yellow bunches of ripening dates encircling the top of the trunk. Much of the scenery was very English, in parts very like the Bedford Level or certain views of the York Plain. Farther inland, however, the Oriental asserted itself, as along the bank we passed a native at prayer towards the rising sun, plodding donkeys carrying their long-limbed owners in blue robes and fez. Now a group of black-gowned women wended their way, their earthenware jars gracefully poised on their heads; then a string of heavily-laden camels, their heads high in the air, ambled by with awkward gait. Cairo is a wonderful mixture. One sees a wide, clean, macadamised road (which would be a credit even to Harrogate), over which pass and repass well-equipped open carriages, the black native driver in his red fez dextrously handling his pair of horses; strings of patient camels, donkey-drawn flat carts like a hurdle on large wheels, whereon sit some half-dozen women entirely in black except for the brass cylinder of their veil pendant from forehead to nose; electric trams, single deckers, two together, run along the right-hand side (all vehicular traffic follows the Continental rule of "keep to the right"). Most of the shops are cafes, and the footpath is more or less littered with small tables and chairs, where male Cairo spends the day drinking black coffee (quite equal to Standing's), smoking hookahs, and playing an Arabic game, something between chess and draughts. Now turn off this main street up any sideway, and the utter contrast surprises you. Narrow alley ways they are, no footpaths, generally full of Egyptians proper, Sudanese, Armenians, Greeks. The shopkeeper sitting cross-legged at the front of his goods, for there is no doorway, sticks his knees into the roadway. A native of the better class, judging by his purple robe, comes along on his white donkey, and the pedestrians are squeezed between the animal and a pile of brass curios or carpets. Of mosques, bazaars, street sellers, and of customs, one could write reams. One thing before I close - the Sphinx! To me it was disappointing. Every photograph of it shows one of the large pyramids in the background, and thus it appears almost as large. The pyramid, however, in question is some two miles away, and the Sphinx itself, or what was left after Napoleon's "Germhun sausion", is in rather a hollow, and although wonderful, even sublime by moonlight, as I was able to see, fortunately, is not as huge as the photographs would lead you to expect. But our camping on the edge of the Libyan Desert was brief. Two more transhipments plonked us in view of -----, and we are now upholding the obligations of "a scrap of paper". Accept with this my continued appreciation of the Herald.

[Is this correct - Maybe Pte S Hind..??]

 

Harrogate Herald - 14th March 1917

W H Breare letter

Stanley Leedale, brother of my Naval friend, Arthur Leedale, has been transferred from France to this country, where he is performing military duty.

 

Harrogate Herald - 4th July 1917

W H Breare letter

My tether is running out, and I shall have to be brief and summarise. I have had visits from Private S Hind Leedale, who has been transferred to a home establishment; Arthur Leedale, who is an artificer in the Navy, and well-known to you lads; Corporal G G Jackson, son of Mr and Mrs W C Jackson, of 16 Unity Grove (New Zealanders); Private W Burrill, son of Jack Burrill, my old friend who used to play the double bass in the original Harrogate Minstrels; and Lance Corporal Wilfred Mawson, son of Mr J Mawson, Cold Bath Road.

 

Harrogate Herald - 2nd July 1969

The death occurred on Thursday of Mr Stanley Hinde Leedale, of Jasmine Cottage, Little Ouseburn, who was well-known for many years as a teacher in Harrogate.

He started his career as a pupil teacher at Western School in 1905, and after training at Westminster College and Halsey College, London, he returned to teach at King James's Grammar School, Knaresborough, before working under the London and Durham County Councils.

During the 1914-18 war Mr Leedale served with the 2nd London Regiment, RN Division, an Egypt and Gallipoli, being one of the last to be evacuated from the peninsula. He was later engaged on staff work in Malta and Ruen.

He taught commerce at various technical institutes and was elected a fellow of the faculty of Teachers of Commerce in 1920, becoming chairman of the Yorkshire District three years later. In 1935 he was elected to the National Executive, and became President in 1939. Mr Leedale retired in 1950 after 45 years' teaching, 22 years being at Western School, Harrogate.

He was always interested in folk dancing. He was a past Master of Harlow Lodge of Freemasons.

Mr Leedale leaves a widow and two daughters. A funeral service followed by cremation was held at Stonefall on Monday.

 

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