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Sainfoin’s War
By W.J. Mitchell and Colin Buckenham



To the Mothers, Wives and Sweethearts of the men of the British Pacific and East Indies Fleets, The so called "Forgotten Fleets" who were finally remembered by Portsmouth in a Grand Re-union in 1995, which was attended by men and women from America, Australia and Britain, and of course our wives who waited at home during those traumatic times.

"Bless 'em all"


Welcome to this latest version of "Sainfoin's War" which is an extension of my first attempt at writing. Much better writers than I will ever be, have written books of the horror, bravery, sadness and tears of the last war so I will not even try to match their talented skills. As I said in the original book, we were young men caught up in a war and gave little or no thought of keeping a diary of our day to day experiences (this was in fact discouraged) and so we lived for today, tomorrow was another day which, sadly for a lot of young men never came. So now with the help of my shipmates ( alas! too few ) I have put together a compilation of stories just to show that even in wartime there was laughter as well as tears, there may be one or two sombre reflections but through it all there is a feeling, a sense of togetherness that is hard to explain but I will try. Maybe the grammar is not quite up to literary standards but this is how it is told in simple language as it happens to come to mind even though it is over fifty years ago since these events took place. These stories may show why at times we felt that the `Jolly Roger' at the mast would have been more appropriate than our highly respected white ensign,'No offence my Lords', just an observation. And so, I hope you, the reader, will have as much pleasure in reading this book as we 'Sainfoiners' had in putting it together.


My most sincere thanks to Mrs. Rosemary Zaleski, Daughter of Captain Trimble. She now resides in Spain with her husband. Also to Mr. David W. Trimble, nephew of the Captain, who resides in Dalston, Carlisle. Without their help and permission the interesting story of the late Capt. R. Trimble and `Takliwa' could not have been written. And again my thanks to `Hawk-Eye' Ray Self whose help in getting this book to print in between the `numerous' other duties has been great. And last but not least my thanks to Ben Sullivan M.B.E. for his `Empire Crossbow' information, Ship-mate Dick Imrie and Eric Slack for their in-depth history of `Sainfoin's' Birth, and Takliwa specifications.

Walt Mitchell, May 1999

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