Letter to Mr Victor Wakeling

Object number

LDVAL 2006.21.3


January 14th, 1980


Letter dated 14 January 1980 to Mr Victor Wakeling from Captain J. Schreuder, Northern Ireland Forces. Captain Schreuder writes to thank Mr Wakeling for all of his work. For 12 years Mr Wakeling spent all his free time collecting books, games and puzzles to be sent to British troops in Brunei and Northern Ireland. He began in 1976 after his brother-in-law returned from a tour of duty with the Air Force and complained how short of books, playing cards, games etc, troops were while serving abroad.

After making a number of phone calls to the WRVS Head Office in London and to the War Office, it was finally arranged that a van from the WRVS Wapping Depot would visit Mr Wakeling to collect any items that he would like to send to Northern Ireland. Mr Wakeling was later asked if he would like to send items to another forces station, and he chose Brunei.

Between 1977 and 1989 Mr Wakeling collected a total of approx. 34,500 books, 956 packs of playing cards, 978 jigsaw puzzles and 52 games.

After the Wapping depot closed in 1989, Mr Wakeling began collecting books for Barking and Dagenham Home Library Service, and has donated approx. 12000 books.

Mr Wakeling has received two awards for his service to British troops abroad.

Physical description

Typescript letter on a single sheet of pale green A4 paper. The paper is headed with the Headquaters Northern Ireland British Forces Post Office logo. The salutation and signing-off are handwritten in black ink.




The Training Team Brunei (TTB) comprises a British Army Infantry Battalion and a Bell 212 Helicopter Flight of the Army Air Corps. The Battalion is supported by the small British Garrison, which provides all logistical and administrative support. The TTB is the Army's jungle warfare school. It runs a number of courses, ranging from jungle warfare instructor courses to long range patrolling and tracking.




Whole length: 300mm
width: 208.5mm

Collection type



Inscription Typed On front: From: Captain J Schreuder Headquarters Northern Ireland British Forces Post Office 825 Tel: Lisburn 511 Ext 2324 30005A Mr V A Wakeling 25 Bradfield Drive Barking ESSEX IG11 9AW 14 January 1980 Dear Mr Wakeling May I, on behalf of the General Officer Commanding and All Ranks in Northern Ireland, thank you for your many gifts of books, jigsaws and games. These have provided our soldiers with many hours of pleasure and relaxation, and do much to relieve the boredom of spending off-duty time in often cramped and restricting conditions. As a small token of our appreciation for your support to our soldiers please accept the accompanying copy of the print “Ulster Impressions” with our deepest thanks. Yours sincerely [signature]

Alternative reference

Entry Number 1656/3 (2006-06-27)

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DateJanuary 14th, 1980
InstitutionValence House Museum
Collection typeEphemera