Letter from Ralph Vaughan Williams to Jean Stewart

Letter No.: 
March 10 [1941]

From R. Vaughan Williams,
The White Gates,
Westcott Road,

My most sweet & belovedest Jean
I am dreadfully distressed to hear from Ursula that you have been very ill - I do hope you are better now - & if this letter will do a little towards it how pleased your old uncle would be!
You must be well to come & play in our Dorking Festival (April 26 & May 3) - What would it be without those lovely sounds from your viola & the light from your sweet eyes. War makes one do queer things - last week was our "War Weapons Week" - & I had to make a speech (5 minutes) in the local cinema.
And now as Vice-Chairman of our refugee committee I've got to write to the Duke of Newcastle and ask him to give us some dung for the hostel garden!!1
CEMA2 sent us "The women's string orchestra" the other day  - very good - but they evidently do not have to pass a 'sight test' (with one or two exceptions) - I had a vain hope that I might see my Jean leading the violas!
It is wonderful how people are hungering for music - perhaps the war will bring us that that people will realize that they can't do without it - up to the present it has been too often times the "Les Anglais aiment assez la musique, mes il s'en passe tres bien".
Now my sweet Jean as soon as you are able write & reassure
your very loving
Uncle Ralph

1. Dorking and Dustrict Refugee Committee
2. Council for the Encouragement of Music and the Arts

Location of original letter:

General notes: 

Date year estimated from dates of concerts mentioned (assumed to be Saturdays, in 1941) and war time references.