3 MON. Hot still morning, very misty. Wind NE 2mph. C O went to Bethune and left me in charge. Topped up at 2.30 pm and at
3.16 took Gen Wardrope up. (CRA 14th Corps) Very nice man
and most interested in balloon, never been off the floor before. Major Mcneece and Capt Warren visited Sectn. Inspected proposed winch road with Mcneece.
4 TUES. Cold dull morning, wind NW 13 mph. Heavy mist all day, no ballooning. Liardet cursed for going to Hazebruck on light tender to get mess stores. L very upset. Sentenced to three days Orderly Officer.
5 WED. Dull morning and hazy. Balloon up 11.45 with Mcneece and Liardet. No view. 12.14 hauled down. 12.15 let up in ballast at
request of 12th Hussars, as Huns have shelled them. Shells stopped as soon as balloon let up. Wind freshened and hauled down at 4.30. Ground wind 16 miles per hour.
6 THUR. Dull morning. Slight haze wind NE. 10.40 Buchanan ascended 2300 ft no view owing to low cloud. Hauled down to 1900. Fair view. 11.25 balloon winch heavily shelled by 15 cm and 19 cm guns.Shell burst in air in front of and behind basket. 12 holes in ground round winch. Nearest 50 yds away. Large piece of shell passed very close to 2AM Close’s head. I let up balloon in ballast instead of front toggling. Within 3 minutes a shell cut a trace in half and burst in air and would have killed most of balloon crew. Liardet to Hospital.
7 FRI. Dull misty day, NE wind, no ballooning. Mcneece visited Sectn. Orders to move winch to other side of road making track for winch across field.
8 SAT. Strong wind, NE and misty. No ballooning. Men continued
making track for winch. CO threatened to send me up from old position because 6 men were working on wrong part of track. He said he was not going to risk his life and that I was responsible to see that all Officers and men carried out his orders. I was busy doing weekly returns when men were working.
9 SUN. 5th in Lent. Sunny day. Considerable ground mist wind 11.2 miles per hour. Orders to move to new camp. Balloon let up with Blake from new position at 4.20pm. 2450 ft wind 24 miles per hour. Hauled down at 7.11. Men reported to Camp at 8.30 pm. 9pm started dismantling camp. Worked till 12 midnight and turned in at 2am. Blake came into hut in towering rage and swore at Buchanan and others and made them all get up and carry on till 4am. Men the same.