pink_vader0001 (pink_vader0001) wrote in little_details,
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Three questions re: The Battle of Britain/the Blitz, death, the post, and the RAF

Setting: Britain, September 1940

Searched: oh god, too much to count. Pretty much every variation of "Battle of Britain dead" "dead pilots battle of britain" "shipping bodies home" "recovered bodies battle of Britain" etc. Also went through the 1940s, British history, British military, funerals, and WWII tags on here.

Question One:
I have a character whose son is stationed at Biggin Hill during the Battle of Britain. She sends him letters, and stuff like hand-knit socks for his birthday. My question is: how long would it take for the mail to go through whatever security measures were in place at the time? Like, say, the birthday socks. How early would she have to send them to try to get them to him by his birthday?
Related: if he writes her letters, how long would it take her to get them?

Edit: Alright, so this part sounds straightforward enough, since all I needed was a guesstimate! Thank you!

Question Two:
I have a boy who's a Flying Officer in the RAF (he's 21 and a graduate of Cranwell), in 11 Group squad during the Battle of Britain. He dies in combat (specifically how isn't really important, since the story is about what happens after that). My question is: when his body is recovered, what happens to it? How would it be returned to his family? The dogtag identity disc, I assume, would identify the body, but would they have a family member (in this case mum) identify it anyway in case of a mixup? (Edit: Nope, I just have no common sense.) Where would the body go (since they wouldn't exactly send it to her house)?

And Question Three (which kind of goes along with question two):
His mum was evacuated from London to the countryside. (It's flexible where the mum lives, so I can just change it so she moved from London to someplace a little less urban before the war broke out/before the evacuations.) I assume they wouldn't be able to spare the men to tell her in person, since the Blitz was still going strong (Edit: I guess it wouldn't technically be the Blitz, but I timed it to be right at the end of the Battle of Britain), so would she get a letter? Would there be something about the envelope - black border, official seal, something - that she would know what it was about before she opened it? Would the postman hand-deliver it?
Edit: Mkay, so that would be a telegram, not the post, and a recognized harbinger of bad news, at that. I think I've got that part worked out now.

Sorry to be such a bother! Thank you for all the help!

Edit: So I've gotten a lot of helpful input (and I feel like an idiot now, but sometimes you just have to ask a stupid question or two), but I still have one question I say that, and then it's more like two or three. How would my pilot boy's personal effects be returned home? (Not just the ones he had on his person in the crash, since that wouldn't be much at all.) Would someone bring them to his family, or would they be mailed? About how long after the telegram/letter from pilot boy's CO would that be?
Tags: 1940-1949, uk: history: world war ii, uk: military: historical, ~world war ii
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