Frederick Turner: Letters to his father from Flanders

Scope and Content

Thirty-five letters and telegrams from Frederick Turner to his father in India, March 1918-February 1919, describing his experiences as an artillery signalling officer.

Administrative / Biographical History

Frederick Blair Turner, (1898-1980), soldier and physician, was born at Raipur in the Central Province, India, on 14 December 1898, the only son of Frederick Charles Turner (1872-1950), I.C.S., and Jacqueline Southey. He attended Tonbridge School, 1912-1917, and was admitted at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, on 1 October 1917. Following the outbreak of the First World War, he joined the Royal Garrison Artillery (R.G.A.), and was sent to France in March 1918 as a lieutenant in the 9th Siege Battery, with whom he served as artillery signalling officer until the armistice. Turner was demobilised in February 1919, and matriculated at Cambridge that May, taking his physiology B.A. in 1921. Thereafter, he continued his training as a doctor at the London Hospital (M.R.C.S., 1926; B. Chir., M.B., Cantab., 1937). He joined the Sudan medical service in 1929, and was an Ear, Nose and Throat (E.N.T.) specialist at the government hospital in Jerusalem, 1938-1943. He served in India as a major in the R.A.M.C, 1944-1945, and with the B.A.O.R, 1946. After the war, he was appointed E.N.T. Registrar at Portsmouth Eye and Ear Hospital, and in 1953 joined Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham. He died on 23 August 1980.

Access Information

Open for consultation by holders of a Reader's Ticket valid for the Manuscripts Reading Room.

Acquisition Information

Purchased at auction, Stride & Son, 1 December 2000.


Description compiled by Robert Steiner, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives.

Other Finding Aids

There is a detailed description of the collection in the Additional Manuscripts Catalogue, available in the Manuscripts Reading Room.


Geographical Names