Royal Engineers at Chatham Postcard

This week’s postcard shows a group of Royal Engineers in the First World War posing on a wooden bridge they have constructed:

The image is almost certainly taken in the UK and by magnifying the image and adjusting the contrast it is possible to read the panel on the bridge which indicates it was built by 327 Party:

The bridge itself is constructed around two large wooden A Frames:

These support the bridge using a set of strong cables in a suspension bridge form. The number of men needed for an undertaking of this size is remarkable and they are standing on the bridge, stripped to their shirt sleeves:

We can actually have a date and location for this postcard based on the writing on the rear:

This reads:

Chatham 3/7/17

Dear Cousin & all I was very pleased to hear Gladys was much better. I hope she will continue to improve. Well Louie, Mother, Father, I, and- will be pleased to see you at 24 & 25 Johns Rd, Barnsley. There is plenty of room for you so please write and tell mother you think of coming, that is if you have not already done so, I expect to be home on Tuesday night, until Monday morning. I may see Arthur on Sheffield Station for five minutes as I change trains. No more this time Love to all I remain your loving cousin Harry

One is left to speculate who Harry is, but my suspicion is that he is one of the men on the postcard and this was sent to inform his cousin that he was coming home on leave. Perhaps this was a last leave before embarking to France?

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