A postcard sent by a World War One soldier has finally been delivered – one hundred years late.
The card bears a ½d green stamp with the head of King George V, the Queen’s grandfather, and was posted in November 1917.
It was sent by a soldier called Ted, who was writing to his friend Miss Tomkins about a job.
She appeared to be working as a servant for Sir William and Lady Gundry, who lived at North Lodge, in Enfield, Middlesex, until 1920, but was looking for new pastures.
The long-lost card bears a ½d green stamp with the head of King George V, the Queen’s grandfather, and was posted in November 1917 by a soldier called Ted
The postcard, which features a picture of Winchester, was finally delivered to the headmaster at St John’s Senior School, Andrew Tardios, who spotted it while sorting the school’s regular post.
The school, which used to be a young offenders’ institute, took over the house and 28-acre grounds in 1993. It had been a country mansion when the post card had been sent.
When Mr Tardios asked the postman where it had come from, he was told it was just part of the normal delivery.
The card, which is addressed ‘care of’ the Gundry family, reads: ‘Just a line hoping this will find you quite well.
‘Mr Sane says don’t trouble to come all this way for an intro as he says if you call in any time you can make yourself known and Mrs Sane will be pleased to see you any time you are long this way.
‘I hope to see you at church on Sunday morning if time.’
It ends with the phrase ‘yours to a cinder’ – a popular sign off used by those serving in the armed forces at the time.
After sharing the contents with pupils Mr Tardios is now hoping to trace the sender.
He is asking for anyone who might have any idea who the mysterious Ted is to contact him at the school.
The headmaster said: ‘The postcard has amazed us all here at the school. It was delivered in our normal post but the postman never noticed he had delivered a post card 100 years late.
‘It was only when I was going through the post (and because I collect stamps) that I realised the stamp on the card was actually a ½d green.
‘It bore the head of King George V, who died in 1936 and the cancellation on the stamp has the date November 16, 1917.
‘When I checked with our postman he wasn’t able to shed any light on how it came to be delivered so late. As he said, “I just deliver what I’m given”.
The postcard was finally delivered at the end of the summer term last year.
St John’s Senior School in Potters Bar, Hertfordshire, which used to be a young offenders’ institute, took over the house and 28-acre grounds in 1993
He added: ‘The postcard is addressed to a Miss Tomkins c/o Lady Gundry.
‘Sir William and Lady Gundry lived here, at North Lodge.
‘From the context it seems Miss Tomkins was a servant here at North Lodge and in need of a job. The writer “Ted” is providing an introduction.
‘The stamp itself is not worth very much, despite its age – the story is much more interesting than the stamp!’
The Gundry family left North Lodge in 1920, and moved to Seven Oaks, Kent, where Lady Gundry’s daughter, Eileen, lived until she died a few years ago.
St John’s, a co-educational day school, charges £13,000 fees and takes pupils from aged from four to 18.