LAST week, historian Mark Muller shared excerpts from the diary of a local soldier, Sid Thomas.

Here, we continue his remarkable escape following the disastrous Norwegian Campaign of 1940...

Well I am here. Have had half a loaf of bread to eat and water to drink. The village is Myseler. We have broken into a house and found some rice - we had a good feed.

We have been here two hours, some of the group only coming in now. We have been trying to get in front of the Germans to get back to British troops.

The Captain and about 20 men went down into the lower village to give themselves up.

News on the radio said that all British troops had left Norway. Party all gone to hell, things look bloody hopeless.

Reg, Arthur, Dai and myself are Welsh. Joe and Eric are English. Together we make six, we are going to make for Sweden – not much hope but better than the Jerries.

We have gone right down into the village and found some rabbit bran in another house and mixed it with water and ate it. It was awful but filling. Slept the night. No food left, I volunteered to go into the village for food.

I am leaving this account with the boys in case I don’t come back.

Came back with a tin of fish roe. Have met a lovely looking girl who said that she’d been to school in England. She said that we’d never get to Sweden. She wanted me to stay with her and her mother as they were by themselves. She gave me English cigarettes.

Left Myseler at 3am, arrived at Rondasbu at 7.30pm. Broke into hotel and found ham in tins and beer. Was going to stay for a few days but Jerry party coming.

Monday, May 6: Left. Had terrible hard journey, bloody painful. Thinking I will not last longer – having to help pull Reg along in turns. Blizzard been blowing for the last 5 hours. Can’t see where we’ve been, can’t see where we’re going. Reg have cracked up wants to be left to die. Manage to get Reg going again.

Arrive at Baer Rubisester found rotten meat and had a hell of a good feed. No food left here got to move on. Eating leaves of trees now. Big mountain running east. Come to big river, too deep and fast to cross. House across the other side. Germans or no Germans got to shout for help. Turns out to be Norwegians across the river in boat. I think that they thought we were mad. Left Strombu at 2.30, stayed in a cabin a few miles from Strombu. Hell of a cold night.

Thursday, May 9: Left at 7.30 have come 3 miles. Came to a hotel, broke in and found tin of ham and beer, also fags. Afraid to stay, moved on. Sweden is east so we are going east.

In swamps, thick wood and rock. Got lost. Parker hurt. Dai all out. Jim and I are keeping our end up, both of us come from Pembrokeshire.

We are now in a little cottage on top of a mountain. Been thinking of home all day and bonny Harfat. I bet the people at home are having a good time and don’t know there’s a war on. Parker failed and so we have to lay up.

Had to tell Parker (he) would have to make it or get left behind. I will help him along if he will come.

We are now on the way to Athan. The first time we have walked on a road. We have come to a village and a hotel and the lady can speak English. It’s the first time I got down to a feed that have been laid out and cooked for us.

Bloody lovely, feeling fine now, Parker in bed. Chopped wood in return for lady. German air station 100 yards away. Saw Jerry planes in the sky. Will have to leave here tonight to cross bridge in the dark. German station on our side of the bridge.

Going to sleep in a house where Germans slept last night, only hope that they don’t come back tonight.

*concludes next week.