12th February, 1938.
Dr. Somerville Hastings,
43, Devonshire Street,
Dear Somerville Hastings,
I have taken a very long time to consider your recent letter offering to resign your Vice-Chairmanship of the Spanish Medical Aid Committee.
We were all very sorry to hear of your illness, and as you know we had a special resolution passed expressing our sympathy with you, and wishing you a speedy recovery to good health. I can assure you that from all sections of the Committee it was quite a genuine expression of opinion.
I thank you very much for the nice remarks about my Chairmanship in your letter, but I do not want you to take any move with regard to resigning either your Vice-Chairmanship or your membership of the Committee at present. Indeed, I see no reason why we should think of it at all. Many numbers of the Committee, appointed by the other side, were months before taking their seats: such as Dr. Watson from the Post-graduate School at Hammersmith, and Dr. D'Arcy Hart, who now, because of a new appointment, has to live in South Wales, had his resignation declined, even when he offered it to the Committee and I told them he has this change of residence. I think you should hold on and say nothing. It will suit my book very well to do so, and you will remember how we guarded the position when Gillison was ill. I propose to do so in your case, because of the fact that having a member like you in the background approving of the things we approve would have a sobering effect on any opposition in the Committee.
I have not mentioned a word of your letter either to the Committee or to any other member of the Committee, because I think this is a thing that the least mentioned in gossip the better.
I hope you will agree to the course I propose.