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Shortstown Heritage

R101 Flight List to India

In all there were 54 people on board the R101 flight to India. The six dignitaries all perished. By cross referencing the remaining 48 persons with newspaper reports publications, and electoral registers at the time it has been possible to trace individual addresses of most of these people and the following facts emerge and demonstrate the appalling loss of life suffered by the small community of Shortstown.

Number of confirmed residents of Shortstown killed Number of confirmed residents of Bedford killed Number of confirmed residents of Cardington killed Number of confirmed residents of Cotton End killed Number of confirmed residents of Wilstead killed Number of confirmed residents of Royston killed Addresses unknown Total Survivors (all confirmed residents of Shortstown Grand total 18 10 1 1 1 1 10 48 6 54

The people listed below all perished on the flight to India - their personal details are shown on the R101 crew members page.
The dignitaries on board

  • 1 Brigadier-General, The Right Hon. Lord Thomson of Cardington (HM Secretary of State for Air)
  • 2 Air Vice-Marshal Sir W. Sefton Brancker (Director of Civil Aviation)
  • 3 Major Percy Bishop (Chief Inspector AID)
  • 4 Squadron Leader W Palstra RAAF (representing the Australian Government)
  • 5 Squadron Leader W O'Neill (Deputy Director of Civil Aviation, India)
  • 6 Mr James Buck, Lord Thomson's valet.
    • Officials of the Royal Airship Works

      • 7 Wing Commander R.B.B. Colmore (DAD)
      • 8 Major G.H. Scott (ADAD Flying)
      • 9 Lt.Col. V.C. Richmond (ADAD Technical).
      • 10 Squadron Leader EM. Rope (Assistant to DAD Technical)
      • 11 Mr Alexander Bushfield, AID
      • 12 Flight Lieutenant H. Carmichael Irwin (Captain)
      • 13 Squadron Leader E.L. Johnston (Navigator)
      • 14 Lt-Commander N.G. Atherstone (First Officer)
      • 15 Flying Officer M.H. Steff (Second Officer)
      • 16 Mr M.A. Giblett (Chief Meteorological Officer)
        • Petty Officers and Charge Hands

          • 17 G.W. Hunt (Chief Coxswain)
          • 18 W.R. Gent (Chief Engineer)
          • 19 G.W Short (Charge-Hand Engineer)
          • 20 S.E. Scott (Charge-Hand Engineer)
          • 21 T. Key (Charge-Hand Engineer)
          • 22 S.T. Keeley (Chief Wireless Operator).
          • 23 A.H. Savidge (Chief Steward)


              Crew members

              • 24 Flight-Sergeant WA. Potter (Assistant Coxswain)
              • 25 L.E Oughton (Assistant Coxswain)
              • 26 C.H. Mason (Assistant Coxswain)
              • 27 M.G. Rampton (Assistant Coxswain)
              • 28 H.E. Ford (Assistant Coxswain)
              • 29 P.A. Foster (Assistant Coxswain)
              • 30 E.G. Rudd (Rigger)
              • 31 C.E. Taylor (Rigger)
              • 32 A.W.J. Norcott (Rigger)
              • 33 A.J. Richardson (Rigger)
              • 34 WG. Radcliffe (Rigger).
              • 35 S. Church (Rigger)
              • 36 R. Blake (Engineer)
              • 37 C.A. Burton (Engineer)
              • 38 C.J. Fergusson (Engineer)
              • 39 A.C. Hastings (Engineer)
              • 40 W.H. King (Engineer)
              • 41 M.E Littlekitt (Engineer)
              • 42 W Moule (Engineer)
              • 43 A.H. Watkins (Engineer)
              • 44 G.H. Atkins (Wireless Operator)
              • 45 E Elliott (Wireless Operator)
              • 46 F Hodnett (aka J.Curran) (Assistant Steward)
              • 47 E.A. Graham (Cook)
              • 48 T.W Megginson (Galley Boy)
                • Those who survived: (Details of these men can be found on the R101 Crash Survivors page)

                  • 49 A.V. Bell (Engineer)
                  • 50 J.H. Binks (Engineer)
                  • 51 A.J. Cook (Engineer)
                  • 52 A. Disley (Wireless Operator/Electrician)
                  • 53 V. Savory (Engineer)
                  • 54 A H Leech (Foreman Engineer Official of the Royal Airship Works)

Scenes from the funeral of the R101 victims buried at St Mary's cemetery in the village of Cardington.

Crowds at the R101 funeral
R101 funeral 1
R101 funeral 2
R101 funeral

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