Historical places, airship, Bedfordshire local history, airships, national heritage sites, historic preservation, attractions in the UK, heritage sites in the UK, historical monuments, historical landmarks, tourist attractions in the UK, places in UK to visit, tourist in England, historical tourism, R101 and R100 airships.

Shortstown Heritage

The Shorts Era 1915-1920

Navy final jpeg
Final 1915 jpeg map
East Square

Shown left is a very well known early image of the houses in East Square built by the Short Brothers. Documents in the National Archives suggest that the first occupants of these homes took up residence between March - Sept 2018. At this time rents were between 10s 6d to 12s 6d.

Shorts staff

Found in the national archives in a file dated 1920 this is a list of Shorts staff to be kept on by the new RAW administration. Does anyone have any information about any of these people?


Shown left - taken from the National Archives this is a RAW document referring to Shorts workers at Cardington. If anyone has any photos or information about Mr Bretnall and Mr Hird please get in touch.

Airship fabric workers, Short Brothers, Cardington

This fantastic photograph* shows women workers in the Fabric Department in 1919. These ladies would have helped build the covers on the R31 & R32 airships. Some are wearing triangular badges - these were "On War Service" badges and were issued by the Minister of Munitions to females taking part in the war effort. They were issued after two months of service and may explain why not everyone is sporting one. (With reference to the narrative please note that the R101 was not built by Shorts - Jane,)

Please take a closer look at the photograph and see if you can identify anyone - it would be wonderful to make contact with any relatives of these ladies.

*Source: Bedford Central Library Courtesy of Stuart Antrobus. Thank you so much.

As stated in the introduction at the top of this page we are anxious to track down any relatives of early residents of Shortstown. Please make yourself known!

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