Re: Flying Officer Walter Robert Bannister (RAFOj killed flying accident 2nd October
A little more on Bannister.
The Lancashire Evening Post of December 15th 1931 reported the death of the Hon. George Garrow Tomlin, son of Lord Tomlin, in an aircraft crash at Nazeing, Essex on Sunday December 13th. He was a member of the Herts. and Essex Aero Club, and the article mentions that Bannister was the flying instructor at the club.
The crash of G-ACPM was widely reported at the time. The Halifax Evening Courier of October 2nd 1934 has the following:
The pilot, Mr. Walter Robert Bannister, was thirty-six years of age, and lived at Crescent View, Blackacre Road, Theydon Bois, Essex. He was married and had three children.
Mr. Bannister had flown 3,300 hours, of which thirty-five were by night. He held the commerical pilot's "B" licence issued in 1926; also the second-class navigator's licence and Post Officer wireless licence. He was a flying instructor between March, 1930, and August, 1932, and had a distinguished war record.
Bannister was on the Reserve of Air Force Officers. He had served in the flying services throughout the war, in the early days with the R.F.C., and later with the R.A.F.
He organised and started the Herts and Essex Aero Club, and also the East Anglian Aero Club, to which he wacted as instructor for a time. As a boy he went to the Willesden Morris Grammar School and later to Oxford.
An article in the Chelmsford Chronicle of October 5th 1934 on the accident includes the following about Bannister, which slightly contradicts the above report:
In June last he ceased to belong to the Reserve, having reached the age limit for his rank. He became a pilot with Hillman Airways a few months ago.
Researching R.A.F. personnel from the North East of England