During our long research for 'Fly With The Stars' we met many former BSAA staff, and in doing so we were told of many more. We also discovered many documents which referred to names of staff which we hadn't been aware of from other sources. As the research progressed, we decided to add all the names we came across to a list. Some of these people are well known to us, whereas others may have been a name we found on an old document, and we therefore have no idea of their role within the airline. Whilst this list is just a fraction of the staff employed by the airline, it currently extends to over 740 names and is reproduced below for interest.

If any former BSAA staff read this and find that they (or a friend/relative who worked for the airline) are missing from the list, please let us know at info@flywiththestars.co.uk and we'll be happy to add them.



Keith Hayward, the Honourary Consultant Archivist for the British Airways Archive (and himself a former BSAA employee), is compiling a record of BSAA movements in and out of Heathrow for the period 1946 to 1949. This includes all BSAA flights, whether they be scheduled, training or even simply repositioning flights. He is recording the details of the aircraft, crew, dates and times. In fact all the information which would normally be shown in a crew log book.

If anyone still has a copy of an ex-BSAA crewmember's log book for that period, Keith would be delighted to hear from you. Please either telephone him directly on 01895-637872 or get in touch with him via the British Airways Heritage Centre.

Thank you!





LISTS OF NAMES (click on the links to see the lists)

  Surnames: [A-C] Surnames: [D-F]  
  Surnames: [G-I] Surnames: [J-L]  
  Surnames: [M-O] Surnames: [P-R]  
  Surnames: [S-U] Surnames: [V-Z]  

A selection of photos of BSAA staff -


On September 25th 1949 members of the BSAA Cricket Club and their wives had an outing to Brighton. The photo below was taken that day.



My father, Reg Ottaway, is second from right with my mother Muriel alongside him. Alongside her is Betty Wakeham with her husband Jack behind and to her right. The lady third from left in the photo is Peggy Kilpatrick and the gentleman on the far right is her husband (nicknamed 'Pat' or 'Killer' Kilpatrick)! Thanks to Elaine Pope for filling in these details.

If anyone can put names to other faces in this photo, please contact us - info@flywiththestars.co.uk



The photograph above was taken in 1948 during a visit by BSAA staff to the KBB factory in Basingstoke. The visit was arranged by the S.L.A.E. and consisted mainly of instrument technicians.



From left to right, Ron Forrester, Richard 'Dick' Beddoes and Stan Allen in front of Tudor IV 'Star Leopard'.



Ron Forrester (left) and an unknown colleague in front of Tudor IVB G-AGRF 'Elizabeth of England', with the BSAA Avro IX G-AIKM 'Star Visitant' in the background.



A group of BSAA Instrument Engineers in front of Tudor IV 'Star Panther' at Heathrow in 1949. Dick Beddoes is in the white coat on the left of the group at the front, Colin Ross is the left of the two men in the doorway and Ted Snare, the Instrument Shop Chargehand is in the centre of the front row. No other names are known.


Many thanks to Colin Ross for the information.


A copy of a newspaper cutting from either The Eastbourne Herald or The Eastbourne Chronicle in 1944, sent to me by Barry McAleenan, describing the award of a Bar to Hugh Grant-Dalton's DFC.

Having joined the RAFVR in 1939, Hugh Grant-Dalton served as a pilot with 100 squadron before joining BSAA (as either a First or Second Officer) on August 30th 1948, aged just 27. It is not known how his career progressed subsequently.

Many thanks to Barry McAleenan for the cutting and the additional information

  Jean Brennan (née Macfarlane) and her husband John Brennan. Jean was a Stargirl and John was a Radio Engineer. He spent some time working in Buenos Aires, and was at Ministro Pistarini Airport, now named 'Ezeiza', when the first airliner landed there (Avro York G-AHFF on November 7th 1949).  
  Another photo of Jean Macfarlane, this time from a publicity brochure dating from 1949.

Many thanks to John Brennan for this photo and the two above

  I was fortunate to be sent some photographs recently of BSAA crews posing formally by their Lancastrian and then letting their hair down!

The person second from right is flight engineer G. J. Dennis (thanks to his granddaughter Jennifer Hollyer for that information).

If you can tell me any of the other names, I'd be very pleased to hear from you (info@flywiththestars.co.uk).



Pauline Copeland (née Larkin) sent me this newspaper cutting from the Buenos Aires Herald, dated 12th June 1946, showing her arrival in Buenos Aires with her mother. Her father, Sid Larkin was BSAA Station Engineer at Morón Airport from 1946 to 1948 after which he joined BOAC and took part in the Berlin Airlift.

In 1949 Sid was posted to Nassau by BOAC and later joined Bahamas Airways. He died in Nassau in 1983.


Many thanks to Pauline Copeland for all the scanned photos and the information.


Below are some wonderfully atmospheric photos sent to me by Pauline of her father Sid and his colleagues, taken in Buenos Aires.






Sid Larkin is seen here working on 'Star Leader' (G-AHEW), the first Avro York in service with BSAA, at Morón Airport on June 28th 1946. This aircraft was written off less than three months later, on September 7th 1946 in an accident at Bathurst.


Sid and a colleague on the steps of a Lancastrian at Morón Airport, Buenos Aires


  Some officials standing near the rear door of a BSAA Lancastrian, but who are they?  


This is a curious photo as it appears that the tail of the Avro York is jacked up. If anyone can tell me the identities of the people in this group, please get in touch.

  I was recently contacted by Patrick Lemmon, who very kindly sent me these superb photographs of ex-BSAA Stargirl June Knight (née Maddock). June flew on Yorks and Lancastrians, including the trans-Andean routes into Santiago and had many interesting stories to tell about her time with the airline.  


If anyone knows the identity of the Stargirl with June above, please let me know ( info@flywithstars.co.uk ).


UPDATE (Feb 2017) - I have received an email from Ruby Wight to inform me that the Stargirl on the right of the photo above is her grandmother Marian Hale, now known as Janet Wimbush. Ruby had been searching for photos of her grandmother and her search led her to this website! I was delighted to hear from her.

  The group photograph below is a puzzle. The cards the girls are holding say "The Air Ball" and the collecting tins appear to be labelled "The Air League of the British Empire" but does anyone know anything about this event, such as where and when it was held and the reason for the different insignia on the hats? Could it have been a joint BSAA/BOAC/BEA event?

If anyone can put names to the faces I would love to hear from you and will update the caption accordingly.




A more recent photo of June Knight, standing with her friend Patrick Lemmon in front of a Jaguar at RAF Coltishall in the summer of 2005.


  In June 1986, a reunion was held for all former BSAA Stargirls. It was well attended and here are a few photos from the event.

If you recognise any of the ladies in either photo, please let me know!

(Photos courtesy of John Brennan)

(Thanks to Patrick Lemmon, Tim Palmer and Nicholas George for the caption information)

The lady on the left of the photo above is Peggy Palmer and on the right is June Knight.

In the photo below, June Knight is seated third from the left in the back row, Peggy Palmer is standing in the centre at the back and Joy Hickey is second from right in the front row wearing the tartan blouse. The lady on the right of the bottom row is believed to be Sybil Tortensee.


  The following set of photographs were very kindly sent to me by David Milner on behalf of his mother Joan. Those of you who have read 'Fly With the Stars' will remember the serious accident which occurred to Avro York 'Star Venture' on January 5th 1949 at Caravelas, Brazil. Joan's husband Arthur (David's father) was the Radio Officer on that fateful flight and fortunately escaped the accident unscathed. As you can see, there was very little left of the aircraft after the accident and ensuing fire which sadly claimed the lives of three passengers. When Arthur realised the aircraft was about to hit the trees, he laid down flat on the cockpit floor. He was momentarily knocked unconscious in the impact and when he came round he found his seat had a tree branch through it! He realised then that he was lucky to be alive.  
  In the photos below, Radio Officer Arthur Milner is on the left and it is believed the gentleman with him is the First Officer, William Robertson. Robertson, assisted by Milner and Captain Graham, managed to save the lives of many passengers by helping them out of the burning wreckage. The remains of the tail of the York can be seen in the left-hand photo and one of the Merlin engines in the right-hand photo.  

Here the crew are seen relaxing in their hotel a day or two after the accident. From left to right - Stargirl Margaret Owens, Radio Officer Arthur Milner, Captain Albert Graham, First Officer William Robertson, Stargirl Jean Mortleman.  
  Stargirl Jean Mortleman types up the individual statements from each of the crew members regarding the details of the accident.  

Posing with the local wildlife!    

Below is the telegram Joan Milner received from British South American Airways bringing her the news of the accident.


  Brian Mortleman kindly sent me the photos below of his cousin Jean in her BSAA Stargirl uniform. He has posted an account of the Caravelas accident on the Mortleman family website after being told about 'Fly With the Stars' by Jean's husband Cyril, who is now 90 years old. Sadly Jean died in 2001.  


This is how the 'Daily Graphic' reported the accident on January 6th 1949 :


  Ian Cairns sent me this photo of his parent's wedding reception, held at Elliman Drill Hall in Slough. His father, Thomas Arthur 'Tommy' Cairns married Olive Celia Blackwell on July 7th 1951. Tommy worked for Hawker Aircraft as an airframe engineer and then served in the Fleet Air Arm during the war, before joining BSAA at Langley in 1948, moving on to BOAC in the merger and eventually retiring from British Airways in 1981. Sadly he passed away in 2000. The best man on his wedding day (on the left of the photo below) was Pete Lane, another BSAA employee. Click here for an image of Tommy's British South American Airways (Langley) security pass.



  The wonderful photo below was sent to me by Colin Lewis. Colin's father Bob Lewis was an apprentice at the Lagonda car factory in Staines before the war. In 1939 he joined the RAF, eventually serving in North Africa and Italy before returning home at the end of the war as a qualified aircraft engineer. He joined BSAA in 1947, working on all the Avro types BSAA operated. He then moved on to BOAC, initially working on Boeing Stratocruisers and Lockheed Constellations before being sent to Seattle to learn all about the 'new' Boeing 707. He later returned to Seattle to convert to the Boeing 747, an aircraft in which he specialised until his retirement from British Airways in 1981.

Bob is fourth from the left in this photo showing a group of BSAA engineers standing in front of a Tudor V, almost certainly taken at Langley. Sadly he died in 2010. He left no record of the names of his colleagues in the photo, even though, his son tells me, he could still name most of them up until the time he died. If anyone recognises any of these men, please let me know and I'll add their names to the caption.


  I was recently contacted by Jamie McIntosh with information about his mother's time with BSAA. Jamie's mother, Elizabeth McIntosh (née Rasmussen), started her airline career in the 1940s with Westminster Airways, before joining BSAA. Jamie's parents married in 1943 and they had their first son before she started her flying career. Ultimately, it was family life which contributed to her leaving the job she loved, as was the case with many of the BSAA 'Stargirls'.  
  Jamie kindly sent me these wonderful photos of his mother in British South American Airways uniform.

The photo on the left shows Elizabeth standing on the steps of a BSAA Avro York, and below she is dealing with a passenger at one of the BSAA check-in desks.



Jamie also sent me this superb photo of the nose of Avro York 'Star Speed' (G-AHEZ). The particular aircraft was sadly written off in an accident at Dakar, Senegal on April 13th 1947.



  An interesting image of Roland Dismore (the gentleman on the right of the photograph) during his post-BSAA career with BOAC, while he was Service and Maintenance Manager for the Comet fleet. The nose of a BOAC Comet 1 can be seen in the background.

On the left of the group is 'Wilbur' Wright. If anyone knows the identity of the gentleman in the centre, please let me know.

(Image courtesy of Giles Dismore)


If any visitors to this site have any old photographs of BSAA staff or aircraft and wouldn't mind lending them to me, or sending me high resolution scans, I would be delighted to hear from you at ian@flywiththestars.co.uk so they can be included here.  Ian Ottaway