Sergeant Robert Swan - 90 Squadron  

Sergeant Robert Swan - RAFVR


Sgt Robert Swan was serving as Flight Engineer on board Lancaster MK.I  HK-610 coded WP-Z for an operation to Wiesbaden on February 2/3 1945 The aircraft departed from Tuddenham at 2052hrs but collided in mid air with another 90 squadron Lancaster, PD -336, 33 minutes later. Lancaster HK-610 went out of control, crashing and exploding at Hengrave, a few miles from Bury St. Edmunds killing everyone on board.

The crew consisted of:

Name Service Trade Hometown  Age
W/C William Bannister  RAFVR Pilot Tunbridge Wells, Kent 33
Sgt Robert Swan  RAFVR Flight Engineer Rotherham, Yorkshire 19
F/L Henry Williams  RAFVR Navigator Cheltenham,Glouc. 29
Sgt Alan Moore  RAFVR Bomb Aimer Harrogate, Yorkshire 22
Sgt Jeffrey Chidwick  RAFVR W/Op/AG Sutton 19
Sgt George Webb  RAFVR Air Gunner Coventry 20
W/O2 John Train  RCAF Air Gunner Hamilton, Ontario 20
Sgt Donald Luxford  RAFVR Air Gunner Battersea 19

Sergeant Robert Swan RAFVR was aged 19 and the only son  Robert and Elsie Swan of East Dene, Rotherham. His death had a devastating effect on his family, especially his father, who died shortly after Robertís death. Robert was training to be an architect when he was called up, he is buried in Rotherham (Moorgate) Cemetery.

The pilot, Wing Commander Bannister was an  excellent athlete having  represented England in the Olympic Games of 1936 in Berlin. He was also a Bachelor of Arts after having read Anthropology at Cambridge University.

W/O Trainís family flew over from Canada after hearing of his death.

W/C Bannister, F/L Williams and Sgt Moore are buried in Beck Row Cemetery, Sgt Luxford in Wandsworth (Earlsfield) cemetery, W/O2 Train in Brookwood Military Cemetery, Sgt Webb in Coventry (London Rd Cemetery). Sergeant Chidwick is buried next to his father in Sutton Cemetery




Photo courtesy of Rose Harris, research by Linda Ibrom