Belfast Telegraph

Friday 1 August 2014

Airport lost bear owners identified

The bear was left behind in a departure lounge
The bear was found along with this photo

Airport staff say they have identified a family that once owned an antique teddy bear left behind in a departure lounge.

The bear was found - along with a photograph dated 1918 and other items - in a carrier bag at Bristol Airport in February 2012.

Staff said the children pictured in the photograph came from South Wales and may have lost their father in the First World War months after it was taken.

But they said they had so far been unable to trace any living relatives of the children, named as "Dora and Glyn" on the back of the photograph in a note to "our darling Daddie".

When the bear was found, airport police and security tried unsuccessfully to trace the passenger who had left it behind.

Staff originally thought the name of the bear was Glyn, but after historians suggested it was actually the name of one of the children, the stuffed toy has been renamed "Bristol Bear".

Airport spokeswoman Jacqui Mills said they had received a lot of interest from around the world.

"We have received interest from photographic history groups, teddy bear manufacturers and ancestry forums," she said.

"We have also received advice from an antique expert that the teddy bear appears to have be an original Farnell Bear and it was this manufacturer that inspired the story of Winnie the Pooh."

It has been established that "Darling Daddie" was Nicholas James Baker, a private with the Prince of Wales Volunteers South Lancashire Regiment.

He was killed in Baghdad on August 15 1918, only months after receiving the photograph, and is buried at a war cemetery in the city.

Pte Baker was the son of Edwin and Grace Baker, husband of Florence Edith Baker, nee Willey, of Thornbank, Ton Mawr Avenue, Blaenarvon.

His children were Dora E Baker, born in 1914, and Nicholas Glyn Baker, born October 4 1916, from the Abergavenny area.

It is thought that Nicholas Glyn Baker died in September 1986 in Newport, Monmouthshire, and he may have married Elsie E Norman in 1941 in Newport.

"We just want to try and find a relation today who might know some more history about who the bear belongs to," Ms Mills said.

"It is the Baker family that we believe Bristol Bear belongs to.

"We believe there are living relatives but we haven't yet been able to find them."

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