Daily Archives: October 3, 2012

Paying tribute to an only son who died in Lancaster bomber ED 549: Barbadian Sergeant Grey Cumberbatch

Sister places wreath upon grave of Barbadian Royal Air Force bombardier

Royal Air Force personnel, villagers and family members recently unveiled a memorial to the crew of RAF Lancaster bomber ED 549 that crashed near Plungar,  on March 5, 1943. Six of the seven crew members died in the crash, including Barbadian Grey Cumberbatch.

Grey Cumberbatch was the eldest child and only son of Charles WIlkinson Cumberbatch and Ocatavia Ceciliy Cumberbatch née Jordan, of St. Lucy, Barbados. He was born 2nd June 1921 and baptised 34rd July 1921 as Greystone Doyle Cumberbatch at St. Lucy Parish Church. He died 5th March 1943, aged 21, when his Lancaster bomber went down returning from a mine-laying mission over the French port of St. Nazaire – a wartime base for German submarines.

Second contingent. Cumberbatch is front row, left. Barrow is back row, right.

Cumberbatch had volunteered for the RAF and was part of the ‘second contingent’ going overseas that included the future first Prime Minister of Barbados, Errol W. Barrow. Continue reading


Filed under Aviation, Barbados, History