Christopher Guy Gilbert, Dorset Regt

1893 Jun 16. Born Southampton Brother of G F Gilbert

1901 census living at Littleham, Devon

1911 census at

Educated at Eastman Naval College

1914 Dec 2, commissioned into the 1/6 Service Battalion of the Dorsetshire Regiment. 

1915 Jul 8. Promoted Lt in Dorsets

1915 Jul 13 Landed in France. Guy originally served in the trenches.  But then, he was transferred to the Royal Flying Corps and served with the 29 Squadron and this is where he 'met' Von Richthofen.   

1916 Nov 5. Appointed Flying Officer in RFC. Transferred from Dorsets to General List

RAF Service record

1917 Mar 25 Taken POW. He was shot down by the Red Baron Von Richthofen at 08.20 while flying his Nieuport 17 A6689.    Based at Le Hameau, his Nieuport Scout was a  fighter escort to an FE 2b plane doing a dawn photographic reconnaissance.  There were a number of two-man escort patrols planned that morning and Guy and a Lieutenant Owen took the first slot at 0705.   It was a new plane for Guy and he thought that as it was a short flight he would be back in time for breakfast.  He decided not to dress, but just put his coat on over his pyjamas. In Von Richthofen's report he says that at 0820 he was flying his Halberstadt DII and saw planes over German lines.  Owen had to return to base as he was experiencing problems with his plane's carburetor. Guy stayed out to carry on with the mission and was alone over the enemy front-line.  Von Richthofen thought this was the last plane (unaware that others followed at later times) and opened fire.  Guy's plane came down near Tilloy-lès-Mofflaines, which is just south-east of Arras.Guy was pulled from the burning plane by German soldiers and taken prisoner - still wearing his pyjamas.  He was in hospital for a while and Von Richthofen sent flowers and fruit to him.  He was The Red Baron's 31st 'victory'.  Guy made a number of attempts to escape from the prisoner-of-war camps, but never quite managed it.  Under the Guns of the Red Baron

He was at Holzminden POW Camp

1918 Dec 2. Repatriated

1920 Sep 16. Granted Short Service Commission as Flying Officer in RAF

1921 Jan 8. The undermentioned Flying Officers resign their short service commissions, and are permitted- to retain the rank of Lieut. : — Christopher Guy GILBERT.

1921 Nov 4. Joined ADRIC with service no 2160 Posted to Depot Coy

1922 Jan 19. Discharged on demobilisation of ADRIC

1928 Oct 26. License of 5 Bells at Henlow was transferred to him

1932 He is Licensee of Queens Head ,Watling St Whitstable

1939 Sep 1. The undermentioned Flying Officers are promoted to the rank of Flight Lieutenant,: — Christopher Guy GILBERT (72663).

1939 Register Living at 74 North Parade , Sleaford U.D., Lincolnshire. With wife Gladys. He is Fl/Lt commanding B Squadron ar Cranwell

1954 Oct. Resigns his commission retaining the rank of Wing Commander

Post WW2 ran the Royal Ascot Hotel in Epsom

1973 Oct/Dec Died Gosport, Hants. Aged 80.


WO 339/16947