At least 15 planes were scouring the Atlantic yesterday for a British Tudor airliner, Star Tiger, many hours overdue on a flight from the Azores to Bermuda with 26 passengers and a crew of six on board.
Among the passengers is Air Marshal Sir Arthur Coningham, who commanded the British Air Forces in the Western Desert.
The airliner’s last message was a routine report, which gave no indication of any trouble. At that time the plane was 440 miles east of Bermuda.
Like all Tudor aircraft, Star Tiger was equipped with lifebelt and liferafts, the latter releasable by the pilot at a touch.
In addition to Air Marshal Coningham, those on board included a British Army major and his wife who were on honeymoon; a Tyneside shipwright who was married just over a week ago who was going to Barbados to take up a job with a firm of yacht builders; and Mr Ernest Brooks, an assistant secretary at the Treasury. One of the two air hostesses, a Miss Clayton, was in a York plane that crashed last April at Dakar, French West Africa. Seven passengers were killed but she was uninjured.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation announced in London last night that a public inquiry would be held into the presumed loss of the airliner.
[The official probe into the fate of the Star Tiger concluded it to be an “unsolved mystery”. The loss of the aircraft helped develop the legend of the Bermuda Triangle.]