Sqn Ldr David Maltby (left) with Wg Cdr Guy Gibson, photographed at RAF Scampton in July 1943. [Pic: IWM TR1122]
The following comment has been made by the grandsons of Sqn Ldr David Maltby:
“It has come to the attention of the Maltby family that a forthcoming auction by East Bristol Auctions features a toy teddy bear called Pinnie the Wooh which allegedly belonged to Sqn Ldr David Maltby DSO DFC, the pilot of AJ-J on the Dams Raid.
It is asserted that this toy bear is authenticated by a typed label which was authored by Ettrick Maltby, David’s father. The label has not been signed by him so the handwriting cannot be compared to the many handwritten letters of which he was the author.
David Maltby’s son, John Maltby and his two grandsons, are alive and well. Having lost his father, John was educated as a boarder at the school, Hydneye House, owned and run by his grandfather Ettrick. Other family members were also at the school, which closed in 1969. The family wish to state that such a personal item would have been retained by the family, that they care for his items deeply, and have never considered selling or profiteering from such an item.
Ettrick and Aileen Maltby had eight other grandchildren besides John, most of whom visited Hydneye when young. None of them can recall any such item being in the school.
The Maltby family are aware that this item was presented for auction on a previous occasion, on which matter they commented similarly at the time. As a family, they are therefore unable to authenticate this item.
They are making this comment in the hope that it will come to the attention of anyone thinking of purchasing this item. They would prefer this item, and any other similar item which might come up for sale in the future, be carefully authenticated and if appropriate preserved as part of a publicly-accessible museum or collection, and that any fees which might arise be donated to the RAF Benevolent Fund in honour of all who lost their lives.”