Arthur, Baron Tedder

Arthur Tedder, 1st Baron Tedder, is one of the Royal Air Force wartime leaders remembered in the RAF chapel in Westminster Abbey. The surnames were painted on the stonework just below the Battle of Britain window in 1989. All were Marshals of the RAF and, with Tedder, they are Lord Dowding, William Sholto Douglas, Baron Douglas of Kirtleside, Sir Arthur Harris, Cyril Newall, 1st Baron Newall, and Charles, Viscount Portal of Hungerford.

Arthur was born near Glasgow on 11th July 1890, a child of Sir Arthur Tedder and his wife Charlotte (Bryson). He was educated at Cambridge and instead of an expected diplomatic career he joined the army. During the First World War he transferred to the newly formed Royal Flying Corps and saw action on the western front, becoming a squadron leader. In 1915 he married Rosalinde Maclardy (killed in 1943) and they had two sons and a daughter. Later he spent time in Constantinople and Singapore and was made an Air Vice Marshal. At the outbreak of war in 1939 he was with the Air Ministry as Director General of research and development. He was soon posted to Cairo as Air Marshal and was knighted in 1942. A few months after his first wife's death he married Marie Black and had one son. Tedder was General Eisenhower's deputy for operation Overlord (the D-Day landings) and with him received the German surrender on 7th May 1945. He became Marshal of the RAF and Chief of the Air Staff and was created Baron Tedder.

He died at his home in Surrey on 3rd June 1967 and his ashes lie in St Clement Danes church in the Strand (the RAF church in London). His son Arthur was killed in 1940 and his son John Michael succeeded as 2nd Baron Tedder.

Further reading

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2004


11th July 1890


3rd June 1967



Arthur, Baron Tedder
Lady Chapel (Picture: Jim Dyson)

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