(2017) Bristol.Teddy Bears of Witney

Bristol Airport staff say they have identified a family that once owned an antique teddy bear left behind in the departure lounge.

The bear was found - along with a photograph dated 1918 and other items - in a carrier bag in February 2012.

The airport made a public appeal to try to trace the owner earlier this year.

Staff said the children pictured in the photograph came from south Wales and may have lost their father in World War One months after it was taken.

However, they said they had so far been unable to trace any living relatives of the children, named as "Dora and Glyn" on the back of the photograph in a note to "our darling Daddie".

Airport spokeswoman Jacqui Mills said they had received "a lot of interest from around the world" since the appeal was made, with photographic studios, teddy bear manufacturers, historians and members of the online family history forum RootsChat.com all getting in touch to offer help.

"We have now been able to source the history of the photograph and we think we have found the family that the bear belongs to," she said.

"'Darling Daddie' referred to a Nicholas James Baker who was killed in Baghdad in World War One, only months after receiving the photograph.

"The little children referred to are Dora and Glyn Baker from the Abergavenny area of south Wales.

"They were sending their postcard to daddy, who was serving in the First World War.

"We just want to try and find a relation today who might know some more history about who the bear belongs to.

"We believe there are living relatives but we haven't yet been able to find them."

When the bear was found, airport police and security tried unsuccessfully to trace the passenger who had left it behind.

Staff originally thought the name of the bear was Glyn, but after historians suggested it was actually the name of one of the children, the stuffed toy has been renamed "Bristol Bear".

Ms Mills added that BBC Antiques Roadshow expert Hilary Kaye thought the bear was made by the British manufacturer Farnells, and was of the type that inspired the Winnie the Pooh stories.

"It would be a lovely Christmas present if the teddy in the photograph could go back to his rightful family," added Ms Mills.


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