Robert A. Birkbeck

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Robert A. Birkbeck
Born 8 October 1898
Bournemouth, England[1] or Edinburgh, Scotland[2]
Died 9 January 1938
Oxted, Surrey, England
Saint Peter Tandridge, Surrey, England
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch Aviation
Years of service 1916 - 1931
Rank Captain
Unit No. 1 Squadron RFC
Awards Distinguished Flying Cross

Captain Robert Alexander Birkbeck, DFC, was a World War I flying ace credited with 10 aerial victories.[3]

World War I service[edit]

Birkbeck received Royal Aero Club certificate No. 3157 on 23 June 1916 to become a pilot. He was appointed a temporary probationary second lieutenant on 4 March 1917.[4] He joined No. 1 Squadron RFC on 10 June 1917.[5] He flew Nieuport fighter No. B1582 to his first victory on 22 July 1917. He used the same plane for two more wins in August; he then switched to Nieuport No. B6753 for his next six triumphs, all scored in October 1917. He wrapped up his score with his tenth win in Nieuport No. B6826, making him a double ace. His final tally was three enemy airplanes destroyed, and seven driven down out of control; one of the out of control victories was shared with Captain William Victor Trevor Rooper and two other pilots.[6] Birkbeck left the front for England in February 1918. He had been promoted to captain by the time he departed combat duty.[7] He received the Distinguished Flying Cross on 3 June 1918.[8]

Post World War I[edit]

Birkbeck remained in the service and was granted a short service commission when promoted from Flying Officer to Flight Lieutenant on 12 May 1920. He ended his service on 12 May 1931 to become a shipbroker.[9]

Sources of information[edit]

  1. ^ Nieuport Aces of World War I. p. 19. 
  2. ^ Retrieved 28 January 2010.
  3. ^ Retrieved 28 January 2010.
  4. ^ Retrieved 28 January 2010.
  5. ^ Nieuport Aces of World War I. p. 19. 
  6. ^ Retrieved 28 January 2010.
  7. ^ Nieuport Aces of World War I. p. 19. 
  8. ^ Retrieved 28 January 2010.
  9. ^ Retrieved 28 January 2010.


Nieuport Aces of World War 1. Norman Franks. Osprey Publishing, 2000. ISBN 1-85532-961-1, ISBN 978-1-85532-961-4.