Firewoman with the Auxiliary Fire Service. Killed during an air-raid at Cubitt Town School which was being used as an emergency depot. She was aged 18.
Joan Fanny Mary Bliss Bartlett was born on 21 November 1921, her birth being registered in the 1st quarter of 1922 in the Poplar registration district, London. She was the third of the four children of George Robert Bliss Bartlett (1882-1928) and Ellen Jane Bartlett née Williamson (1885-1953). On 15 January 1922 she was baptised in Christ Church, Isle of Dogs where in the baptismal register her family was show as living at 204 Manchester Road, Isle of Dogs and her father was recorded as a dry dock worker who, during World War One, had served as a private, firstly in the Royal West Surrey Regiment before being transferred to the Labour Corps.
The birth of her elder sister, Georgina F. M. Bliss Bartlett (1917-1917), was registered in Poplar in third quarter of 1917, but she died in infancy and her death was registered in the fourth quarter of 1917 in Poplar. Her brother, Ernest George Robert Bliss Bartlett (1919-1983) was born on 30 April 1919 in Poplar. The birth of her younger sister, Cecilia E. Bliss Bartlett (1926-1926), was registered in the first quarter of 1926 in Poplar, but she too died in infancy and her death was recorded in the third quarter of 1926 in Poplar.
She was a telephonist for the Auxiliary Fire Service and died as a result of enemy action, aged 18 years, on 18 September 1940, when a parachute mine fell on AFS Fire Station 35U, located at Cubitt Town School (now rebuilt and called St Luke's Church of England Primary School), Saunders Ness Road, London, E14 3EB.
She was buried with Auxiliary Firewoman Violet Irene Pengelly on 10 October 1940 in Plot C.WD.2, E54 at the City of London and Tower Hamlets Cemetery, Southern Grove, London, E3 4PX. Her name is recorded on both the National Firefighters Memorial, Carter Lane Gardens, St Paul's Churchyard, London, EC4M 8BX and on a plaque at St Luke's School that lists not only both firewomen but also the other 24 Civil Defence personnel who were killed by this one bomb. She is also recorded in the Civilian War Dead Roll of Honour held in St George's Chapel, Westminster Abbey.
According to both the Metropolitan Borough of Poplar's Register of Civilian World War Two Deaths and the Commonwealth War Graves Commission's website, she was the daughter of G and E. G. R. Bartlett and lived at 61 Henia Street, but it would appear that both these organisations have incorrectly recorded the initials of her parents
Our Picture Source is from a page on London Fire Journal about Bartlett and Pengelly where no information is given about the photo. However, a larger image of the photograph was found in the Isle of Dogs - Past Life, Past Lives website that identifies her as the woman on the right and also gives much information about the bombing of the school.
Credit for this entry to: Andrew Behan.