updated 23 November 2015



R. J. Mitchell


Reginald Mitchell



Reginald Joseph Mitchell was born at 115 Congleton Road, Butt Lane on 20 May 1895. At the time Butt Lane was part of Audley Urban District. His father Herbert, born in Holmfirth, Yorkshire (the setting for the TV series Last of the Summer Wine) was a schoolteacher at the National School in Old Butt Lane before his marriage to Eliza Jane Brain who was also a teacher, born in Longton. They married at Normacot, Holy Evangelist Church, in 1893. Three of the Mitchell children were baptised at St Martin's Church in Talke while the family lived in Butt Lane; Hilda May on 9 April 1894, Reginald Joseph on 3 July 1895 and Herbert Eric on 14 February 1897. Soon after, the family moved to Chaplin Road in Longton.

R. J. Mitchell married Florence Dayson in 1918 at St Peter's Church in Caverswall, by which time he was working for Supermarine Aviation in Southampton. He went on to gain lasting fame as the designer of 24 aircraft, including the most famous of all, the Supermarine Spitfire of World War 2. The prototype Spitfire K5054 first flew on 5 March 1936. Mitchell lived long enough to see the aircraft fly, before his death from cancer on 11 June 1937 at the age of 42. His memorial is in South Stoneham Cemetery, Southampton. A plaque to his memory was unveiled in 1951 at his birthplace in Butt Lane and a blue plaque erected in recent years. A nearby school was renamed in his honour.


Clive Millington  


1881 and 1891 Censuses