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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 1587
Last updated: 3 August 2020
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Type:Boulton Paul Defiant Mk I
Owner/operator:2 AGS Royal Air Force (2 AGS RAF)
Registration: N3458
C/n / msn: 403
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Raskelf, Yorkshire -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Departure airport:RAF Dalcross
Destination airport:RAF Henlow
At 10.45hrs on the 18th of December 1942 the crew of this aircraft set out from Dalcross in Scotland, the aircraft was being ferried to Henlow in Bedfordshire. Before take off the wireless transmitter was found to be not working but the crew took off anyway. They were to make a refueling stop at Catterick on their way south but whilst over Yorkshire the weather was turned bad. Catterick was not located, 10/10th's cloud cover was reported on this day, due to the wireless being unservicable a diversion signal could not be passed to the aircraft to go to another airfield where a landing could be safely made. It was thought that the pilot had flown on and after running low on fuel, had tried to land the aircraft once darkness began to set in. Some sources state the aircraft had suffered engine trouble before its crash, could this trouble not have been caused by the lack of fuel? The pilots choice of airfield could not have been worse, he made a attempted forced landing at 12.15hrs (some sources quote 17.10hrs, a serious difference of time) on Topcliffe's "Q" Site decoy airfield near Sutton Bank at Cold Kirby, no doubt thinking it was a real airfield. Just before touching down his undercarriage clipped a stone wall and the aircraft overturned on striking the ground near Garbutts Farm killing the pilot and badly injuring his passenger. The aircraft was written off.

The aircraft was built to contract 751867/38 by Boulton & Paul Ltd at Wolverhampton and delivered to the RAF in January 1941. After acceptance it was issued to 255 Sqdn at Kirton in Lindsey in the same month. The unit moved to Hibaldstow on 15th May 1941. The aircraft transferred to 456 Sqdn at Valley on 29th August 1941 and suffered a minor Cat A/FA accident on an unspecified date, it was repaired on site. It was later transferred to 256 RAAF Sqdn at Squires Gate on 5th December 1941 and again suffered another Cat A/FA mishap on 11th February 1942 when the undercarriage failed to lower after an air test. It was again repaired on site and was later transferred to MU storage in May 1942 when 256 Sqdn ceased operating Defiants. It was issued to 2 AGS at Dalcross on an unspecified date. It was written off with Cat E2/FA damage in the incident detailed above on 18th December 1942.

Pilot - F/Sgt Alan F Martin RAF, aged 21, of Ilford, buried Manor Park, Essex. He had a total of 512 hours flying to his name at the time of his death, 280 hours of which were on the Defiant.

W Op/Air Gunner - Sgt Pitcher RAF, injured.


Revision history:

04-Feb-2008 15:46 JINX Added
05-Feb-2008 01:27 JINX Updated
22-Apr-2015 20:43 Giggatson Updated [Time, Operator, Departure airport, Destination airport, Narrative]

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