Accident Avro Tutor Mk I K3201,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 206954
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Date:Thursday 20 February 1936
Type:Avro Tutor Mk I
Owner/operator:RAF College
Registration: K3201
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:RAF Cranwell, Cranwell, Sleaford, Lincolnshire, England -   United Kingdom
Phase: Initial climb
Departure airport:RAF Cranwell, Lincolnshire
Destination airport:
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
Avro Tutor Mk.I K3201, RAF College, Cranwell: Written off (destroyed) 20.2.36 when broke up recovering from spin, at RAF Cranwell, Lincolnshire. Both crew killed:

Squadron Leader Gilbert Henry Martingell AFC (pilot/instructor, aged 39)
AC1 Robert Tomlinson (pupil pilot, aged 18)

According to the official Air Ministry statement - published in "Flight" Magazine (27 February 1936 page 228 - see link #5):


Sqn. Ldr. Gilbert Henry Martingell, AFC, Royal Air Force, and A/C. 1 Robert Tomlinson lost their lives in an accident which occurred at Cranwell on February 20, to an aircraft of the Royal Air Force College, Cranwell. Sqn. Ldr. Martingell was the pilot and A/C.1 Tomlinson the passenger."

According to the following excerpt from the book "Almost a Boffin: Why He Invented The Cruise Missile" By E.E. Vielle:

"...on February 20, 1936, I learned that [Squadron Leader] Martingell, together with a pupil, Flight Cadet Robert Tomlinson, had been killed in an aircraft crash 15 minutes after taking off from Cranwell in Tutor K3201 - the cause of which was never fully established.

The aircraft appeared to have dived almost vertically into the garden of the Married Quarters of [Squadron leader Martingell's] wife Phyllis. One theory into the cause of the crash was that the pupil pilots parachute had become jammed against the control column, another that the pupil pilot had become 'frozen' at the controls"


1. Royal Air Force Aircraft K1000-K9999 (James J. Halley, Air Britain, 1976 page 22)
2. Almost a Boffin: Why He Invented The Cruise Missile By E.E. Vielle

Revision history:

02-Mar-2018 13:36 Dr. John Smith Added
06-Apr-2018 12:16 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]
28-Mar-2019 13:32 stehlik49 Updated [Operator]
17-Dec-2019 18:19 Nepa Updated [Operator, Operator]
19-Dec-2020 20:40 Sergey L. Updated [Location, Narrative]
19-Jul-2021 14:08 Anon. Updated [[Location, Narrative]]
13-Jul-2023 21:40 Nepa Updated [[[Location, Narrative]]]

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