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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 21024
Last updated: 13 May 2021
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Type:Silhouette image of generic CNBR model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
English Electric Canberra B.Mk 2
Owner/operator:RAF Flying College
Registration: WH699
MSN: 71158
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 3
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:2 miles WSW of RAF Strubby, Lincolnshire, England -   United Kingdom
Phase: Initial climb
Departure airport:RAF Strubby, Lincolnshire
Destination airport:
Written off 28.11.1959: Suffered catastrophic electrical failure after take-off, control lost, yawed and abandoned at 2,000 feet and 300 knots. Crashed 2 miles West South West of Strubby, Lincolnshire

Squadron Leader P.M. Walker RAF ejected sustained slight injuries.
Wing Commander F.G. Woolley RAF killed.
Wing Commander C. E. Ness RAF OK.

Per eyewitness report: "The night before the crash I had been trying to set the accels on the port engine but could not get within the tolerance. The aircraft was nominated to depart on a Lone Ranger sortie the next day, so, after some discussion, it was decided to red-line the snag (It was only slightly out) until the aircraft returned.

"That day it was overcast with a low cloud base. I was standing in Chiefy's office when the phone rang and the call came in to say that WH699 had crashed. Chiefy picked up the F700 (servicing record form) dropped it into a drawer and locked it. Obviously there was an inquiry but both I and my big mate George Neilson (Corporal Rigger) who had recently fitted a new tailplane jack, were not too involved. I will always remember George on the phone to Farnborough trying to explain (with hand gestures!) some intricate part of the job.

We heard various reasons for the crash but I do not think it appropriate to comment without some facts."

Just to confuse matters, although WH699 was destroyed in this crash, another Canberra (WJ637) was displayed at RAF Cranwell from September 1982 until late 1995 and painted up to represent WH699

Note: This aircraft was named "Aries IV", and was the holder of several records -

17 Dec 53 London/South Africa (Capetown), Time: 12h 21m 3s, Speed: 486.6mph
Crew: Wg/Cdr G. Petty, Sqd/Ldr T. McGarry, Sqd/Ldr J. Raig.

19 Dec 53 Capetown/London, Time: 13h 16m 25s. Speed: 452.8mph.
Crew: Wg/Cdr A. Humphrey, Sqd/Ldr D. Bower, Sqd/Ldr R.Powell.

14-15 Oct 54 Norway/Canada. 1st British jet flight over the North Pole, Time: 6h 43m.
Crew: Wg/Cdr A. Humphrey, Sqd/Ldr D. Bower, Flt/Lt F. Wood.

28 Jun 55 Ottawa/London, Time: 6h 42m 12s, Speed: 496.82mph
Crew: Sqd/Ldr I.Broom.


1. Halley, James (1999) Broken Wings Post-War Royal Air Force Accidents Tunbridge Wells: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd. p.202 ISBN 0-85130-290-4.
2. Royal Air Force Aircraft WA100-WZ999 (James J Halley, Air Britain, 1983 p 52)
3. National Archives (PRO Kew) File BT233/425:

Revision history:

13-Jun-2008 00:52 JINX Added
13-Jun-2008 01:03 JINX Updated
04-Apr-2013 21:53 Dr. John Smith Updated [Cn, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
04-Apr-2013 21:55 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]
25-Jan-2020 21:26 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Operator, Source, Narrative]
12-Mar-2020 16:15 DG333 Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Operator]
13-May-2021 21:16 Anon. Updated [Operator, Location, Operator]

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