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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 226751
Last updated: 16 September 2021
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Time:20:40 LT
Type:Silhouette image of generic BLEN model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Bristol Blenheim Mk IV
Owner/operator:21 Squadron Royal Air Force (21 Sqn RAF)
Registration: L8739
Fatalities:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:River Meuse, near Tongeren (Limburg) -   Netherlands
Phase: Approach
Departure airport:RAF Watton, Norfolk
Destination airport:
Bristol Blenheim Mk.IV L8739 (YH-D) of 21 Squadron, RAF: Written off (destroyed) when lost on combat operations. All three crew killed. According to the official Air Ministry file on the incident (File AIR 81/313): "Blenheim L8739 hit by anti-aircraft fire and crashed near Meuse, The Netherlands, 12 May 1940. Sergeant A L F Webb, Leading Aircraftman A C B Burgess and Acting Flight Lieutenant A D Watson: missing presumed dead".

L8739 was airborne at 19:00 hrs from from RAF Watton, Norfolk. Shot down by Flak from 7,000 feet. Crashed at 20:40 into the River Meuse, in the vicinity of Tongeren (Limburg), Belgium.

Crew of Blenheim L8739:
Leading Aircraftman Arthur Christopher Burgess (Wireless Op./Air Gunner) RAF 544110, age 22, 12/05/1940, missing believed killed in action
Flight Lieutenant Arthur David Watson (pilot) RAF 39249, age 25, 12/05/1940, missing believed killed in action
Sergeant Alan Lawrence Fortescue Webb, (Observer) RAF 564469, age 25, 12/05/1940, missing believed killed in action.

As no trace of the aircraft or its crew of three was ever found, they are all commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


1. Royal Air Force Aircraft L1000-L9999 (James J. Halley, Air Britain, 1978 p 59)
2. National Archives (PRO Kew) File AIR 81/313:

Related books:

Revision history:

02-Jul-2019 19:16 Dr. John Smith Added
02-Jul-2019 19:16 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]
04-Jul-2019 06:42 stehlik49 Updated [Operator]

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