Military aircraft crashes in the
south west Midlands - 1940
Details of the crashes and the names of the
aircrew involved appear on this page. Please contact us
if you are related to somebody on the list, or know of
a photograph of them. If original photographs or
papers are still in the family, we can help to caption
photographs and explain the codes and nicknames that
were used at the time. We appreciate the opportunity
to copy original material for the museum's archive.
The Midland Aircraft
Recovery Group has found the sites of many of the
crashes, but we are still looking for a significant
number, so we'd like to hear from anyone who can
pinpoint a crash that we've listed. We are
always looking for photographs, log books and
anecdotes relevant to the units based in the Midlands.
below are have been compiled from numerous sources of
information in the public domain over many years.
We've done our best, but errors are inevitable. Please
contact us if you have more accurate information on
any of the crashes or people listed, or can add the
names of crew that we haven't traced. Thank you.
10 January 1940 (10/01/1940) Audax K8332 of 3 FTS crashed
in forced landing in the Pendock area.
5 February 1940 (05/02/1940) Shark K5651 of 2 AACU was
abandoned near Kenilworth when lost in fog. Pilot
S/L R J Wilcox and W/T operator A C Verrier were unhurt.
6 March 1940 (06/03/1940) Whitley K7243 was
Armstrong-Whitworth’s development aircraft for the
Deerhound engine. It crashed at Baginton attempting
to take off with the elevators either locked or
incorrectly set. The RAF test pilot, Edward F
Godfray, and Mr D V Edward and Mr Edgar Alan Stroud from
Armstrong-Siddeley were killed.
8 March 1940 (08/03/1940) Tiger Moth N6613 of 9 EFTS
undershot a night landing at Ansty and crashed into a
hedge. The instructor, P/O Craig, and pupil (LAC?)
Maynard were only slightly injured.
5 April 1940 (05/04/1940) Puss Moth X9439 of 24 Squadron
crashed in forced landing at Tewkesbury. Names of
crew not traced.
8 April 1940 (08/04/1940) Whitley K8957 of 10 OTU crashed
at Long Marston after icing up. F/O A L McSherry,
P/O K R Ainsworth, P/O J M Davies and LAC M H Costello
were killed. P/O G W Salzgeber parachuted to
safety. He later changed his name to Salter.
25 April 1940 (25/04/1940) Oxford P1849 of 11 FTS hit a
tree while force-landing at Chaddesley Corbett near
Kidderminster during a cross-country flight from
Shawbury. Trainee pilot Sgt R N Harrison 741615 was
unhurt in spite of the pilot tipping onto its nose.
9 May 1940 (09/05/1940) Whitley K7227 of 10 OTU belly
landed on approach to Pershore. F/O D M Strong was
24 May 1940 (24/05/1940) Hampden P1336 of 106 Squadron
collided with a balloon cable in Coventry while on a
cross-country flight. Pilot P/O J M D Irvine, Sgt
Collingham and A/C Firth were all killed.
31 May 1940 (31/05/1940) Tiger Moth N6590 of 9 EFTS dived
into the ground at Ansty. P/O T E Crossman was
killed, but his pupil was not seriously injured.
5 June 1940 (05/06/1940) Blenheim L1232 of 5 OTU overshot
Worcester landing ground at night and hit a house.
Pilot Sgt T L Armstrong was killed.
16 June 1940 (16/06/1940) Audax K5145 15 FTS Force-landed
after engine failure at Sambourne, near Studley.
Pilot F/Lt J Rankin was unhurt.
19 June 1940 (19/06/1940) Master N7454 of 5 FTS force
landed near Warwick and undercarriage collapsed.
Pilot Sgt F J Haines was unhurt.
15 July 1940 (15/07/1940) Battle L5768 of 3 Ferry Pilots
Pool crashed in forced landing at Bewdley. First
Officer A W Coombs was unhurt.
16 July 1940 (16/07/1940) Audax K2030 of 9 SFTS
forcelanded off Fell Mill Lane, Shipston-on-Stour.
The pilot was unhurt: name not traced.
27 July 1940 (27/07/1940) Hampden P1180 of 16 OTU hit
trees at Upper Heyford and finally crashed at Kings
Sutton. Pilot P/O D M March was killed.
30 July 1940 (30/07/1940) Hampden L4169 of 16 OTU was
abandoned after its controls locked on a test flight,
crashing at Bishops Itchington. Pilot P/O G E Weston
RNZAF was unhurt.
1 August 1940 (01/08/1940) Battle L5075 of 18 OTU crashed
on landing at Bramcote.
1 August 1940 (01/08/1940) Hereford L6067 of 16 OTU
crashed at Shouldern. Pilot Sgt O G Day, 2nd pilot
F/O G H Thevenard, wireless operator Sgt S N Barker and
passenger Ac2 G W Rhodes all killed.
7 August 1940 (07/08/1940) Hampden P2086 of 4 Ferry Pilots
Pool stalled at Honeybourne, attempting to force land
after an engine failure. Pilot P/O A S Malcolm was
8 August 1940 (08/08/1940) Battle L5597 of 301 Squadron
flew into the ground at night in the circuit, at
Bramcote. Pilot P/O D Fengler (Polish) was killed.
19 August 1940 (19/08/1940) Tiger Moth T7032 of 2 EFTS hit
wires at Tewkesbury. Sgt W N Davis died of his
injuries and LAC P W Spencer was seriously injured.
28 August 1940 (28/08/1940) Master N7408 of 5 FTS hit a
balloon cable and crashed at Smethwick. Pilot Sgt F
J Rosbothom was killed.
31 August 1940 (31/08/1940) Tiger Moth K4248 of 14 EFTS
was damaged beyond repair in a heavy landing at
Elmdon. Crew not traced.
16 September 1940 (16/09/1940) Junkers Ju 88 B3+HH Wk Nr
7087 of I/KG 54 hit a balloon cable over Coventry and
crashed at Withybrook. Hptmn Henke and Uffz Rattay
were killed; Fw Baur and Fw Perleberg baled out and both
were taken POW.
26 September 1940 (26/09/1940) Tiger Moth N6794 of 9 EFTS
was damaged beyond repair on this date and may be an
aircraft that came down in Coventry. The names of
the crew have not been traced.
28 September 1940 (28/09/1940) Master N8010 of 308
Squadron crashed on take off from Baginton. Pilot
F/Lt Laszkiewicz (Polish) was unhurt.
29 September 1940 (29/09/1940) Hurricane L1913 of 504
Squadron was shot down by anti-aircraft fire at Bramcote
airfield, was abandoned and crashed at Nuneaton.
Pilot P/O M Rook was unhurt.
7 October 1940 (07/10/1940) Tiger Moth N5478 of 9 EFTS
fouled the barbed wire round a defence position while
taking off from Ansty. Although both airframe and
engine were written off, neither the instructor, F B Day,
nor his unnamed pupil were injured.
11 October 1940 (11/10/1940) Blenheim T2273 of 27
Maintenance Unit crashed in forced landing on Honiley
airfield, which was being built.
11 October 1940 (11/10/1940) Skua L2970 of 760 squadron
crashed at Twyning while flying in formation. Lt A F
Adie and AM1 W H Souls were both killed.
11 October 1940 (11/10/1940) Spitfire P7323 of 611
Squadron became lost returning from an action with Dornier
Do 17s over Wales and force landed at Cooksey Green in
poor visibility. The pilot Sgt K C Patterson died of
his injuries two days later.
16 October 1940 (16/10/1940) Hurricane P3399 of 308
Squadron hit a balloon cable and crashed at Whitley,
Coventry. Pilot S/Ldr J A Davies was killed.
26 October 1940 (26/10/1940) Tiger Moth L6920 of 2 EFTS
crashed at Kinver. LAC John Shirley Bunbury was
injured and admitted to Corbett hospital, Stourbridge. He
recovered and completed his training. F/O J S Bunbury was
killed on the 17th August 1942, whilst flying a Lancaster
of 50 Squadron on a mission to Onsabruk.
28 October 1940 (28/10/1940) Blenheim R3840 of 3 Ferry
Pilots Pool struck a balloon cable in Birmingham.
Pilot First Officer Leonard Satel was killed.
29 October 1940 (29/10/1940) Tiger Moth N5457 of 9 EFTS
hit a tree at Brinklow. Names of crew not traced.
9 November 1940 (09/11/1940) Anson N9945 of BATDU hit a
balloon cable in Birmingham. The pilot P/O Frederick
Phillip Fry, navigator P/O George Edward Goldsmith,
special wireless operator LAC Donald Biggs, Sgt John Edgar
Murphy and Sgt George McGeogh were all killed. This
was almost certainly a special flight to investigate the
German 'Knickenbein' blind bombing radio beams, as the
Anson was flying over the city during a raid.
10 November 1940 (10/11/1940) Hurricane P3891 of 308
Squadron crashed in forced landing at Halesowen.
Pilot Sgt Zaniewski (Polish) was unhurt.
14 November 1940 (14/11/1940) Hart K4769 of 9 FTS crashed
into a tree while attempting to force land at
Whitchurch. Pilot LAC Norman Dennis Steele was
19 November 1940 (19/11/1940) Audax K7322 of 9 FTS ran
into the windward hedge while landing at Hockley
Heath. Pilot LAC R S Richards was unhurt.
19 November 1940 (19/11/1940) Heinkel He 111 G1+KL Wk Nr
2877 of 2./KG 55 shot down by anti-aircraft fire and
crashed at Withybrook. Pilot Oblt Hans Glawe was
killed, observer Fw Wilhelm Gutekunst, wireless operator
Uffz Rudolf Zeiss and air gunner Gfr Xavier Hirschel were
all taken POW.
29 November 1940 (29/11/1940) Reliant W7979 of 1
Camouflage Unit crashed in forced landing on the railway
line at Long Marston. One of the crew was the artist
George Warner Allen who was serving with No 1 Camouflage
Unit and the pilot's name has not yet been traced.
Neither was injured.
4 December 1940 (04/12/1940) Hurricane V7071 of 308
Squadron collided with a balloon cable and crashed at
Ryton-on-Dunsmore. Pilot P/O R Koczor, Polish, was
5 December 1940 (05/12/1940) Blenheim T2353 of 6 Anti
Aircraft Co-operation Unit crashed in forced landing near
Baginton. Pilot Sgt Morawiec (Polish) was unhurt.
5 December 1940 (05/12/1940) Hurricane L2124 of 55 OTU
nosed over on landing at Moreton-in-Marsh. Pilot Sgt
B C Walmsley was unhurt. The same pilot was later wounded
after being shot down over Ta Venezia in Hurricane MkII
Z3061, on 1 May 1941. He was the victim of German ace
Joachim Müncheberg who scored 135 aerial victories in over
5 December 1940 (05/12/1940) Magister N3824 of 5 EFTS
crashed in forced landing near Rugby. Fate of crew
8 December 1940 (08/12/1940) Magister P6450 of 16 EFTS
crashed in forced landing near Banbury. Fate of crew
10 December 1940 (10/12/1940) Blenheim L4844 of 17 OTU
dived into ground out of cloud at Grimley. Sgt G W
Penman, Sgt A Ferguson and Sgt J Roberts were all killed.
10 December 1940 (10/12/1940) Tiger Moth N9115 of 14 EFTS
stalled and crashed at Maxstoke. Possibly two
killed; names not traced.
12 December 1940 (12/12/1940) Audax K7445 of 9 FTS hit a
ballon cable at Longbridge, Birmingham, crashed and burnt
out. Pilot LAC S R Phillips was killed.
12 December 1940 (12/12/1940) Hurricane P2548 of 55 OTU
force landed and overturned at Hunningham. Pilot Sgt
G A Collins was killed.
14 December 1940 (14/12/1940) Dragon AW173 (G-AEMI) of 7
Anti Aircraft Co-operation Unit crashed in forced landing
at Pillerton Hersey. Pilot P/O Tadeusz Walczak and
Sgt T Tubis, both Polish, were both killed.
17 December 1940 (17/12/1940) Hurricane V7403 of 213
Squadron crashed in forced landing at Norton near
Worcester. Pilot P/O R M Chatfield was unhurt.
21 December 1940 (21/12/1940) Tiger Moth T7152 of 14 EFTS
was damaged beyond repair - details unknown.
27 December 1940 (27/12/1940) Hurricane N2458 of 32
Squadron crashed in forced landing at Dunchurch.
Pilot Sgt J M Wright was killed.
28 December 1940 (28/12/1940) Oxford N4575 of 2 FTS hit
wires on overshoot from the unfinished airfield at
Chipping Warden, crashed and caught fire, killing the
nineteen year old pilot, LAC Arthur Gordon Howse.
31 December 1940 (31/12/1940) Tiger Moth K4272 of 14 EFTS
stalled in a low turn when attempting to land Hockley
Heath while lost. Sgt D A Stockton and A Armstrong
died from injuries received.