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Military aircraft crashes in the north west Midlands - 1942

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.

The details 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.

4 January 1942 (04/01/1942) Tiger Moth T7179 of 28 Elementary Flying Training School, Wolverhampton, crashed after hitting a tree at Featherstone. F/Lt A B Mosley and P/O W J S Wright both survived.

13 January 1942 (13/01/1942) Master T8610 of 5 Flying Training School at Tern Hill, crashed while making a forced landing near Gnosall. Crew details not traced.

17 January 1942 (17/01/1942) Wellington X9706 of 27 Operational Training Unit crashed on approach at Kings Bromley. The crew were all killed: F/Sgt J S R Woolnough RAAF, Sgt F E Williams RAAF, Sgt Evan F Webb RAAF, Sgt J Rogerson RAAF, Sgt Malcolm Welsh RAF, Sgt Roy Beeton RAF and Sgt Arthur Savige RAF.

7 February 1942 (07/02/1942) Hampden AT231 of 14 Ferry Pilot’s Pool crashed at Weston Park from unknown causes. The ATA pilot F/O Earl Lamar Renicker (American) was killed.

12 February 1942 (12/02/1942) Master N7802 of 5 Flying Training School force-landed out of fuel in the Birmingham area.  Fate of crew unknown.

26 February 1942 (26/02/1942) Wellington III Z8785 of 27 Operational Training Unit crash landed after engine failure at Trent Valley Railway station, Lichfield. Sgt W A Godfrey RAAF died of his injuries, Sgt D Jennings RAAF and Sgt R Longmuir RAAF were injured. Sgt T Willey and Sgt G H Mellor were unhurt. Sergeant Mellor seemed to have a charmed life; he was to survive a second crash and also evaded capture when he was shot-down on operations.

30 March 1942 (30/03/1942) Anson K6254 of 3 Air Observers Navigation School was destroyed in a forced landing at Halfpenny Green aerodrome.

17 April 1942 (17/04/1942) Anson AX234 of 3 Air Observers School hit a house and the station gym when landing at Halfpenny Green.  Fate of crew unknown.

22 May 1942 (22/05/1942) Magister L8351 of 16 Elementary Flying Training School spun into the ground at Draycott-in-the-Clay when the pilot failed to recover from a practice spin. Cpl James Harrison Allan, Glider Pilot Regiment, was killed.

22 May 1942 (22/05/1942) Wellington Ic R1158 of 27 Operational Training Unit was destroyed by fire in a refueling accident at Lichfield. No report of casualties.

23 May 1942 (23/05/1942) Oxford P1862 of 11 Pilots Advanced Flying Unit dived into the ground whilst practicing night circuits at Wheaton Aston Aerodrome. Sgt Edward Charles Hibbs Doherty RNZAF was killed.

27 May 1942 (27/05/1942) Defiant AA546 of 96 Squadron crashed during a low level practice attack on the Old Camp Ranges. Pilot P/O R B Bowran was killed and P/O B S Cadman in the turret was injured.

5 June 1942 (05/06/1942) Magister L8252 of 14 Elementary Flying Training School crashed on approach to Abbots Bromley. Cpl Sidney John Graham of the Glider Pilots Regiment and Sgt Gordon Henry Evans were both killed.

13 September 1942 (13/09/1942) Wellington I L7815 of 27 Operational Training Unit crashed after an engine failure on take off from Lichfield. The crew were all killed. They were: Sgt W J P Fletcher RAAF, Sgt J A Turnbull RAAF, Sgt Milne RAAF, Sgt F W Lewis, Sgt F Thompson. Later four members of the guard detail were killed when the aircraft’s bomb load exploded: Corporal R M S Zucker, Lance Corporal K Ward, AC1 C Aveyard, AC1 M Marten.

22 September 1942 (22/09/1942) Anson EG166 of 3 (Observers) Advanced Flying Unit overshot an abandoned take off at Halfpenny Green. Fate of crew unknown.

1 October 1942 (01/10/1942) Oxford EB720 of 11 Pilots Advanced Flying Unit was destroyed at Wheaton Aston Aerodrome when it was hit by Oxford BJ692 which was landing. No information on casualties.

1 October 1942 (01/10/1942) Wellington III BJ692 of 12 Operational Training Unit was destroyed when it hit Oxford EB720 during a forced landing at Wheaton Aston Aerodrome. Sgt R A Williams and his crew were unhurt.

6 October 1942 (06/10/1942) Tiger Moth T6704 of 28 Elementary Flying Training Unit crashed at Penkridge after being abandoned in a spin. Fate of pilot unknown.

8 October 1942 (08/10/1942) Tiger Moth N6878 of 28 Elementary Flying Training Unit crashed at Cannock after hitting a chimney. P/O Graham Claude Norton Hill and LAC Stanley Francis were killed.

19 October 1942 (19/10/1942) Manchester R5780 of 1656 Heavy Conversion Unit crashed at Fradley after hitting a tree. P/O Horner, F/O R W Wood RAAF, P/O Forrester RAAF, P/O Murphy RAAF, AC2 S Dobell and AC2 D W Hodges were all killed.

23 October 1942 (23/10/1942) Spitfire Vb ER713 which was on a test flight from the manufacturers, Vickers Armstrong at Castle Bromwich, crashed after suffering structural failure. The test pilot, Flight Lieutenant Sanders, was killed. The crash may have been in the Cannock area: more information would be appreciated.

31 October 1942 (31/10/1942) Wellington Ic Z1083 of 30 Operational Training Unit crashed at Amerton. Sgt R H Wooliams RCAF, Sgt D C Hawk RCAF, Sgt D M Belgrove, Warrant Officer W L Primrose, P/O D S Hegan and Sgt A P Cunningham were all killed. Sgt Hawk was an American from Portland Indiana.

11 November 1942 (11/11/1942) Oxford N4596 crashed in a forced landing at Wheaton Aston. Fate of crew unknown.

22 November 1942 (22/11/1942) Wellington III BK247 of 27 Operational Training Unit crashed after an engine failed during overshoot procedure. The crew were all injured: Sgt Britton, Sgt J A B Cooper, Sgt Morris, Sgt Hickson and Sgt Tuxford. Sgt Cooper was later killed on operations with 103 Squadron.

28 November 1942 (28/11/1942) Wellington Ic X9801 of 30 Operational Training Unit crashed after hitting trees on take off. Sgt C R Kroemer RAAF was injured.

3 December 1942 (03/12/1942) Oxford BG649 of 11 Pilots Advanced Flying Unit flew into the ground short of the flare path at Wheaton Aston airfield. F/Sgt Brian Hereman Hubert Hanan RCAF and Sgt George William Harris were killed.

3 December 1942 (03/12/1942) Wellington III X3944 of 27 Operational Training Unit crashed on approach to Lichfield aerodrome. The crew of five were killed: Sgt R E Mitchell RAAF, Sgt R H Sankey RAAF, Sgt A Brindle, Sgt K H Park, Sgt J B Muir RAAF.

11 December 1942 (11/12/1942) Wellington X3961 of 27 Operational Training Unit crashed shortly after take off from Lichfield Aerodrome. The following were killed: F/Sgt G R Cook, F/Sgt F T J Bryant, P/O G W Harrison, Sgt W T Chandler. Sgt H P Wishart RAAF died of his injuries on 22 December. Sgt I D Maxwell and F/Sgt C Shade were injured. F/Sgt Shade was killed on operations in 1945.

12 December 1942 (12/12/1942) Tutor K3276 of 18 PAFU crashed while force landing at Withington, Staffs.  Fate of crew unknown.

24 December 1942 (24/12/1942) Wellington Ic HF894 of 304 Squadron crashed at Cannock after being abandoned low on fuel. F/O M Pronaszko and his crew were unhurt.

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