Military aircraft crashes in the
north west Midlands - 1945 to 1953
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.
4 January 1945 Wellington X LP729 of 10 OTU was attempting
to reach Wheaton Aston following an engine failure, but
dived into the ground at Church Eaton. The rear gunner,
F/S J.R. Gammon was injured, the rest of the crew were
killed: F/S F C Haglund RNZAF, W/O N W Harnett, Sgt A W
George, F/S M H Walton RNZAF, F/O B A Hogg RNZAF, Sgt C
20 January 1945 Tiger Moth N6920 of 14 EFTS crashed at
Tamworth whilst attempting a forced landing during a snow
storm. Fate of pilot unknown, but P/O Richard Henry
William Stoneman died in this area on this date. His trade
is given as ‘navigator’.
4 February 1945 Anson N9618 of 3 OAFU was hit by another
aircraft whilst parked at Halfpenny Green.
22 February 1945 Tiger Moth NL912 of 9 MU crashed at the
Britool factory in Bushbury, Wolverhampton. F/Sgt A Barton
and F/Sgt E E Evershed were both killed.
9 March 1945 Tiger Moth II DE473 of 16 EFTS was struck by
Halifax NA317 while on approach to land at Abbots Bromley
airfield. The pilot, F/Sgt Alan Reginald Edwards and his
pupil, AC2 Alan John Mclaren Keay were both killed.
The Halifax, of 1665 HCU, crashed half a mile to the
north. The crew were all killed: F/O J W Cairns, W/O A G
Hemmings, W/O K Millard, Sgt P Richman, Sgt J Forbes, Sgt
12 March 1945 Blenheim BA238 of 12 PAFU struck trees and
crashed near Chartley whilst on a night flying exercise.
F/O R Martin was killed.
12 March 1945 Liberator III BZ784 of 51 MU suffered a
collapsed nose wheel while landing at Lichfield. The
aircraft probably arrived for scrapping in any case.
15 March 1945 Oxford P9023 of 21 PAFU crashed on
take-off from Seighford.
9 April 1945 (09/04/45) Wellington X ME881 of 27 OTU was
wrecked in a forced landing at base following engine
failure. Pilot F/O S.E.Bourke RAAF and seven other crew
members were unhurt.
14 April 1945 Avro Lancaster X KB816 of 428 Squadron
overshot a forced landing at Church Broughton on return
from Kiel. No casualties.
16 April 1945 Vultee Vengeance TTIV HB456 crashed during
unauthorized aerobatics over Burton-upon-Trent. F/S W.
Saul was killed. Also killed on the ground were: Ivy Goy
(29), Elizabeth Banton (60), Edith Baker (25), Brian Baker
(20 months), Agnes Jones (59). Four others were injured.
22 April 1945 Beaufort ML687 of 12 PAFU flew into the
ground whilst making a single engine approach to Hixon
Aerodrome. F/S T W Johnson was killed.
30 April 1945 Lancaster X KB879 of 428 Squadron
disintegrated during a dive, possibly caused by the
explosion of an oxygen cylinder, wreckage landing near
Sandon. The crew, as follows, were all killed. F/L W G
Campbell RCAF, Sgt J H Kay RCAF, WO2 T D Lawley RCAF, F/S
S Berryman, F/S E J Wright RCAF, F/S J L Tweedy RCAF, F/S
W G Ward RAFVR. (F/S Wright was only 16 years old.)
11 May 1945 Beaufort ML628 of 12 PAFU had its port
undercarriage torn off when the aircraft developed a
swing on take-off from Hixon Aerodrome. No one was hurt.
15 May 1945 Beaufort ML652 of 12 PAFU was wrecked when it
was landed at Hixon with its undercarriage retracted. F/O
D J Followes was injured.
15 May 1945 Beaufort ML709 of 12 PAFU overshot
landing into No.2 site at Hixon Aerodrome where it caught
fire and also set fire to a living hut. F/O Fisher was
treated for shock.
23 May 1945 (23/05/45) Beaufort ML632 of 12 PAFU was on
approach to Hixon Aerodrome when a red flare was fired to
warn the pilot to go round again. A lag in response
from the port engine caused the aircraft to stall into the
ground. F/O G D Neame was seriously injured.
30 May 1945 Oxford NM482 of 1545 BAT Flight was engaged in
beam flying training at Halfpenny Green when it collided
with Anson DG799 which was landing. F/O J W Gooch (pilot),
F/Sgt S R Hawkins (pupil) were both killed. The
Anson also crashed, killing Sgt Oswald Teague and P/O
Goronwy Wyn Roberts.
13 June 1945 Whitley BD418 of 9 MU was damaged beyond
repair in a taxying accident at Cosford.
6 July 1945 Tiger Moth R4773 of 16 EFTS crashed on landing
at Church Greasley, near Burton upon Trent. Fate of pilot
10 November 1945 Mosquito RG204 of RCASU broke up in the
air following the failure of its starboard engine and
crashed near Wheaton Aston Airfield. The pilot, P/O J P M
van der Heijden was killed, the navigator bailed out
13 November 1945 Spitfire IX TD328 of 17 SFTS crash landed
on Hixon Aerodrome following engine failure.
28 November 1945 Tiger Moth R4849 of 28 EFTS stalled at
low altitude and crashed near Stafford. Fate of pilot
11 February 1946 Mosquito RG313 of 51 MU crashed near
Lichfield aerodrome following loss of control during a
slow roll at 3,000 feet. The pilot, F/Lt Mark Laicyo
George Dickens, and passenger LAC Richard George Dickens
1 August 1946 Oxford LW788 of 21 PAFU was on a night cross
country exercise from Wheaton Aston when it suffered a
failure of the port propeller and crashed out of control
at Huddlesford, near Lichfield. Pilot W/O Matthew Hamilton
Orr was killed as were 7 sheep in the field where the
26 November 1946 Oxford T1246 of 21 PAFU crashed half mile
south of Seighford in an attempted forced landing
following an engine failure.
9 September 1948 Mosquito RK945 of 51 MU was on a delivery
flight from Lichfield to Shawbury when an engine cut out.
An attempt at a forced landing was made at Brindley Heath,
but the aircraft broke up and the pilot, F/Lt Henry
Warwick of No. 4 Ferry Pool was killed.
19 September 1948 Mosquito TA507 of 51 MU crashed during a
low level turn at the Battle of Britain display at
Lichfield Aerodrome. F/Lt Hedley, pilot and S/L F G Shaw,
the unit’s Senior Equipment Officer were killed.
6 December 1948 Mosquito RG295 of 9 MU was wrecked when an
engine cut on take-off from Cosford. Pilot F/Lt Hank
Costain and fitter Sgt Thomas Hargreaves were unhurt.
13 February 1949 Balliol T2, VW897 was on a test flight
from Boulton and Paul in Wolverhampton when serious
control problems with elevator reversal were found at 320
knots. Speed was increased to 420 knots in a dive to
determine the effect that this would have, but the port
windscreen side panel disintegrated and the cockpit hood
burst open. Both pilots were incapacitated and the
aircraft dived into the ground out of control at Coven. Mr
Robin Lindsey Neal, 37 and Mr Peter Tisshaw, 25 were both
killed. Neal had been the company's test pilot during the
war and was involved with the development of the Boulton
14 April 1949 Wyvern TS384 crashed in forced landing at
Lichfield Aerodrome whilst undergoing tests with Rolls
Royce. The pilot was unhurt.
13 October 1952 Wellington X RP387 of 6 School of Air
Navigation crash landed and hit tree near Lichfield
Aerodrome. Sgt L Bahal and P/O C Cooke were injured, P/O
Francis Patrick Purcell was killed.
30 November 1952 Tiger Moth R5123 of 25 RFS hit a tree
while engaged in unauthorised low flying near Stafford,
injuring the pilot.
26 February 1953 (26/02/53) Miles Hawk G-AKMN belonging to
the Wolverhampton Aero Club took off from Wolverhampton
for a solo training flight to Wheaton Aston, but crashed
into a ploughed field on the outskirts of Wheaton Aston
aerodrome. The pilot, Geoffrey Harold Lloyd, was a
17 year old sergeant in the Air Training Corp and he died
from his injures. The aircraft was formerly Miles Magister
L5992 which had served with 12 OTU and the Air Transport
Auxilliary before being sold on 26/02/1948.