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Beaufort L4468 Crashed 1939 or 1940?

Beaufort L4468 Crashed 1939 or 1940?
Author: mcmillan_p
Time Stamp:
14:15:10 Wednesday, April 27, 2005
Post:
Posted to RAF Commands from AB-IX to maximise opportunities for information.

This was the subject of a query in the Autumn 2004 Issue of

Aeromilitaria in respect to UK Crashes

The article in Aeromilitaria says

"Beaufort L4468 does not appear in the listing as the Air Ministry recorded it as crashing in the Severn off Avonmouth. However, Air- Britain's Flight Testing Accidents book says 'Cribb's Causeway' which was about a mile west of the then existing Filton airfield and two miles inland. Wings over Gloucester says it was lost on 20.12.39 and the pilot, Flt Lt Aird Arthur Deacon, was killed and his body washed up at Avonmouth. The CWWG site gives his date of death as 24.11.39. Some unravelling seems to be required for this one."

Now I have done a bit of unravelling:

Firstly Air-Britain's Flight Testing Accidents has this accident in early 1940 (sorry I do not have the date to hand but believed around April 1940) and the pilot was un-identified.

However Gloucestershire Aircraft Accidents

http://www.rcawsey.fsnet.co.uk/glos1.htm has the following

20.12.39 L4468 Beaufort I, Bristol Flying School, Crashed in river on test flight, River Severn

(I assume this info is from the Wings over Gloucester book)

Now the problem is if Deacon was the pilot of L4468 then the CWGC gives his date of death as 24.11.39. In fact Deacon's death was announced in The Times of 18.12.39 (as killed on active service) so he has to have been killed before the 20.12.39 date above.

Therefore a couple of questions:

Was Deacon the pilot of L4468 that crashed on 24.11.39? If he was the Wings over Gloucester book and Air Britrain Flight Testing accidents are both in-correct for the date of the accident to this aircraft

If Deacon was not the pilot of L4468 who was and what date did she crash 20.12.39 or the 1940's date in the Air Britain Book, and what aircraft was he piloting on the 24.11.39?

Regards

Paul McMillan



RE: Beaufort L4468 Crashed 1939 or 1940?
Author: DaveW (Guest)
Time Stamp:
16:08:03 Wednesday, April 27, 2005
Post:
Hi Paul, thanks for your analysis. It was me that raised the query with AB in the first place. I may have found a partial solution to the anomolies in the dates of Deacon's death in that the Battle File lists L5256 in collision at Penrhos and 'P/O A A Dean'killed on 24/11/39. I suggest that this is a typo for 'Deacon' as 'Dean' does not appear on CWG listing.

Furthermore 'Wings over Glos' lists L4468 on 20/12/39, Bristol Flying School' (sic). F/Lt Deacon k, body washed up at Avonmouth.

and another: Beaufort, of BAC, serial unknown, at Cribbs Causeway 18/04/40, the same date as is listed in Flight Testing Accidents, and adds 'no casualties'.

I think that Aird Arthur Deacon is the officer killed at Penrhos. I had wondered why a Canadian airman, killed in the West Country would have been taken to Wallasey for burial.

Could the Deacon at Avonmouth have been an ex serviceman?

If anything else occurs to you, please post again.

Regards DaveW


RE: Beaufort L4468 Crashed 1939 or 1940?
Author: Ross_McNeill
Time Stamp:
22:28:14 Wednesday, April 27, 2005
Post:
Hi All,

Just to further muddy the waters...

41346 was issued to a Pilot Officer Allan Arthur Deacon, commissioned 6th November 1938. The first names are repeated on both the AIr Force List and the London Gazette. The CWGC seems to be the only reference to Aird.

The officers in the 4134* sequence seem to have made F/O in 6th May or June 1940. Again the CWGC gives his rank as F/Lt in November 1939.

I have no refernce to a P/O A A Dean being commissioned before November 1939.

Regards

Ross



RE: Beaufort L4468 Crashed 1939 or 1940?
Author: mcmillan_p
Time Stamp:
14:09:38 Thursday, April 28, 2005
Post:
When I discovered that Deacon was Canadian, I consulted 'They Shall Not Grow Old' it confirms he died in a Battle collison on 24/11/1939. So he was piloting either:

24.11.39 Battle I L5255 9 AOS 4m NNW of Penrhos Coil

24.11.39 Battle I L5256 9 AOS 4m NNW of Penrhos Coil

I will now need to confirm his first name (in the same book)

Prehaps there are more than one "Deacon's" which is causing the problem.. Especially due to the difference in Rank......

Further info from AB-IX

a) There may be some confusion with another accident mentioned in "Wings over Gloucestershire": on 18.4.40 at 10:00 a Beaufort of Bristol Aeroplane Company crashed at Cribbs Causeway, pilot & passengers safe. - could this have been L4468 ?

b) Cribbs Causeway (where I do my shopping!) is a significant distance from anywhere which could be described as the River Severn. The two could not be confused, so two separate accidents are likely.



RE: Beaufort L4468 Crashed 1939 or 1940?
Author: mcmillan_p
Time Stamp:
14:59:10 Thursday, April 28, 2005
Post:
If there was a crash from the 'Bristol Flying School' in December 1939 then we are probably looking for an Anson, Hart, Tiger Moth or Dominie

http://www.filton.flyer.co.uk/bristolfc2.htm

http://www.filton.flyer.co.uk/bristolfc3.htm