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Thread: A/Cdre D J Waghorn

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    Default A/Cdre D J Waghorn

    Hi All

    A/Cdre Waghorn was killed flying Spitfire XIX, PS831 on 1 Apr 1945. One source quotes this occurring at Boscombe Down but I have now been advised this could have happened at Benson. Can anyone confirm the location of the incident?

    Malcolm

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    Hi Malcolm, his death's registered in Salisbury, so Boscombe Down it seems to be...

    Tom

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    Thanks Tom

    I should have thought of checking that.

    Malcolm

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    Sky Spy - Ray Holmes. After a visit to Benson Air Commodore Waghorn 'sent his staff car back by road, with one opf our pilots in it. He said he would borrow one of our Spitfires to fly himself back to base........... At the Runway there was no delay. The aerodrome duty pilot knew who was at the controls, and gave him priority overa Mosquito from 543 trying to get down after a railway marshalling yards sortie in the Ruhr. Open went the throttles of both the Spitfire & and the Mosquito as one took off and the other went round again. The Mosquito brought his whells & flaps up, and with the speed he already had, quickly overhauled the single-engined machine now with its tailup and just getting airborne.
    Suddenly we found ourselves staring, aghast.
    Instead of holding down his nose, and letting speed build up to about 140 for the climb, the AOC was treating the Spitfire like a Tiger Moth. No sooner was he airborne then he hauled it into a steep left-hand climbing turn. He was still within the aerodrome boundary, and if he intended to make a spectacular departure he certainly achieved his object. The lower wing flicked under in a high-loading stall, the top wing rolled in the start of a spin, and before the machine had spun even half a turn it had dived inverted into the ground and burst into flames.
    The burning wreckage was in a field less than 500 yds. beyond the runway but was practically burned out when the fire tender crashed through the gedge to it. the AOC, flung out by the impact. lay a few feet from one smouldering wing. He was not burned, but was dead.'

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    Thanks John

    I suspect the visit was to Boscombe rather than Benson as his HQ was at Benson and that is where he would have been flying back to and an error was made in the printing of the book.

    Is anybody able to confirm?

    Malcolm

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    Not to sure about this one Malcolm.

    The write up talks about aircraft on Ops which would not be Boscombe.

    I had a possible identity for pilot of PS831 (crash is not mentioned in the ORB) as F/L J H L Richards but his death is registed in Cirencester.

    The aircraft was SOC rather than declared Cat E immediately.

    I'm not confident of Richards as the pilot but if AOC was the pilot that crashed at Benson it would seem that his body was brought back to Boscombe before being registered with the local coronor.

    All very strange.

    I suppose the death certificates of both men and the Form 78/1180 for PS831 may narrow it down.

    Regards
    Ross
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    Could Richards have been in Mosquito MM328 (PRDU) which crashed at Southrop?

    DaveW

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    RAF Benson ORB says that:

    A/Cdre D.J. Waghorn AFC, AOC No.106 (PR) Group, crashed at Boscombe Down in Spitfire PS831, and was killed.

    Best Regards

    Andy Fletcher
    Per Speculationem Impellor ad Intelligendum

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    F/L J.L.H. Richards was the pilot of Mosquito PR.XVI MM328. His passenger F/O W.E. Robinson was an electrical officer. They were carrying out a test flight of a GEC Auto Pilot.

    Source: RAF Benson ORB

    Best Regards

    Andy Fletcher
    Per Speculationem Impellor ad Intelligendum

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    Thanks Andy

    That's exactly what I was looking for

    Malcolm

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