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Thread: Wellington of 149 Sqn crashed just before the start of WWII

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    Default Wellington of 149 Sqn crashed just before the start of WWII

    Hello,

    On 24th or 29th August 1939, a 149 Sqn Wellington from Mildenhall, captained by Canadian FWS Turner crashed somewhere in Eastern England. Sgt A Freeman, the observer, lost his life and there may be others killed or injured. Could someone give me any further details about this crash please? Thank you

    Norman
    Last edited by namrondooh; 1st August 2011 at 09:29. Reason: additinal info

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    Hi Norman

    I have Freeman as a possible for Wellington, L4217 of No 99 Sqn, which crashed on take off from Mildenhall on 29 Aug. No others listed

    Malcolm
    Last edited by malcolm_raf; 1st August 2011 at 12:08. Reason: date added

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    Norman,

    There is another possibility.

    No.149 Sqn. Wellington I L4257.. Dived into the sea 5m SE of Happisburgh Light Vessel 29-8-1939.

    I don't like it, but it needs consideration until eliminated.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 1st August 2011 at 13:09.

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    There is a brief mention of the incident in the Times of the 31st August and puts the accident on the previous Tuesday which would date it as 29th; additionally Freeman's death is registered at Newmarket.
    You could consider L4274 which caught fire and force/crash landed at Newmarket on the 28th, if towards midnight it would explain the difference in dates.

    regards

    DaveW

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    There's a brief mention of the crash in the 149 squadron history, "Strong by Night" which mentions the aircraft, Wellington L4214, the fact that the forced landing happened at Brandon and that Sgt A F Freeman later died of his injuries at the sick quarters at Mildenhall. Strangely it doesn't mention the date other than it happenend in August 1939.
    A much fuller report which looks like it's from the inquest, including a photograph of Sgt Freeman can be found here:
    http://www.brandonatwar.co.uk/plane_crash.htm

    Hope this helps

    Dave

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    Default 580726 Sgt Anthony FREEMAN, RAF

    Sgt Freeman died in a crash near Brandon in Norfolk just 4 days before war was declared, 29th August 1939. He is buried in Newmarket. Although I have details of the inquest, I cannot find the aircraft or squadron. With a crew of 6 and him the rear gunner (the only fatality), it seems more than likely it was a Wellington. The RAF had not moved into Newmarket by that date, but his body was first taken to Mildenhall. Any clue welcomed

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    Default Sgt Freeman

    I just started another query ,not having seen this thread.
    www.brandonatwar.co.ukdoes carry an account of the inquest but does not mention the aircraft or squadron. Sgt Freeman is buried in Newmarket cemetery, near the war graves section, His headstone is a private one, the CWGC pattern with the notches cut out on top corners. Hopefully we can establish which aircraft and squadron he was with. The exact date given at the inquest and on his headstone is 29th August 1939

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    Cannot supply details of aircraft but it was with 149 Sqn so was a Wellington
    Pilot Officer Thomas Watson was serverly injured
    Last edited by paulmcmillan; 20th October 2011 at 12:41.

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    May possibly have been 99 Squadron Wellington I L4217 which is listed in RAF AIRCRAFT L1000-N9999 as
    'Engine cut on take-off; overshot and hit barn, Mildenhall, 29.8.39; DBF'
    Ian Macdonald

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    Adding to my previous post; 149 Squadron had been reformed from B Flight of 99 Squadron so could it have been possible that some 149 personnel records still listed them with 99?

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