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Thread: F/O Charles Hugh Rudgard Little killed Gamecock Crash 1st April 1931

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    Default F/O Charles Hugh Rudgard Little killed Gamecock Crash 1st April 1931

    F/O Charles Hugh Rudgard Little is one of my prewar bale outs. He baled out of Avros 504N J8774 of 3 FTS on 10th January 1930 at Grantham, Lincs when he had to abandoned the aircraft when during aerobatics, the control column jammed

    He was later killed Gamecock Crashed on 1st April 1931 in a field near Stroud Green, Essex. He was with the RAF Armament and Gunnery School, Eastchurch Kent

    Can anyone ID the Gamecock?

    Many Thanks

    Paul

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    Hi Paul, it looks like J8073 of AGS which ABS lists as crashing at Rochford, Essex, but on the 31/3/31.

    regards
    DaveW

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    Dave thanks interesting i think he was on his way to help another pilot who forced landed in field "the previous day" I wonder if this is that incident though it appears that force landing was not severe. I wonder if this has caused the confusion on dates two incident being mixed up. He crashed into same field that forced landed plane was in.

    Of course story could be confused and he flying out forced landed aircraft. I will see if I can dig out anything else

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    Hi Paul,
    The Armament and Gunnery School was issued with J8033, J8072 and J8088.
    J8073 (also J8085, 8088, 8413) was operated by the Home Communication Flight.
    Mojmir

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    Paul, I take it you have seen the Times account?

    Following on Mojmir's contribution I have looked again at the J File and it records that J8088 was on charge to AGS and 'crashed', no date , but after 11/1930.

    DaveW

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    Times Account:

    The Times, Tuesday, Apr 02, 1931; pg. 7;

    R.A.F. OFFICER KILLED
    CRASN IN ESSEX FIELD
    Flying Officer Charles Hugh Rudgard Little,
    24 of the R.A.F. Armament and Gunnery School, Eastchurch, Kent, was killed yesterday morning when his single-seater Gamecock crashed in a feld near Stroud Green, Essex
    It is stated that he was flying over to assist in the removal of the machine, which piloted by Flying Officer H. L. Patch, of the same aerodrome made a forced landing at Rochford on Tuesday night. The latter aeroplane was in charge, during Tuesday night, of aircraftmen from Eastchurch, who came over by lorry to cooperate in the removal of the machine, and they said that Mr. Litte' aeroplane suddenly crashed when at a height of 400ft. The scene of the crash is near the site of a large aerodrome which was in use during the War.
    Last edited by paulmcmillan; 26th September 2012 at 09:27.

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    OK here is a better account of this incident

    Wed 01 Apr 1931, Hull Daily Mail, East Riding of Yorkshire, England

    ANOTHER R.A.F. OFFICER KILLED
    Engine Buried in Ground in Crash
    FELL LIKE A STONE
    OFFICER LITTLE, aged 24, of Eastchurch R.A.F. Aerodrome Kent, was killed to-day when he crashed a blue Gamecock fighter a field off Rectory-road, Rochford, Essex. In the next field, about 200 yards away, was the single-seater aeroplane which being, piloted yesterday Flight-Lieut Patch when he had make a forced landing. It is believed tbat Flying Officer Little was attempting come to his colleague's assistance. His 'plane was completely smashed, and death is believed to have been instantaneous. The machine did not catch fire, but the petrol tank was broken and the grass all round was saturated with petrol.
    EYE-WITNESS' S ACCOUNT
    Flight-Lieut. Patch stated to-day that he had no idea that Little had been sent to his assistance. A lorry load of R.A.F. engineers arrived last night to repair the conrod of his his 'plane, which had been damaged yesterday when flying over Southend pier, he had no indication from Little as to whether he was going to land, although he circled over the field several times. The engine of Little's 'plane was buried about a foot in the ground. The propellor was completely out sight and both wings were smashed. eye-witness of the crash, Mr Brady chauffeur to Mr James Tabor, of The Lawn, Rochford, said to a Mail reporter, saw the 'plane flying fairly low over the field and watched to see what was going to happen. I knew that a 'plane had been there all night and I wondered whether the other one was going to its assistance. After circling several times the 'plane apparently tried to rise. It seemed to bang motionless in the air for second and then crashed to the ground like stone. The field was cleared of spectators, no one being allowed near the wrecked machine, and Little's body was taken to Rochford mortuary.

    Thnaks to all it looks like J8073 and the AB date is out by 1 day - The other aircraft can be seen from account above had a broken conrod.

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