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Thread: Flimwell (in Ticehurst Parish) Bf109

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    Default Flimwell (in Ticehurst Parish) Bf109

    Very helpful that I now have:

    9.9.1940 MESSERSCHMITT Bf 109. ?Rosemary Farm, Ticehurst.
    However is it the
    same loss as…
    9.9.1940 Bf 109E W/n 6316 7/JG 3 Coopers Field, Flimwell, Sussex SDF

    ??

    Any ideas please

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    Default

    I don't have any stats on this but I used to live in Hawkhurst a couple of miles away. The boundary of Ticehurst and Flimwell is very sketchy so It could easily be so. had a quick look at http://www.battleofbritain1940.net/0038.html but couldn't see anything. There used to be a good aviation historical society in Etchingham a few miles away. Sorry I do not have a contact.
    Had a quick look at OS map Landranger 188 Maidstone & The Weald of Kent:
    Rosemary Farmhouse is 1.5 km NWW of Flimwell on the edge of Bewl Water
    Rosemary Farmhouse is 2km NNE of Ticehurst
    Must be the same aircraft.... probably...
    Happy hunting
    James

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    Default Ticehurst/Flimwell Bf109

    Yes cheers James.
    I was aware that Flimwell was within Ticehurst parish, and I have spoken to Vic Catt of Etchingham Aviation Society. It was in fact Vic that recalled that the Bf109 had submerged in a bog, guns ablaze!
    But its the confusion now caused by the fact that a P51 in 1944 also crashed somewhere near here that makes me think Vic might be thinking of that.
    I dont know how to contact Anddy Saunders as I'm sure he'd have the answer.
    Thanks anyhow,
    Dave

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    I have asked for Andys comments on this.....

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    Default Flimwell Bf109E

    Dave,

    Both your reports refer to the same aircraft. The RAF A.I.1.(g) Report gives the location as 'Rosemary Farm, Kildown (sic), 9 miles east of Tunbridge Wells' while the A.I.1.(k) Report states 'Coopers Field, Flimwell, 4 or 5 miles W. of Hawkhurst'. However, Special Constable No.223 Percy Hall of Ticehurst Station reported it down at 'Pillary Farm, Lamberhurst ... 200 yards over the Kent Boundary'. So you 'pays your money & takes your choice' as they say. Irrespective of the exact location, the Bf109E in question made a good belly-landing and was later transported to RAE Farnborough for inspection so not submerged in a bog, guns ablaze. Nice story though.

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    I think there is a Pillary Lane on the left hand side of the A21 as you drive north from Flimwell. This would match the location too.
    James

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    Andy Saunders has got back to me...


    "The only 109 at the site of Bewlbridge Reservoir was Massman's aeroplane on 9 September 1940. He made a forced landing and there is no "109 submerged in a bog" anywhere near there. I think there may be some confusion with Ralph Hope's 605 Squadron nearby as that WAS submerged in a bog! I can answer all the other questions in this thread (I think!) but it will have to wait until I get back from France on Saturday. "

    BTW He is not a member of RAFCommands yet but says he will sign up....

    Ralph Hope's bailed out of Hurricane P3828 on 28th Sept 1940 and as Andy says chrashed at Bewl Bridge, Lamberhurst, Kent

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    Default Bog wood

    I spoke to a man last night with good local connections, esp. with the late Bob Reeves, who at the time was at Ovaries farm (next door to Rosemary farm).

    He said (from what Bob had said) that the Bf109 (btw thats FAIRLY nr Pillary Corner, now a picnic area on the A21), force landed by 'Bog wood'. Bog wood is now under the water, just 1/4 M. West of the Rosemary lane bridge. He found the pilot (who Andy now kindly asserted was 'Massman') smoking a cigarette upon the wing. Bob somehow I was told managed to pinch the maps from this aircraft (but later handed them in).

    Perhaps therefore what Vic Catt (whos now 86 btw) refers to is simply that the 109 guns went off as the 109 filled with water. I found from bitter experince that mud around this area, in places, is indeed like quicksand! which may have hampered the recovery.

    Thanks very much to everyone.

    I took it (from Andy) that the P51 WAS under Bewl, nearby somewhere.

    Apart from the Hope Hurricane, that was excavated to the North (Lamberhust) it leaves a Norwegian Spitfire IX however, of 332sqn, which ALSO POSSIBLY crashed at Ticehurst after an engine failure, flying out on training of Bognor ALG, in 1944. It was flown by a pilot named Isachsen. But 'NO-ONE' has heard of that loss locally at least!

    Dave
    Last edited by uckwash; 9th September 2009 at 09:56. Reason: .....

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    Default Ticehurst Bf 109

    I grew up at Overys Farm Ticehurst where my grandfather farmed and next door was Rosemary Farm, just inside the Kent border, the River Bewl being the border. This valley is now flooded by Bewl Water (resevoir). Rosemary was farmed by an aunt and uncle. The family (Reeves) still farm both (2013). Although I was not born until 1947 I have some second hand knowledge of this incident from my uncle FJ (Bill) Reeves who was aged about 12 or 13 and at Overys Farm at the time. Sadly he has since died. I think the reference to Bob Reeves may be a mistake and that the name should be Bill Reeves who died about 20 years ago. I gave the eulogy at his funeral at Ticehurst and this incident was mentioned in it. I knew of no Bob Reeves who worked on the farm. Certainly it was said that Bill got to the crash site first and removed a map that he was made to hand over. Another tale says that he accompanied the soldiers who went to the crash site which I understand was in the area slightly east of Hill Field and to the north of Bog Wood, just in Kent. I understood that in the rush to get there Bill carried the rifle for one of the soldiers. I suspect that the latter story is correct. Bog Wood was always a quagmire - the last time I lost a boot in it was just before the resevoir was flooded in the 1970s!
    My grandfather told be of another incident in 1940 when a German bomber was persued over the farm by two fighters. One was hit and crashed at Bewl Bridge Farm, Lamberhurst and the other came down near Marden I think. Not a good day! Incidentily almost the first bombs to fall on the mainland in the spring of 1940 fell not far away at Ticehurst killing one donkey and about 26 chickens! By the end of the war almost every house in the parish had some damage, many from V1s. Ticehurst ws said to have had more bombs dropped on it than any other. Overys Farmhouse taking a near miss. The remains of the V1 that fell in the hopgarden near the house lay in the River Bewl for years afterwards. Just opposite Bog Wood!
    Last edited by Simon Lloyd; 21st April 2013 at 09:32. Reason: addition

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