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Thread: April 17th 1930 a Busy Parachute Day ?

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    Default April 17th 1930 a Busy Parachute Day ?

    I have long known that Lieut. Yoshito Kobayashi (Japanese Officer attached R.A.F.) Imperial Japanese Naval Air Service bailed out of a Armstrong Whitworth Siskin J8861 at Hornchurch, Essex. on April 17th 1930

    This was after the aircraft caught fire in the air and the petrol tank exploded, Kobayashi sustained burns on his face and wrists, and also received injury to his left ankle through being dragged along the ground by the strong wind in his parachute. It was reported Kobayashi delayed jumping to steer his crippled aircraft away from some cottages.

    He was born in 1899 and was later a Naval Test pilot (he was involved in the development of the Zero) and was then a observer in Germany in 1941. He commanded the 253d Air Group based at Kavieng, 1942-43 Promoted to captain in May 1943, he was assigned to the Naval Air Arsenal in July of that year. In 1944 he was assigned to the Training Division of the Naval Aviation Department and ended the war as executive officer of the Yokosuka Air Group. He died in 1950.


    However, up until recently I had thought that another incident involving Fight Cadet Charles Eric Littler at Cranwell had occurred on April 10th 1930. But now I am not so sure.


    What I do know is .. That Littler bailed out of an unidentified Bristol Fighter at Cranwell, Lincs in April 1930. "Flight Cadet came out of cloud inverted and decided to jump.". AIR 10-1468 Report on Flying Accidents during Jan.-June 1930 Page 13 (iii) A pupil on a height test flew through a patch of cloud; got inverted and could not recover control: landed unhurt

    Irvin has this dated thus it its literature

    Flight Cadet C. E. Littler RAF, on 10th April 1930, was flying at Cranwell, Linconshire, in a Bristol Fighter when he got into an inverted spin, and being unable to correct it, he jumped out and landed safely with his Irvin Air Chute. Naturally he wished to join the Caterpillar Club and would have applied for membership of the Caterpillar Club, but the RAF requested him to wait, as a cadet had been killed at Cranwell the week before, and public knowledge of air accidents has an appreciable effect on future entries:

    "The accident the week before is this one"

    DH9A on 1st April 1930
    PILOT KILLED CRASH.
    SOLE OCCUPANT OF A D.H. 9a
    The Air Ministry announces that as the result of an accident at Cranwell (Sleaford) to D-H.9a machine, of the Royal Air Force College, Cranwell, to-day, Flight-Cadet William Henry Hodgkinson, the pilot, and sole occupant was killed. He was aged 21 and from Amersham, Bucks,

    This was D-H.9a J8159

    However two separate news stories from local newspapers (see below) have lead me to believe the date is wrong, the Stamford Mercury has always been printed on a Friday, so it is conceivable that they are meaning the "previous Thursday" but the Boston Guardian is published on a Saturday and it definitely says "Thursday Afternoon". i.e 17th April" so why would they wait a week to publish the story..

    Anyway (has anyone of a Bristol Fighter write off for any of these two dates) - As far as making the national news it seems only the Kobayashi incident was worthy of reporting


    Friday 18 April 1930 , Stamford Mercury , Lincolnshire, England
    CRANWELL AERO CRASH.
    Pilotís Parachute Descent from the Clouds.
    While flying a Bristol Fighter machine at Cranwell on Thursday afternoon Flight-Cadet C. E. Littler had a wonderful escape. The was machine put into an inverted spin, , and the pilot, failing in his attempt to right it took to his parachute at altitude of about 2000 feet and made a safe landing. The machine crashed in a field just outside the Aerodrome and was badly damaged. Flight-Cadet Littler who is a promising pilot, was none the worse for his experience.

    Boston Guardian - Saturday 19 April 1930 - Page 8 Which would make it April 17th 1930:
    CRASH AT CRANWELL
    While flying a Bristol Fighter machine at Cranwell on Thursday afternoon of which he was was the pilot and sole occupant Flight-Cadet C. E. Littler had a remarkable escape. The was machine put into an inverted spin, and after every effort to right the 'plane had failed, the cadet took to his parachute at altitude of approximately 2,000 feet from the ground and made a safe landing. The machine, which crashed close to the aerodrome was badly damaged. Flight-Cadet Littler was little the worse for his experience.


    Littler was gazetted as P/O on 26th July 1930 #26159 and was killed as Wing Commander Mar. 30, 1941 flying Wellingtons of 103 Sqn when R1043 crashed near Yeovil, Somerset during an attempted emergency landing.. He had to bank steeply to avid hitting a house. and his aircraft hit a tree. His crew of 5 were injured
    Last edited by paulmcmillan; 5th June 2017 at 14:54.

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