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Thread: Unidentified Hurricane crash at Ingatestone, Essex 1320 31st August 1940

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    Default Unidentified Hurricane crash at Ingatestone, Essex 1320 31st August 1940

    According to Essex County Council ARP Records a Hurrcane aircraft crashed and burnt out at 1320 on 31 August 1940 at Ray Farm, Ingatestone, Essex.

    I have been trying for some time to identify the aircraft and its pilot who was said to have baled out safely, but without success despite scouring likely ORBs of squadrons in action in the area at the time.

    Does anyone know the identity of the aircraft or have suggestions where to take my research next please?

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    Hi Andy,
    I know that Bonseigneur of 257 squadron crashed near ingatestone on september 3rd 1940.
    This is the only one I can think of although the dates clearly don't match.
    Gerry

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    Hello Andy & Gerry,
    From FCL vol 1 revised.
    Hurricane 31/08/1940
    1 Sqdn - 5.
    56 Sqdn - 4.
    79 Sqdn - 4.
    85 Sqdn - 2.
    111 Sqdn - 1.
    151 Sqdn - 2.
    253 Sqdn - 2.
    257 Sqdn - 2.
    310 Sqdn - 2.
    501 Sqdn - 1.
    601 Sqdn - 4.
    Total = 29.

    Also this date were
    Battle 12 Otu - L5283.
    Roc - 759 SqnFAA - L3115 (2 +).
    Spitfires
    19 Sqn - 3.
    54 Sqn - 4.
    72 Sqn - 2.
    222 Sqn - 2.
    603 Sqn - 2.

    Alex
    Last edited by Alex Smart; 22nd July 2017 at 20:19.

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    Thanks chaps. I shall do some more digging and see if could be any of those listed.

    Andy

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    Hello Andy,
    Please note that as the a/c seems to be definitely identified as a Hurricane, I only gave single engined a/c in my list.
    There were Biplanes and multi engined a/c that day also.
    I did not include (if any) those from Training Units which are a little more difficult to find.
    Good hunting
    Alex

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    A possible contender would be P3159 which was originally thought to have crashed at Wennington Church, Romford.

    http://www.bbm.org.uk/airmen/Sterbacek.htm, this site says that subsequent investigations have put R4125 as being the a/c here, leaving P3159 as 'missing'. It is worth noting that BoBT&N puts the time of the loss of these a/c as 1.30 and 1.35 respectively.

    DaveW

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    Hi Andy,

    Thanks for that great information on precise time and location. As I understand it Steracek and P3159 were shot down into the sea during combat over the Thames Estuary. Both are still missing.

    I would look at two Hurricanes from 601 Squadron; N2602 (Sgt. A.W. Woolley) lost at 1.35 p.m. and V7260 (P/O H.T. Gilbert) lost at 1.40 p.m. during combat off Gravesend/over the Thames Estuary. I cannot find a location given for either crash. Both pilots are said to have baled out and both their aircraft are said to have 'crashed and burned out'. Where ?
    There is a newly-released AIR 81 Casualty File covering the loss of N2602 (AIR 81/2960) which I have not seen. It will almost certainly have the crash location of this Hurricane. I cannot find any AIR 81 file for V7260 in the index (recently and generously put up on this board by Paul McMillan), probably because its pilot was not injured.

    Can anyone take this further ?

    Martin Gleeson.

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    Hello Martin,
    Re N2602 and V7260.
    AB Serial qbooks has "shot down off Gravesend for both a/c.
    "Off Gravesend".
    This suggests that they both went into the sea ?
    Alex

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    Hello,
    From the time given.
    We have the following -
    1300 - P3166 - 85 - S/d over Tunbridge, pilot baled injured.
    1305 - P3115 - 253 - Over Durham, Kent, pilot baled burned.
    1315 - V6545 - 501 - Over Gravesend, baled burned.
    1330 - P3159 - 310 - S/d over Thames Estuary, pilot KNG.
    1330 - P3735 - 601 - Over Gravesend, pilot baled.
    1330 - P8814 - 310 - Bailed over Thames Estuary.
    1330 - V6581 - 85 - Baled, wia over Tunbridge.
    1340 - V7260 - 601 - Baled safe over Thames Estuary.
    Others with no time given in FCL are-
    L1835 - 253 - Pilot killed in chute , s/d over Grove Ferry, Kent.
    N2602 - 601 - S/d off Gravesend, pilot baled burned.
    P3312 - 151 - Baled burned nr Southend.
    R4215 - 601 - Over Gravesend, pilot baled . 1984 recovery of pilot and a/c.
    V7378 - 56 - S/d over Colchester, pilot KNG.

    Alex

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    Thanks everyone for all your assistance on this.

    Having gone through a process of elimnation I've now reached the conclusion that the most likely candidate for the aircraft was V7260 of 601 Squadron, flown by Pilot Officer Humprey Trench Gilbert. The rationale for that is set out below, with my comments appended in bold to Alex's most recent post:

    1300 - P3166 - 85 - S/d over Tunbridge, pilot baled injured - disregard a too early, pilot injured (Townsend), crash site confirmed as Goudhurst, Kent
    1305 - P3115 - 253 - Over Durham, Kent, pilot baled burned.- disregard as too early, pilot injured (Gleave), crash site confirmed as Cudham Kent
    1315 - V6545 - 501 - Over Gravesend, baled burned. - disregard as too early, pilot injured (Glowacki)
    1330 - P3159 - 310 - S/d over Thames Estuary, pilot KNG. - disregard a pilot killed (Štěrbáček), crash site confirmed as Wennington, Essex
    1330 - P3735 - 601 - Over Gravesend, pilot baled. - disregard as combat report for pilot (Taylor) (AIR 50 165 40) confirms crash site as River Thames note combat was over Rayleigh-Leigh-Brentwood
    1330 - P8814 - 310 - Bailed over Thames Estuary. - disregard as crash site suspected as Aveley, Essex note pilot Kredba unhurt, no combat report
    1330 - V6581 - 85 - Baled, wia over Tunbridge. - disregard pilot injured (Worrall), as crash site confirmed as Newenden, Kent
    1340 - V7260 - 601 - Baled safe over Thames Estuary. - best candidate as pilot baled out uninjured (Gilbert) note discrepancy over time between FCL (1340), ARP Records (1320) and ORB (1330). ORB (AIR 27/2068/16) has Gilbert in P2949 but that aircraft was in action after 31 Aug 1940. ORB Summary (AIR 27/2068/15) states “P/O Gilbert’s Hurricane was shot down in flames but the pilot escaped by parachute and was unhurt.” There is no combat report for this sortie by Gilbert, though there is one for the morning sortie where he claimed a 'kill.'
    Others with no time given in FCL are-
    0825 - L1835 - 253 - Pilot killed in chute , s/d over Grove Ferry, Kent. - disregard as too early (0825), pilot killed (Starr)
    1335 - N2602 - 601 - S/d off Gravesend, pilot baled burned. - disregard as pilot injured (Woolley)
    1330 - P3312 - 151 - Baled burned nr Southend. - disregard as pilot injured (Ellacombe), crash site confirmed as Eastwood, Essex
    1335 - R4215 - 601 - Over Gravesend, pilot baled . 1984 recovery of pilot and a/c. - disregard as pilot killed (Doulton)
    0845 - V7378 - 56 - S/d over Colchester, pilot KNG. - disregard as too early (0845), pilot killed (Weaver), crash site confirmed as Osea Island, Essex

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