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Thread: Spitfire's P8658 & P8568 query

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    Default Spitfire's P8658 & P8568 query

    Hi all, Im looking into these aircraft's histories for a friend and could anyone tell me any more. P8658, I believe, was a presentation aircraft from Morley, Leeds and carried the name and is our interest.

    Both histories are slightly confusing as both appear damaged on the same day at the same place in Kent. Both were MkIIb, both with Merlin XII engines and built at Castle Bromwich. What I have is...

    P8658, arrived 24MU on 11th May 41, then to 616 Sqdn on 25th May 41. Controls jammed on return from sweep, force landed, crashed at Heathfield, Kent on 14th July 1941 (and from info on this forum some years ago Pilot, Richardson, unhurt). SOC 22 July 1941.
    Ive also a note that this aircraft may have also been with 610 Sqn, 15 Sqn, 266 Sqn, 124 Sqn, then to 58 OTU and ending up at 61 OTU before being SOC on 2 Nov 44. "Morley" presentation aircraft.

    P8568, arrived 12MU on 25th May 41, then to 118 Sqdn on 22nd June 1941. Engine failed and force landed and overturned nr Heathfield, Kent on 14th July 1941. Here the problem begins, its the same date and location given for P8658. Is this correct, or as I think, too much of a coincidence. P8568 I have as being repaired, then to 53 OTU, 51 OTU before being SOC on 13 Nov 44. This was "City of Stoke on Kent I" aircraft.

    Has anyone researched this incident at Heathfield to be able to comment on which aircraft this was please or can anyone add any more information please?

    Thanks, Rich Allenby

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    Hi Rich
    I think the answer lies in the similarity of the numbers, reverse the middle digits and one becomes the other.
    For P 8568, Air Britain Serials has it with 118/132/53 OTU/61 OTU SOC 23/11/44
    For P8658, they have it with 616/610, Engine cut on return from a sweep,hit hedge and overturned in forced landing 3 mls E of Heathfield, Kent. 14/7/41. They have this recorded as donated by the Borough of Morley.
    http://www.spitfires.ukf.net/p008.htm has them both coming to grief at Heathfield!! on different dates and force landing for different reasons.P8568 they have as repaired and issued to 132 Sqn. P8658 written off on 22/2/41 after force-landing on 14/7/41
    Regards
    Dick
    Last edited by Dick; 27th January 2009 at 21:36.

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    Dick, many thanks for your reply, yes I also think theres been some confusion with the two similar serial numbers but I would suggest it is too much of a coincidence for both to crash land at the same place on the same date on 14th July 1941.

    Are there any Kent reseachers who have the answer?

    regards Rich

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    Same date - Different aircraft

    P8656 named "NIPPY" 234 Sqn, Engine failed force landed undercarriage retracted on rough ground West Knighton, Dorset , cat.3 on 14.7.41 (18:20), Sgt AS Parker 958877

    P8658 named "BOROUGH of MORLEY" 610.Sqn: controls jammed, forcelanded/crashlanded Heathfield, Kent 14.7.41. Sgt RW RICHARDSON injured
    Last edited by paulmcmillan; 28th January 2009 at 16:47.

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    Paul and Dennis, many thanks for this information, I will pass both on to my friend, much appreciated. Rich

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