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  #1  
Old 08-04-2013, 12:32 AM
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Default Spitfire mid-air collision Warkworth 1943

The Acklington RAF Station Record Book records a mid-air collision of two Spitfire aircraft near Warkworth, on the 17th March 1943. Acklington sent their fire tender and ambulance , but the planes were from Eshott, So the Acklington book does not go into much detail:

"A message was received from H.Q. 13 Group at 1418 hours saying that 2 Spitfires had collided in mid-air and had crashed in flames near Warkworth. The ambulance and fire tender departed to the scene. These aircraft belonged to Eshott who took all necessary action and arranged for the removal of the bodies."


Cannot find much on the internet on this event. There's one Czech airman in Chevington cemetery of 57 O.T.U., with the above date of death.
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Old 24-04-2013, 08:05 PM
Graeme Graeme is offline
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Sgt Ladislaw KOROUREK (787343) (Czech) in Spitfire Mk.I X4266 from 57 OTU, RAF Eshott, collided in mid-air with Spitfire Mk.I AR222. Korourek was killed when possibly trying to attempt a forced-landing at Broderick Farm (sic), Warkworth in his damaged aircraft. It went through a hedgerow and as it did so, the cockpit section apparently broke free of the airframe, leaving the pilot's body on top of the hedge. The farmer, Mr Foster, later helped RAF personnel dig out the aircraft's Merlin engine which had buried itself ten feet down.

The mention of "Broderick Farm" presumably relates to Brotherwick.

Sgt Korourek is buried at Chevington and his grave would have been the one you saw.

AR222 crashed nearby and was destroyed by fire. An RAF recovery team - possibly from No.83 Maintenance Unit, RAF Woolsington (now Newcastle Airport), removed the wreckage from both crash sites.

Both X4266 and AR222 would have been fairly "clapped-out" Spits, having long been relegated from front-line duties (which by 1943 would have been flying Spitfire Mk.XIs).

Graeme
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Old 25-04-2013, 11:28 AM
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Many thanks Graeme, most interesting (and tragic).
Any info on the other pilot?


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Old 25-04-2013, 05:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graeme View Post
Sgt Ladislaw KOROUREK (787343) (Czech) in Spitfire Mk.I X4266 from 57 OTU, RAF Eshott, collided in mid-air with Spitfire Mk.I AR222. Korourek was killed when possibly trying to attempt a forced-landing at Broderick Farm (sic), Warkworth in his damaged aircraft. It went through a hedgerow and as it did so, the cockpit section apparently broke free of the airframe, leaving the pilot's body on top of the hedge. The farmer, Mr Foster, later helped RAF personnel dig out the aircraft's Merlin engine which had buried itself ten feet down.

The mention of "Broderick Farm" presumably relates to Brotherwick.

Sgt Korourek is buried at Chevington and his grave would have been the one you saw.

AR222 crashed nearby and was destroyed by fire. An RAF recovery team - possibly from No.83 Maintenance Unit, RAF Woolsington (now Newcastle Airport), removed the wreckage from both crash sites.

Both X4266 and AR222 would have been fairly "clapped-out" Spits, having long been relegated from front-line duties (which by 1943 would have been flying Spitfire Mk.XIs).

Graeme
To confirm, Jimmy Foster farmed Brotherwick farm upto the 70s when the current tenants took over. He lived in the end terrace next to the railway bridge and used to "show" shirehorses. My grandparents farmed the next door farm so I have a good idea which was his land (by the way my grandmother's sister was Norah Robson of Cliffhouse Farm Togston who had their own tragedy later that year in December 1943)
Unfortunately, my grandparents are not around to ask as they would certainly have known exactly where the aircraft crashed.
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Old 25-04-2013, 08:36 PM
Graeme Graeme is offline
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I believe the pilot of Spitfire Mk.I AR222 was French but have no further details at present.
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Old 15-06-2013, 08:04 PM
Chris D Chris D is offline
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Hi, Coquet, Hollydog and Graeme.

The pilot of the second aircraft Spitfire AR222 was;
35104 Sous Lieutenant (P/O) Jean Barthélémy Nemoz, Free French Air Force, 57 Operational Training Unit RAF Eshott, aged 25 +
He was originally buried on the same day as Sgt Korourek, 21st March 1943 at Chevington Cemetery, Red Row. On the 25th October 1948 at 11.25am, on the authority of the Home Office and Coroner, the remains of Sous Lieutenant Nemoz were exhumed for reburial in France. I believe he was re-interred at Sorgues (Vaucluse), the south of France.

Jim Forster took over Brotherwick Farm, however, he was present at the farm at the tender age of 14 when the accident happened.

I hope to visit the sites this week and find confirmation of the exact locations.

Chris
Chris R Davies
Almost Forgotten
The Search For Aviation Accidents In Northumberland
(Amberley Books, out now)

Last edited by Chris D; 17-06-2013 at 03:56 PM.
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Old 15-06-2013, 09:31 PM
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Hi Chris D

Welcome to the forum and thanks for the post. We, as you gather are very interested in local aviation and if I can help in any way on your quest just ask.
Good luck with the search and please let us know the outcome - or where to buy the book!
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Old 15-06-2013, 09:55 PM
Chris D Chris D is offline
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For further interest in my work,

If you visit the church of St. John The Divine, you will see a brass memorial which I researched and errected on 7th May 2011.
It records 13 aviation accidents involving 29 aircrew, which happened in the villages surrounding the former RAF Station Acklington between 1939 and 1943.

I have to date located the exact locations of 123 crash sites in Northumberland and I am currently working on a further 15 (including 3 at Warkworth).

My book, Almost Forgotten is available in all good bookshops and on Amazon

Chris
Chris R Davies
Almost Forgotten
The Search For Aviation Accidents In Northumberland
(Amberley Books, out now)
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Old 16-06-2013, 06:43 AM
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Ah yes, I have the book Chris, excellent piece of historical work.

Are you looking into the Beaufighter that crashed on the opposite side of the river to the Stanners at Warkworth? I believe there is still a gap in the hedge above the river, but that was my fathers' heresay that I have not had confirmed.
I also remember seeing one of Acklington's Whirlwinds on the back of a truck after a heavy landing in the dunes at Warkworth - late sixties? both crew and heli were probably repairable so I have not found any references to it!
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Old 16-06-2013, 07:10 PM
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Hollydog,

Thank you for the complement regarding my book.
I have Volumes 2 & 3 completed (but require a publisher) and have started Vol 4.

Yes I have the aircraft opposite Stanners, this was Bristol Beaufighter Mk.VI V8769
416th Night Fighter Sqn. USAAF RAF Station Acklington, 21st June 1943
Pilot: O-793128 1st Lieutenant Clifford L Leggett.
He was originally buried in Brockwood Cemetery, Surrey, His remains were exhumed and he is now buried at the American Cemetery, Madingley, Cambridgeshire, Plot F, Row 5, Grave 70.
Your location for the crash matches my information,
I have been allowed access to search and hope to try by the end of the week.

I should be searching Brotherwick tomorrow morning about 8.30am.

Chris
Chris R Davies
Almost Forgotten
The Search For Aviation Accidents In Northumberland

Last edited by Chris D; 17-06-2013 at 06:23 PM.
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Old 16-06-2013, 09:40 PM
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Many thanks Chris for the information on the 2nd pilot.
I think it's important to record and remember those that died in the conflict, combat or accident.

Keep up the good work.
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Old 17-06-2013, 06:38 PM
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It was believed for a quite a long while that Both Spitfires X4266 and AR222 crashed into the Far South Field, Brotherwick Farm.

I have searched the Far South Field today, and can confirm there are two craters which would draw you to the conclusion that this is where the two aircraft crashed to the ground.

Sorry to disappoint, but these are bomb craters.

I have another area to search on Brotherwick, unfortunately, it is in crop, so I will update you in September.

Chris
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Old 21-06-2013, 11:02 AM
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I have had a chat with young Jimmy and he is a wealth of information. One engine went 10 feet down and with his father and the horses they dragged it out to the waiting RAF low loader on the railway bridge to Black Bridge road. It was very close to the old Brotherwick Quarry near the river.
The bomb craters were two of nine bombs dropped in a line, the final one ending up in the Grange Rest home garden as a UXB on Watershaugh road.
They were trying to hit a coal train which due to the gale force winds at the time had lost its tarpauline which was hiding the coal fire.
He also identified where a bomb fell on the road next to Hermitage farm which was aimed at the search light on the top of the hill nearby. This is mentioned in North east war diairies - N299 Warkworth

Last edited by hollydog; 22-06-2013 at 09:06 PM.
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Old 22-06-2013, 06:32 PM
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On the 30th September 1940 two Spitfires engaged in a practice dog fight collided over Alnmouth. The two Spitfires were from 610 Squadron at RAF Acklington; L1037 piloted by 102587 Sgt. H.R Clarke, and K9818 piloted by 74324 P/O Charles Harvey Bacon. They were at 14,000 feet at the point of collision, the wing being chopped off Bacon's plane. Bacon failed to bail out and was killed when it crashed into Alnmouth beach. Clarke managed to get out of his, but it is believed he struck the tail on the way and was knocked unconscious. He did regain consciousness and found himself descending, upside down with his chute only attached by a single strap caught around his ankle. He fainted again but did manage to make it to the ground alive.

Now the remains of Clarke’s plane were dug up in 1995, and are now in the Bamburgh Museum.

I wonder if there are more aircraft still ‘out there’ to be recovered?


They have a quantity of the recovered material laid out in its appropriate position against a silhouette of a complete aircraft.
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File Type: jpg spitfire_L1037.jpg (118.5 KB, 19 views)
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Old 22-06-2013, 09:08 PM
Graeme Graeme is offline
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I think my list of crashed military aircraft in Northumberland since 1915 reached around 500 entries. I can't believe that every piece from every crash was recovered, so yes, there are plenty of bits out there. There is a lot of the Halifax bomber up on Glendhu Hill in Kielder, with plenty of recognisable bits among the trees:

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Old 22-06-2013, 09:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris D View Post
Hollydog,

Thank you for the complement regarding my book.
I have Volumes 2 & 3 completed (but require a publisher) and have started Vol 4.

Yes I have the aircraft opposite Stanners, this was Bristol Beaufighter Mk.VI V8769
416th Night Fighter Sqn. USAAF RAF Station Acklington, 21st June 1943
Pilot: O-793128 1st Lieutenant Clifford L Leggett.
He was originally buried in Brockwood Cemetery, Surrey, His remains were exhumed and he is now buried at the American Cemetery, Madingley, Cambridgeshire, Plot F, Row 5, Grave 70.
Your location for the crash matches my information,
I have been allowed access to search and hope to try by the end of the week.

I should be searching Brotherwick tomorrow morning about 8.30am.

Chris
Chris R Davies
Almost Forgotten
The Search For Aviation Accidents In Northumberland
Chris, you were at the site yesterday, did you realise it was 70 years to the day exactly?
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Old 23-06-2013, 09:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graeme View Post
I think my list of crashed military aircraft in Northumberland since 1915 reached around 500 entries. I can't believe that every piece from every crash was recovered, so yes, there are plenty of bits out there. There is a lot of the Halifax bomber up on Glendhu Hill in Kielder, with plenty of recognisable bits among the trees:

That's quite amazing.

I was thinking about buried unrecovered aircraft in accessible territory, like the Alnmouth spitfire. It must have cratered a hole and then been filled in by the farmer without much being removed.
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Old 23-06-2013, 10:15 AM
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Default WW2 Aircraft Crash Sites: Lancaster KB745

Just out of interest this is the crash site of Avro Lancaster KB745 on the side of the Cheviot Hill. That's not me by the way, I'm behind the Camera. I remember masses of melted bullets. Not sure if any of that stuff remains, I assume it's been carted off by collectors.


I should record the crew that died:
Pilot F/O G.R. Duncan
Nav. F/O W.G. Layng
Air Bomber F/O A. Gaddess
W.Op Sgt. W.R. Karstens
Flight Eng. P/O J.W.F. Hall
Upper Gunner Sgt. D.A. Trott
Rear Gunner Sgt. T.B.Tierney


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Old 23-06-2013, 10:45 PM
Chris D Chris D is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coquet View Post
Just out of interest this is the crash site of Avro Lancaster KB745 on the side of the Cheviot Hill. That's not me by the way, I'm behind the Camera. I remember masses of melted bullets. Not sure if any of that stuff remains, I assume it's been carted off by collectors.


I should record the crew that died:
Pilot F/O G.R. Duncan
Nav. F/O W.G. Layng
Air Bomber F/O A. Gaddess
W.Op Sgt. W.R. Karstens
Flight Eng. P/O J.W.F. Hall
Upper Gunner Sgt. D.A. Trott
Rear Gunner Sgt. T.B.Tierney



Coquet,

The crash site of Avro Lancaster KB745 VR-V is at Goldscleugh Head Burn, Cheviot. I covered the true account of this crash in Chapter 30 in my book.
Various accounts all of the crew are recorded as officers which although not impossible, it was not probable.
This is what was recorded at the time of death and burial in 1944;

Pilot: J/35615 F/O George Ross Duncan, RCAF, Age 21 Navigator: J/38188 F/O William George Layng, RCAF, Age 22 Wireless Op: J/92361(R187513) F/Sgt William Russell Karstens, RCAF, Age 23 Bomb Aimer: J/35101 F/O Andrew Gaddess, RCAF, Age 21
Flight Engineer: 179851 P/O John William Frank Hall, RAFVR, RCAF, Age 20 Air Gunner (Upper): J/92914 (R201765) Sgt Donald Alexander Trott, RCAF, Age 19Air Gunner (Rear): J/92476 (R188974) Sgt Thomas Bernard Tierney, RCAF, Age 22
Note: Service numbers recorded on death certificates are in brackets.

I have also located the exact sites (found evidence at all sites)of the following aircraft in the Cheviots which all publications record 'no trace found';

Hawker Hurricane N2522 @ Megrims Knowe (memorial post placed) Vol 1 Chpt 4
Hawker Hurricane V6860 @ The Curr (memorial post placed) Vol 3
Armstrong Vickers Wellington MkIV R1535 GR-G (memorial post placed) Vol 1 Chpt 8
Dornier 217E-4 5432 U5+DL @ Madam Law (memorial post placed) Vol 2
Supermarine Spirfire P8587 @ Bellyside Hill, Cheviot (memorial post prepared) Vol 1 Chpt 26
Junkers JU88A-14 144354 3E+BH @ Linhope Rig (memorial post prepared) Vol 1 Chpt 3
Bristol Beaufighter Mk.VI EL457 - 9Y @ Threestoneburn Wood, Hedgehope Hill
(memorial post prepared) Vol 1 Chpt 2
Piper Archer PA-28-181 N9503C G-BHDG @ Little Hedgope Hill Vol 1 Chpt 1

Chris
Almost Forgotten
The Search For Aviation Accidents In Northumberland
(Amberley Books)

Last edited by Chris D; 26-06-2013 at 02:23 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 23-06-2013, 10:49 PM
Chris D Chris D is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hollydog View Post
Chris, you were at the site yesterday, did you realise it was 70 years to the day exactly?

Yes I did realise, unfortunately, today was about getting my bearings on the land with a sweep rather than a constructive search.
I now have a definative search area for the site.

Chris
Almost Forgotten
The Search For Aviation Accidents In Northumberland
(Amberley Books)

Last edited by Chris D; 27-06-2013 at 07:12 AM.
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