Avro Avian G-EBVZ, crashed during an attempted landing at Hough Hill, Stalybridge on the 25th March 1928


Ms Winifred Brown Pilot Uninjured
Mr W. Browning Passenger Uninjured


Jack Hood Bystander Killed


Arrangements had been made for an aircraft from the Lancashire Aero Club, which at that time was at Woodford aerodrome, to fly Mr Browning (a member of the Club) and a film canister to a field close to Stalybridge, which had been marked with a white circle in the centre and a flag at each corner, on behalf of a local cinema owner as a publicity stunt. As a precaution against the film not arriving the canister being flown was empty (though Miss Brown was unaware of this) and the film itself had been delivered by more normal means.

The original plan was for one of the Club instructors to make the flight in one of their aircraft but this plan fell through. Mr Browning persuaded Winifred Brown to make the flight in the Avian which she owned. It had been made at Woodford and delivered on the 14th February 1928.

The pair took off from Woodford and arrived over the field at around 16:30, after circling round Mr Browning took the controls to attempt a landing but misjudged his approach and Miss Brown took back control. Mr Browning did not touch the controls after this point, although he did urge Miss Brown to land in the field. She eventually made her third and final attempt at landing. By this time a large crowd had gathered around the perimeter of the field to watch the spectacle.

The field was recorded as being some 150 yards square with a former rifle range at its northern boundary. All of the walls were 4 feet high though the rifle range had a second wall 7 feet high on its northern side. Miss Brown was trying to land into the wind which was from the Northwest. She crossed the Southeast corner of the field at about 15 feet and touched down 60 yards into the field. The aircraft had travelled 30 yards along the ground when she realised that it was not going to stop in the remainder of the field. Normally she would have tried to swing the aircraft around to lose speed but the crowd on the Eastern, Southern and Western boundaries had invaded the field and were closing in on the aircraft. This left Miss Brown with only one option, that was to try and get airborne again. She opened the throttle and the 60hp Cirrus engine picked up power quickly and the aircraft lifted off the ground. However the undercarriage was not more than 3 feet off the ground and it struck the wall at the North western corner of the field and the aircraft ploughed into the 7 foot outer wall of the range.

A group of children had been sat on the lower wall and one of them, Jack Hood, was struck by the aircraft and killed. An small number were also injured. The pilot and her passenger were shaken by the experience but uninjured.

The field in which the landing took place is now under a housing estate, covered by Winchester Road, Dukinfield, although there are sections of the wall on the northern side of the firing range left, though these are at the opposite end of the range.

Avro Avian G-EBVZ Crash Site Map
This map shows the current and former boundaries, the red lines are former boundaries that were present in 1928.