Blackburn Skua L2969 attached to No.4 Ferry Pilots Pool, ATA, crashed near High Bentham on the 12th September 1940


Donald Roy Strachan Pilot Officer, RAF Pilot OK


The pilot, a member of the RAF seconded to the Air Transport Auxiliary was ferrying this Royal Navy aircraft from Hullavington to Donibristle. While in the High Bentham area the aircraft’s engine failed leaving the pilot with no choice but to abandon the aircraft, it ploughed into open moorland on Burn Moor spreading wreckage over a wide area.

Some sources give the serial as L2929, but this serial has also been linked with an aircraft which was lost off Norway. An accident card at the RAF Museum records L2969 which has had the number crossed through and in different hand writing 2929 written above. As it is a negative on microfilm it is hard to determine whether this was in pen or pencil. A number of other cards have been altered at later dates, sometimes with information which was not available in the 1940s, one card records an OS map reference using the modern grid system which came about after the end of WW2.

Crash site of Blackburn Skua near High Bentham, Lancashire
Very little remains where the aircraft impacted, the engine was once in some reeds nearby but this was recovered during the 1980s by the now defunct Pennine Aviation Museum, they also recovered the aircraft’s undercarriage and parts of the wing folding mechanism.
Wreckage at the crash site of Blackburn Skua near High Bentham, Lancashire
Scattered about are pieces like the ones shown here.