Supermarine Spitfire Mk.I X4843 of No.57 Operational Training Unit, flew into Yr Aran near Beddgelert on the 26th September 1941
|Norman Ware Mowat||Sergeant RAAF||Pilot||Killed|
The pilot, a 27 year old former accountant from Australia, was part way through his training course at RAF Hawarden prior to being posted to an operational unit. He had been with the unit since the start of September 1941.
During the afternoon of the 26th he was authorised by Flying Officer Philip Mitchell, the commander of D Flight 57 OTU, for a cloud flying exercise in the area normally used by the unit for this purpose. This being the 12 or so miles between Chester and Wrexham. The weather at the time was noted as 7/10ths cloud at 5,000ft though this deteriorated to 9/10ths at 3,000ft by 18:00.
Sgt Mowat took off at just before 16:00, normal practice was to make radio contact with base every ten minutes, the contact at around 16:10 was made but there was no further contact with the aircraft. Calls made by Hawarden (Fagot) from 16:36 until the aircraft was reported missing all went unanswered.
Nothing further was heard from the pilot. On the 28th September the wreck was located by a walker on Yr Aran over 50 miles from the area it should have been in, he notified the Police who attended the scene along with the RAF Llandwrog station Engineering Officer and Senior Medical Officer. They found that the aircraft had flown into the mountain which had caused “it to burst and scatter over the mountain”. The pilot’s body was found about 30 yards from the main wreckage, having been flung out on impact.
It was not established by the Court of Inquiry why Sgt Mowat was so far off course.