Site last updated 25 Jul 2014
Peak District Air Accident Research

Peak District Air Accident Research

Peak District Air Accident Research

Bristol Beaufighter T.F. Mk.X LX946 of No.304 Ferry Training Unit flew into high ground on Maol Mheadhion approximately 4 miles East of Port Ellen airfield on Islay on the 12th September 1943.

Bristol Beaufighter Mk.X

 

Crew / Passengers Rank - If Applicable Position e.g. Pilot Status
Kenneth Brant Thomas Flying Officer RCAF Pilot Killed
James Roy Waldron Pilot Officer RAFVR Navigator Killed

 

The aircraft was one of a number of Beaufighters whose crews had been tasked with a long distance night cross country exercise, they were taking off at after 03:00, LX946 was recorded as taking off at 03:35 and crashing within less than 5 mintues.  Shortly before their turn for take off another aircraft, LZ146, had crashed while turning away from the airfield after take off. It is speculated that this may have distracted Pilot Officer Thomas from his task and as a consequence failed to climb and flew into high ground not far from the airfield killing both airmen.

Grave of Flying Officer Kenneth Brant Thomas at Bowmore Cemetery, Islay

Flying Officer Kenneth Brant Thomas is buried at Bowmore cemetery a few miles from the crash site.

 

Wreckage at the crash site of Bristol Beaufighter Mk.X LX946 on Maol Mheadhion, Isle of Islay

Part from the aircraft are scattered over a reasonable area on the side of the hill, some are shown above.

 

Wreckage at the crash site of Bristol Beaufighter Mk.X LX946 on Maol Mheadhion, Isle of Islay

With the scattered parts are items like the exhaust collector ring shown above.

 

Wreckage at the crash site of Bristol Beaufighter Mk.X LX946 on Maol Mheadhion, Isle of Islay

Above are more of the panels that litter the site, in the background is Beinn Uraraidh where Firefly WB336 crashed.

 

Hercules engine near to the crash site of Bristol Beaufighter Mk.X LX946 on Maol Mheadhion, Isle of Islay

On the opposite side of the hill from the main site is one of the aircrafts engines, albeit very stripped down.

 

Burst fuel tank near to the crash site of Bristol Beaufighter Mk.X LX946 on Maol Mheadhion, Isle of Islay

Next to the engine is this burst fuel tank.

 

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