Avro Anson Mk.I EF935 of No.1 (O)AFU crashed on Corney Fell near Bootle, Cumbria, on the 8th January 1945


Stewart Anderson Stephen Sergeant Pilot Survived
Anthony Bird Sergeant Navigator Survived
Harold Biffen Warrant Officer Wireless Operator / Air Gunner Killed
? ? ? Survived
? ? ? Survived


The aircraft was on a night navigation exercise from RAF Wigtown in Southern Scotland when it crashed on Corney Fell above the village of Bootle in the south western Lake District. After failing to return a search was started for the aircraft, a Warwick from No.281 Sqn at Great Orton near Carlisle was tasked with following its route around the Irish Sea. It was later diverted to the Cumbrian coast when the missing Anson was spotted by another aircraft.

Crash site of Avro Anson EF935 on Corney Fell, Bootle, Cumbria
The crash site on Corney Fell is marked by a large scar on the otherwise grassy hillside. The scar contains numerous small pieces of the aircraft.

The crash site was first reached by a farmer who was lower down the hill when one of the searching aircraft made a number of low passes over him heading in the direction of the wrecked aircraft before circling and then repeating the manoeuvre. The injured airmen were rescued by a Mountain Rescue Team from RAF Millom and then transferred to hospital, all had suffered serious leg injuries which had prevented any of them from leaving the site.

Wreckage at the crash site of Avro Anson EF935 on Corney Fell, Bootle, Cumbria
Some of the pieces of wreckage which can be found at the crash site, the hinges are all marked with Avro inspection stamps.
Grave of Warrant Officer Harold Biffen at Blacon Cemetery, Chester, killed in Avro Anson EF935 on Corney Fell, Bootle, Cumbria
Warrant Officer Biffen was buried at Blacon Cemetery in Chester, above is his grave.