Lockheed Hudson Mk.I N7325 / B-59 of No.1 (Coastal) Operational Training Unit, crashed on Cross Fell on the 6th September 1942
|Paul Arthur Bourke||Pilot Officer||Pilot||Killed|
|Robert Band||Sergeant||Wireless Operator / Air Gunner||Killed|
|Leslie Thomas Griffin||Sergeant||Wireless Operator / Air Gunner||Killed|
|Richard William Hewitt||Sergeant||Wireless Operator / Air Gunner||Killed|
The crew had taken off from RAF Silloth late on the 5th September for a night navigation exercise. The planned route was from Silloth to South Rock light off Northern Ireland, turning south to the Kish Bank lightship off Dublin, then eastwards to Skerries lighthouse off Anglesey before returning direct to Silloth. The last radio contact with the crew was at 00:30 on the 6th when they were some 20 miles south of South Rock. Because of the lack of contact it was assumed by the investigating officer that the aicraft’s radio equipment had failed, leaving the crew with only dead reckoning as a means of navigating. While returning to Silloth in cloud the crew strayed off track, eventually being 40 miles to the east of their intended route when the aircraft flew into the southern side of Cross Fell on Willie Bank above Crowdundle Beck. After the aircraft failed to return to Silloth it was declared overdue, at first light a search was started with aircraft from No.1 OTU and other units, including the ASR Squadron based at RAF Valley, searching the Irish Sea along the planned route. The search was extended south in the afternoon but nothing was seen. On the 7th September the crash site was located and reported to the RAF via the Police in Penrith.