WWII Plane Crash in Colton July 1944
We have been looking into this plane crash on 20th July 1944.
Nev James has lived all his 80 odd years in the village. To hear Nev's recollections of the plane crash follow this link. Please note this requires an MP3 player to be installed on your computer / browser. It is a large file so will take some time to download.
One of Nev's friends, who now lives in Wales has sent the following information via his son Philip Deacon:
"Dad says he has been speaking to Neville James (Hollow Lane) about the plane recently. Dad recalls seeing the plane. It was a German plane which had been captured, and was being flown from Hixon by a RAF pilot. It was a was a small plane, sandy-coloured (ie desert camoulfage). It crash-landed somewhere behind Boughey Hall. He remembers it being collected on one of the very large Bedford 'Queen Mary' lorries.
He goes on to say that Harry Leake used to drive one of these in the RAF during the war. Harry's brother Carlie was RAF aircrew and was killed in action. The other brother Bill Leake was married to one of my grandfather Arthur Deacon."
The recollections from Flt.Sgt Ronald Turner, a passenger in the plane can be heard here. Note that this is a largish video file so will take time to download and will require software on your machine to run.
Unfortunately we have been unable to locate any newspaper records of the incident.
A brief history of the DK280 aircraft.
All that follows is taken from pages off the internet and other sources.
DK280 was formally a civilian Messerschmitt Bf108B-1. It was a demonstrator, owned by the British agents for Messerschmitt, which had been imported by H.J.Aldington, the proprietor of AFN Ltd. This Taifun was first used by the RAE at Farnborough in connection with the tests carried out there on the Bf109E.
The aircraft was impressed into the RAF on the 17th April 1941 and received the RAF serial DK280. It was allocated to the Maintenance Command Communication Squadron (MCCS) at Andover.
Its undercarriage collapsed on landing at Weston Zoyland, was repaired and brought back on charge on 30th September 1943 with the same unit.
It finally crashed (engine failure?) at Boughey Hall Farm, Colton, near Rugeley in Staffordshire on 20th July 1944. It was finally SoC as Catagory E2 on 17th August 1944.
It is believed that this is a picture of DK280.
There were three Bf108B-1 in the RAF, with MCCS, used during the war, DK280, AW167 and ES955. Known as the 'Aldon' after the British sales agent for Messerschmitt.
AW167 was a plane used by the German Embassy and left at Croydon Airport at the outbreak of war. It is said that someone took the valves out the tyres so preventing it from taking off.
ES955 was imported shortly before the outbreak of war. It may have been incorrectly given the number ES995. This plane was 'sold' to West Germany in June 1959. It crashed in Walsrode after engine failure on take off on 7th September 1980.