Key.Aero Network
Register Free

Results 1 to 30 of 46

Thread: Emergency Landings at disused airfields

Hybrid View

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Berkshire
    Posts
    125

    Emergency Landings at disused airfields

    I came across the following entry in the "Losses" column on the UK military a/c serials web site;

    27/04/1964 XN785 C Lightning F2 92 Sqn Crashed during an attempted forced landing at the disused airfield at Hutton Cranswick, Humberside. The pilot had been trying to reach Leconfield short of fuel due to a systems fault. He did not eject and was killed.

    I got thinking about an incident I heard about in the 90s whilst working at Atomic energy research establishment Harwell (formally RAF Harwell between 1930s and 1945).

    During the 60s a USAF T33 mistook Harwell's disused runway for an active one -probably RAF Abingdon a few miles north of Harwell- and landed. Once down he needed the assistance of RATO bottles to get airborne again, however as some of the bottles failed to ignite the aircraft left the runway and slid across the grass toward some of the establishments buildings.

    Needless to say the incident and the possible out come had the aircraft hit a building containing sensitive material, worried the management to the extent they had the disused runway covered with earth and grassed over.

    I also recall a Ryan Air flight landing at the old RAF Ballykelly runway thinking he was at Derry/Londonderry Airport.

    Anyone got any other info on aircraft landing on disused runways whether by accident or due to an emergency?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    1,509
    A F-100 crashed at Shepherds Grove while attempting to land there. And someone told me that an F-86 from Shepherds Grove landed at Knettishall with a problem.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    In the passenger seat
    Posts
    4,294
    Westland chief test pilot Harold Penrose had cause to put the prototype Wyvern TF.1 TS371 down at the disused airfield of Warmwell in Dorset following engine/prop failure. After landing it is said that without knowing he had completely missed some concrete blocks hidden in the grass that had been placed there to stop enemy aircraft from using it during the war.
    The Wyvern was subsequently repaired and flown out.
    Wyvern & Sturgeon parts projects
    Bassingbourn Tower Museum Volunteer

    Email wyvernfan@gmail.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    6,124
    There was a light aircraft, PA28 I think a while back did an emergency landing at night on a disused airfield with engine problems, he spotted the reflection off a disused runway at night and put it down...... climbing out he found himself smack bang in the middle of an aerial farm and had missed somehow every bracing wire on the way in.... it was so dense that even in daylight they realised it would never get back out, so it was dismantled and left on a truck.........

    There was a case of a wellington landing on a dummy target airfield during the war, which was nothing more than fields set up with airfield lights.....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    53
    On 27 July 2004, a Royal Navy Sea King from 711 Squadron RNAS Culdrose sufferred a major oil leak over Dartmoor and had to make an emergency landing at the old RAF Harrowbeer airfield at Yelverton, Devon. Thankfully, there were no casualties.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    34
    Back in the early 70's, an RAAF Mirage out of Williamstown made an emergency landing on a disused WW2 strip at nearby Raymond Terrace.
    As I recall, it was a flame-out soon after take-off and the pilot put it down among the tall grass growing through the thin surface.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Peterborough
    Posts
    871
    Quote Originally Posted by Wyvernfan View Post
    Westland chief test pilot Harold Penrose had cause to put the prototype Wyvern TF.1 TS371 down at the disused airfield of Warmwell in Dorset following engine/prop failure. After landing it is said that without knowing he had completely missed some concrete blocks hidden in the grass that had been placed there to stop enemy aircraft from using it during the war.
    The Wyvern was subsequently repaired and flown out.
    Not doubting the landing at all... but I'm suspect about the concrete blocks part of the story as Warmwell was an operational airfield right through WW2!

    My contribution to the thread is about Kimbolton airfield near Huntington. Not sure if this was an EMERGENCY landing: On 28 November 1971 Syrian pilot Rafiq Kalos El Jassen Ashour attempted to land four Indians and a Pakistani at the airfield in a Piper Cherokee. He was spotted and rammed by a pick-up truck driven by Raymond Covine, a local famer. Ashour tried to make good his escape, but was chased by Mr Covine. It seems that several times during the chase the masked pilot stopped to offer the farmer a £1,000 bribe to forget he had ever seen anything!
    Interested in what I'm doing? Please visit http://gmsenterprises.blogspot.com/

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Victoria Australia
    Posts
    54
    I,m suprised the Gimli glider hasnt been metioned yet!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    In the passenger seat
    Posts
    4,294
    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamSimons View Post
    Not doubting the landing at all... but I'm suspect about the concrete blocks part of the story as Warmwell was an operational airfield right through WW2!
    The description of events came from HP himself, and can be found in his book Adventure with Fate.. but.. you are not the first to question this part of the story. It may well have been a case of mistaken identity or fading memory on his part, but nevertheless to get that beast down in one piece was amazing enough. His colleague Peter Garner lost his life in the same aircraft in similar circumstances.
    Wyvern & Sturgeon parts projects
    Bassingbourn Tower Museum Volunteer

    Email wyvernfan@gmail.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Torquay - previously Hampshire
    Posts
    519
    Holmsley South- 6 miles east of Hurn (Bournemouth) was frequently mistaken for Hurn in the 50s and 60s- even after the runways were removed in the late 60s.

    Several aircraft landed there by mistake (mostly light aircraft) but I believe that on one occasion an Ambassador from Christchurch made a "precautionary" landing there in th early 50s- altho' I can find no reference to this at the moment.

    Perhaps someone can verify this.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    At St Athan but from St Mawgan
    Posts
    10,724
    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamSimons View Post
    Not doubting the landing at all... but I'm suspect about the concrete blocks part of the story as Warmwell was an operational airfield right through WW2!
    The concrete blocks part of the story is possibly a blend of two things. As all wartime civil flying was banned, concrete blocks were used to block off the unused civil airfields during the war to deny their use to enemy landings, or indeed unwarranted take-offs (spying etc).
    Post-war, large concrete blocks (sometimes concrete filled oil barrels) were used to block off dissued wartime airfields and runways.

    There was a case of a Dutch Neptune landing at the dissused RAF St Eval instead of St Mawgan, and narrowly missing these blocks. However I don't think it was an emergency landing.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Peterborough
    Posts
    871
    Checking through our own Airfield Focus 21: Warmwell by Anthony Cooke, the author fails to mention this, but in Action Stations 5: Military airfields of the South West, author Chris Ashworth states that Penrose '...performed a dead-stick landing between heaps of debris left on the abandoned field'. Interestingly Ashworth suggests there could have been more there. In the lead-up to the Wyvern 'arrival' he states: 'This was the end of Warmwell as an active airfield, but at least one more emergency landing was performed on it's grass surface.
    Last edited by GrahamSimons; 8th October 2009 at 08:32.
    Interested in what I'm doing? Please visit http://gmsenterprises.blogspot.com/

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Newbury, BERKS
    Posts
    562
    Quote Originally Posted by pagen01 View Post
    There was a case of a Dutch Neptune landing at the dissused RAF St Eval instead of St Mawgan, and narrowly missing these blocks. However I don't think it was an emergency landing.
    Didn't the Neptune blow a tyre on landing? I'm sure that's the story I read.
    BOLTER, BOLTER FULL POWER! Keith, if he bolts again we'll have to divert him to St Mawgan

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Morphett Vale, 30 Klm's south of Adelaide, South Australia
    Posts
    417
    [QUOTE=Muscle-Manta;1470452]I came across the following entry in the "Losses" column on the UK military a/c serials web site;

    27/04/1964 XN785 C Lightning F2 92 Sqn Crashed during an attempted forced landing at the disused airfield at Hutton Cranswick, Humberside. The pilot had been trying to reach Leconfield short of fuel due to a systems fault. He did not eject and was killed.[QUOTE]

    I was stationed at Leaconfield (19 Sqdn) at the time and on that day, I was driving in from RAF Driffield where I lived, and XN785 past me on my right hand side. She was very low and had her wheels down. I didn't see the crash, in fact, I didn't know she had crashed until I got to my squadron to start my night shift. Naturally we were all abuzz with the news, not knowing about the unfortunate pilot. An armourer friend who lived close to me, was on crash crew and was sent to the crash scene to make the seat safe, not knowing the the pilot was still sitting there........minus his head. My mate (can't remember his name) lost his lunch and another guy was called in to do the honours. The story goes that another member of the crash crew was reviewing the crash wreckage and rolled over what he thought was the avpin bottle (I think) and it was in fact the pilots bone dome and head. A sad ending for all concerned.

    I didn't know that there was a disused airfield at Hutton Cranswick and can't find any evidence of it on GoogleEarth.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Königswinter
    Posts
    1,601
    Quote Originally Posted by Deskpilot View Post
    I didn't know that there was a disused airfield at Hutton Cranswick and can't find any evidence of it on GoogleEarth.
    http://www.homepages.mcb.net/bones/0...ields_E-L7.htm
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Thailand
    Posts
    412

    Ventura

    Ventura of Portugese air force on patrol from Ballykelly returned and landed at a nearby disused airfield!Crew had limited english and were put up for the night by a local farming family,aircraft was flown out next day,this about 1960!

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Location
    E. Lincs
    Posts
    440
    Do I recall...that a BBMF Spitfire once had to put down on a strip at a disused North of Coningsby..Tattershall Thorpe.? ...

    ..and as a lad there was always a story at school of something putting down at disused RAF Spilsby.?? the story wandered thorugh various types....but was there a sadly fatal event there with a Meteor.??

    Clive.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

- Part of the    Network -

KEY AERO AVIATION NEWS

MAGAZINES

AVIATION FORUM

SHOP

 

WEBSITES