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Boscombe Down Flight Test Accident 1953

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Boscombe Down Flight Test Accident 1953

Old 14th Jul 2010, 15:07
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Boscombe Down Flight Test Accident 1953


I am trying to find details about a fatal accident which occurred on, I believe, 27th June 1953. I am trying to find out what aircraft was involved and how it crashed. The pilot was Sqn Ldr David Colquhoun.

Any and all help is greatly appreciated.

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Old 14th Jul 2010, 17:20
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27 Jul 53 Sea Hawk 1 WF149 Sqn Ldr DW Colquhoun. Gun firing trials. Port wing inadvertently folded after take-off. Crashed into rear of officers mess at Boscombe.
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Old 14th Jul 2010, 17:55
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I agree with redsetter except the date was 27 June 1953

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Old 15th Jul 2010, 08:25
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Thanks gents. The information tallys up nicely with what I already had and is much appreciated.

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Old 2nd Jan 2012, 13:28
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Further info on Sea Hawk crash 27/6/1953

As a lad I lived in Amesbury, and with the proximity of Boscombe Down, a natural hobby was "plane spotting". On the day in question (which I seem to remember was a Saturday, about lunchtime) I was with a friend, Victor Hope (another keen spotter) in the garden of his house on the north side of Amesbury, when we noticed a heavy pall of smoke in the direction of the main camp. We immediately ran off towards the smoke, and as we got closer, it was obvious that something pretty serious had happened. As we approached the SE end of Allington Way (one of the roads within the married quarters area) we could see that there were some garages ablaze on the far side of the junction with Stockport Road. As we reached the junction (and probably dared not go any further) slightly to the left, the wreckage of the aircraft could be seen in contact with the rear of one of the accommodation blocks (which I found out later was for WAAF personnel - and not the Officers Mess, as reported by Redsetter). Any fire in the wreckage had, by then, been extinguished by Fire Crews. Sadly, also visible was a yellow tarpaulin covering what we assumed was the body of the pilot, who I later learned from the newspapers to be Squadron Leader Colquhoun. Later the same afternoon, at our favourite "spotting" place, right outside the North end of the perimeter fence where the railway line crossed the road, whenever any aircraft was seen coming in to land, memories of the sights we had seen caused us to take shelter in the culvert under the railway.
I've travelled past the site of the crash many times in the intervening years, and it always takes me back to that sad day. The eventual repairs
to the accomodation block can still be identified.
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Old 5th Jun 2012, 20:42
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Hello guys, just to say I am his nephew/great nephew of David Colquhoun and his memory lives on, i have his wings (cut from his unifom) his WW1 gold wings and his Atomic Service medal (its the only one in the world) that was given to him as he tested nuclear bombs in australia and i beliive he was the only one to do it (for the british) , his log boks are highly prized and with the RAF not the Australians who belive they should be theres but i disgress.
RIP Squadron Lead David Calquhoun
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Old 13th Mar 2013, 10:24
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Sea Hawk crash 1953

A little late contributing but, here's what I saw: I was lying sun-bathing outside my block, when I saw the naval Sea Hawk appear above the main HQ buildings and appear to climb very steeply and bank. The port wing then folded throwing the aircraft upside down, it first hit the tennis courts behind the officer's mess, hitting the garages (setting fire to them) and then seemed to bounce into the squash courts and head towards the WAAFs quarters. The amunition in the aircraft was exploding.

I ran towards the accident where I saw the wreckage scattered over a wide area and the unfortunate pilot who was already covered in sheets. How there was so very little damage and no one else injured was a miracle (although I think some WAAFs were treated for shock). It appeared, if it was at all possible, that the pilot tried to avoid the closely packed buildings.

Arthur Waldron
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