Accident Armstrong Whitworth Whitley B Mk V N1347,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 225913
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Date:Friday 12 April 1940
Type:Silhouette image of generic whtl model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Armstrong Whitworth Whitley B Mk V
Owner/operator:77 Sqn RAF
Registration: N1347
MSN: AWA.1511
Fatalities:Fatalities: 5 / Occupants: 5
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:North Sea, between Skagerrak and Kattegat. -   Denmark
Phase: Combat
Departure airport:RAF Driffield, North Yorkshire
Destination airport:RAF Driffield, North Yorkshire
Armstrong Whitworth Whiltley Mk.V N1347 (KN-E) of 77 Squadron, RAF: The crew left RAF Driffield at 19:35 on April 11 on a reconnaissance mission for enemy shipping in the Skagerrak and Kattegat. A last W/T transmission was heard at 03: 05 LT on the morning of April 12, then the aircraft disappeared into the sea between the east coast of Denmark and the west coast of Sweden. The official Air Ministry report into the incident (File AIR 81/122) states "Whitley N1347 force landed in the North Sea because of engine failure, 12 April 1940". (However, that would make Whitley N1347 some 300 km west of its last known position). All five crew were killed (officially listed as "missing presumed dead")

Crew of Whitley N1347:
Flying Officer George Edgar Saddington (Pilot, Service Number 37945, aged 22) - missing presumed dead;
Pilot Officer Christopher Rendel Hebeler (Service Number 40390, aged 24) - missing presumed dead (Commission Gazetted : Tuesday 20 February, 1940)
Sergeant John Raleigh Ibbotson (Service Number 580861) - missing presumed dead;
Corporal Oscar Haire (Service Number 567057, aged 22) - missing presumed dead;
Aircraftman 1st Class Peter William Simpson Chalmers (Service Number 619757) - missing presumed dead;

As no trace of the aircraft or its crew of five was ever found, the crew are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial.


1. Royal Air Force Aircraft L1000-N9999 (James J Halley, Air Britain)
2. National Archives (PRO Kew) File AIR 81/122:
10.,-peter-william-simpson/ .
11. Rob Davis Bomber Command Losses Database


Two Armstrong Whitworth Whitley Mark Vs, N1373 'KN-J' and N1347 'KN-E', of No. 77 Squadron RAF, overfly Driffield, Yorkshire, on return from a night-reconnaissance sortie: Aircraft of the Royal Air Force 1939-1945-armstrong Whitworth Aw.38 Whitley C928

Revision history:

07-Jun-2019 18:53 Dr. John Smith Added
07-Jun-2019 18:56 Dr. John Smith Updated [Source, Narrative]
08-Jun-2019 10:39 stehlik49 Updated [Operator]
11-Apr-2024 06:32 Rob Davis Updated [Source, Narrative]

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