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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 20777
Last updated: 18 November 2021
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Type:Boulton Paul Balliol T Mk 2
Owner/operator:7 FTS Royal Air Force (7 FTS RAF)
Registration: WG179
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Pailton, 4 miles NNW of Rugby, Warwickshire, England -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Departure airport:RAF Cottesmore, Oakham, Rutland
Destination airport:RAF Bitteswell, Warwickshire
Boulton Paul Balliol T.2 WG179/"Q-A", 7 FTS (Flying Training School) RAF: Awaiting collection 19/5/1953. Delivered 21/5/1953: Written off 31/12/1953 when crashed at Pailton, 4 miles North North-West of Rugby, Warwickshire

The aircraft took off from RAF Cottesmore, Oakham, Rutland, on a cross-country navigation training sortie. During the flight, the pilot noticed that the fuel to the engine was being fed from the ventral tanks, even though fuel was still available from the wing tanks. The ventral fuel tank guages then began to behave erractically: they went from showing 17 gallons available in the ventral fuel tanks to "FULL", and then began to decrease again.

The pilot decided to make an emergency landing at RAF Bitteswell, Warwickshire, but while doing so, the engine failed completely, and he was forced to make an emergency wheels-up belly landing in a field at Pailton, 4 miles North North-West of Rugby, Warwickshire. The field was obstructed by trees, which caused damage to the airframe when it struck the trees on final approach.

The damaged airframe was initially assessed as Cat.4(R)("damaged but repairable"). However, it was later re-assessed as Cat.5(c) on 31/1/1954, and Struck off Charge to be reduced to spares and scrap. The Pilot - Pilot Officer (579425) J M Sievwright - was unhurt.

The reported crash location is near Pailton, a village and civil parish in the Borough of Rugby, Warwickshire, England. Pailton is located approximately five miles northwest of Rugby and about five miles southwest of Lutterworth. It lies at a crossroads of three roads, one towards Rugby to the south, one towards Lutterworth to the east, and Nuneaton and Coventry towards the west, at approximate co ordinates 52.4329N, 1.30703W


1. Halley, James (1999) Broken Wings Post-War Royal Air Force Accidents Tunbridge Wells: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd. p.153 ISBN 0-85130-290-4.
2. Last Take-off: A Record of RAF Aircraft Losses 1950 to 1953 by Colin Cummings p 439
3. Royal Air Force Aircraft WA100-WZ999 (James J Halley, Air Britain, 1983 p 42)
4. The Boulton Paul Balliol: The Last Merlin-Powered Aircraft by Alex Brew

Revision history:

07-Jun-2008 21:09 JINX Added
06-Sep-2017 19:12 Dr. John Smith Updated [Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
03-Nov-2018 15:03 Nepa Updated [Operator, Destination airport, Operator]
27-Jan-2020 23:05 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Location, Source, Narrative]
25-May-2021 18:07 Dr. John Smith Updated [Operator, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
25-May-2021 21:15 Yelush Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Location, Operator]

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