Accident Blackburn R.B.3 Iris Mk III S1263,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 211042
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Date:Thursday 12 January 1933
Type:Blackburn R.B.3 Iris Mk III
Owner/operator:209 Sqn RAF
Registration: S1263
MSN: 870/2
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 9
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:Plymouth Sound, off Plymouth, Devon. -   United Kingdom
Phase: Landing
Departure airport:RAF Mountbatten, Plymouth, Devon
Destination airport:RAF Mountbatten
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
Blackburn Iris III S1263, 209 Squadron, RAF Mount Batten: In January 1930, 209 Squadron was formed at RAF Mount Batten, Plymouth, flying Blackburn Iris Mk.IIIs, at that time the largest flying boats to enter RAF service. A flight of 550 miles via Kent saw the first Iris Mk.III, S1263 named ‘Leda’, arrive at 3.15 pm on 15/1/30.

The second Iris III, S1264 arrived later and both departed for Reykjavik on the 22/6/30 to represent the UK at the Icelandic Parliament Millenary Celebrations. Only S1264 arrived, S1263 ‘Leda’ having suffered fuel contamination, but the return trip by S1264 did represent the first non-stop RAF flight between Iceland and the UK.

Written off (damaged beyond repair) 12/1/33 when sank following collision with dockyard launch after landing in Plymouth Sound, off Plymouth, Devon. Only one of the crew of nine was killed, but seven were injured, and one was unhurt:

L.A/C Alfred Dore Slatter (aged 20) drowned
Squadron Leader John Hugh Oscar Jones (pilot) injured
Corporal Henry Seward Beale Mace injured
L.A/C (Acting Corporal) Frederick Leonard Petch injured
L.A/C Ernest Alfred Fuller injured
L.A/C Francis Joseph Soper injured
AC.1 Norman William Watson injured
AC.1 James Douglas Frederick Williams injured
Sgt John Herbert Claude Saffery unhurt

S1263 was one of two aircraft (S1264 was the other) ordered from The Blackburn Aeroplane and Motor Co. Ltd, Brough, Yorkshire, to contract 812143/27. Delivered in January and June 1930 respectively.




Porthole (now in my possession) from my grandfather who was AC1 Norman Watson. The insert image was put there by my grandfather, but the whole photograph taken by me in 2014 after I was given it.


Blackburn Iris S1263, 209 Squadron, in 1932: Blackburn Iris Mk III S1263

Revision history:

14-May-2018 17:06 Dr. John Smith Added
14-May-2018 17:09 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]
31-Oct-2018 20:10 Nepa Updated [Operator, Location, Destination airport, Operator]
25-Jul-2020 16:26 Berny Updated [Photo]
21-May-2021 10:13 Cobar Updated [Source]

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