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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 229249
Last updated: 29 November 2021
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Date:11-JUN-1940
Time:afternoon
Type:Silhouette image of generic L14 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Lockheed Hudson Mk I
Owner/operator:269 Squadron Royal Air Force (269 Sqn RAF)
Registration: P5131
MSN: UA-P
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 4
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Gulosen Fjord, Pienes Mill, Buvika, near Trondheim -   Norway
Phase: Combat
Nature:Military
Departure airport:RAF Sumburgh, Shetland Islands
Destination airport:
Narrative:
Lockheed Hudson Mk.I P5131 (UA-P) 269 Squadron, RAF: Written off (destroyed) when lost (Failed To Return) from combat operations on 11 June 1940. Of the crew of four, two were killed, one was captured and taken as a PoW, and the other evaded capture. According to the official Air Ministry File into the incident (File AIR 81/854): "Hudson P5131 lost over Trondheim Fjord, Norway, 11 June 1940. Sergeant A R Sherwood: interned in Sweden. Leading Aircraftman A Napier: prisoner of war. Temporary Sergeant J Craig and Sergeant G W Robson: report of deaths"

Airborne at 11:30 from RAF Sumburgh, Shetland Islands as one of 12 Hudsons led by Wing Commander Pearce on an operation to Trondheim, Norway. Their mission was to attack the enemy battleships "Scharnhorst", "Gneisenau", and "Admiral Hipper" in Trondheim harbour. The English planes, released 36 x 250 kilos bombs from high altitude above the harbor in Trondheim. Two of the ships were hit, but the damage was minor. Over the city of Trondheim they were met by heavy flak/AAA, as well as 4 x Bf.109E from 11/JG.77 and a Bf.110 (M8+NH) from 3/ZG.76. These had took off from Værnes to intercept.

269 Squadron lost two Hudsons in this air battle above Gulosen Fjord (N7361/UA-G and P5131/UA-P). Sgt. John Craig was shot dead by one of the five attacking Messerschmitts from Værnes, while hanging in his parachute, descending after baling out. His body disappeared in to the sea. Sgt. Robson went down in the sea with the plane, the rest of the crew managed to bail out. According to a rough translation into English of a published Norwegian source (see link #7 for the original Norwegian text): "There were 12 x Hudsons taking off from Sumburgh towards Trondheim. Over the city they were met by heavy flak, as well as 4 x Bf.109E from 4./II./JG.77 and a Bf.110 (M8 + NH) from 3./ZG.76. These took off from Værnes. Ltn.Georg Schirmböck claimed the shooting down of P5131/UA-P

The English aircraft under the command of Wing Commander Pearce, released 36 pieces of 250 kilos bombs from high altitude above the harbor in Trondheim. There were the Scharnhorst battle cruisers, 3 fighters and a couple of supply vessels. Two of the ships were hit, but the damage was minor.

P5131/UA-P spiralled from high altitude, right in the sea outside Pienes mill in Buvika. Threeof the crew jumped from the aircraft by parachute, while Sgt Craig took the plane down. Sgt. Robson landed in the sea and was never found, Sgt Napier landed in the Øyåsmarka near Perstu, but was taken by the Germans at Blekesmark.

Alex Sherwood, who landed at Raudmyra on the Kvernberget in Buvika, eventually got to Sweden via Hølonda-Kvål-Singsås and Selbu, with good help from many Norwegians. He spent 9 days on that trip, arriving in Sweden on June 20."

Crew of Hudson P5131:
Sergeant John Craig, RAFVR 759047, age 20, posted 11/06/1940, as missing, believed killed in action
Sergeant George W. Robson, RAF 580228, posted 11/06/1940, as missing, believed killed in action
Sergeant (Navigator) Alex Sherwood - evaded capture, escaped to neutral Sweden, repatriated from there
Leading Aircraftman (Air Gunner) A. Napier, RAF 614218; survived, captured, taken as a PoW

As no trace was ever found of the two crew fatalities, they are commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. The crash site is today a war grave. The memorial was moved to a new and better location in 2008

Sources:

1. Royal Air Force Aircraft P1000-P9999 (James J Halley, Air Britain, 1978)
2. National Archives (PRO Kew) File AIR 81/854: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C14502660
3. https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/1085176/craig,-john/
4. https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2940459/robson,-george-william/
5. Ross McNeill, Coastal Command Losses of the Second World War, Volume 1 (1939-1941)
6. http://www.epibreren.com/ww2/raf/269_squadron.html#1106
7. https://tihlde.org/~ktsorens/flyvrak/gaulosen.html


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
22-Sep-2019 22:40 Dr. John Smith Added
24-Sep-2019 13:11 stehlik49 Updated [Operator]

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