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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 266860
Last updated: 28 November 2021
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Date:18-JAN-1938
Time:
Type:Gloster Gladiator Mk 1
Owner/operator:RAF
Registration: K7940
MSN:
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:1
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:near Uckfield, Sussex -   United Kingdom
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Nature:Training
Departure airport:RAF Hornchurch, Essex
Destination airport:
Narrative:
On 18th January 1938, P/O Robert Stanford Tuck & F/O Adrian Hope-Boyd with Sgt Geoffrey Gaskell were practising formation flying when disaster struck over the fields of Uckfield, Sussex. The Gladiator aircraft had moved into a line-astern formation with F/O Hope-Boyd leading, followed by Gaskell and Tuck. Suddenly the biplanes were hit by rough air turbulence casuing Gaskell's aircraft to edge over to the left and fall back; Tuck's Gladiator was slightly above and behind Gaskell's. Tuck saw what was happening, but suddenly Gaskell's aircraft hauled up on to its tail and banked directly in front of Tuck's. There was no way of avoiding the aircraft from colliding. Tuck's aircraft propeller sheared through the fuselage of the Gladiator in front, just behind the cockpit and killed the unfortunate pilot. Both aircraft started to fall from the sky; Tuck fought to free himself from his cockpit. After several attempts to extricate himself from the cockpit, he finally was forced out by the centrifugal force. His parachute opened and he floated down to safety. Suddenly he noticed his white flying suit was covered in blood. He discovered that spurts of blood were shooting out from his throat. His right cheek had been lacerated by a bracing wire from the wing and had cut his right cheek from ear to chin. He stemmed the flow of blood and on landing was helped by some farm workers. Tuck remained in hospital for a week before returning to the squadron. Both Gladiators K7940 & K8014 crashed near Uckfield.

Sources:

Memory Booth at the Hornchurch Country Park Visitor Centre


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
18-Aug-2021 12:33 SPAGBOWLEWT Added

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