Accident Hawker Hurricane Mk I L1985,
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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 74121
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Date:Wednesday 6 September 1939
Type:Silhouette image of generic HURI model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Hawker Hurricane Mk I
Owner/operator:56 (Punjab) Sqn RAF
Registration: L1985
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:Manor Farm, Hintlesham, Babergh, Suffolk, England -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Departure airport:RAF North Weald, Essex
Destination airport:RAF North Weald
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
In a tragic incident that entered the folklore of the wartime RAF as "The Battle of Barking Creek" two Hurricanes of No.56 Sqn were shot down on September 6, 1939 in error by Spitfires of No.74 Sqn. The commander of 74 Sqn Adolph MALAN saw in front of him machines of both young pilots, and because he was firmly convinced that they were German Messerschmitt 109s, issued the order to attack. His pilots Vincent BYRNY and John FREEBORN, obeyed and opened fire.

One of the Hurricane pilots (P/O ROSE in Hurricane L1980) survived uninjured, but the pilot of L1985 was struck in the back of the head by a bullet and probably died instantly. At this early stage of the war RAF fighter planes were not fitted with head armour. The Hurricane spiralled down and crashed at Manor Farm, Hintlesham, Suffolk, about 5 miles from Ipswich.

The alert which caused two squadrons of Hurricanes and three of Spitfires to be "scrambled" turned out to be a false alarm. P/O Montague Leslie HULTON-HARROP was the first RAF fighter pilot to die in World War Two. R.I.P.


1. Royal Air Force Aircraft L1000-L9999 (James J. Halley, Air Britain, 1978 p 14)
2. National Archives (PRO Kew) File AIR 81/5:

Revision history:

29-Apr-2010 16:14 angels one five Added
29-Apr-2010 16:48 angels one five Updated [Narrative]
29-Apr-2010 16:56 angels one five Updated [Operator, Narrative]
18-Jun-2010 19:25 angels one five Updated [Narrative]
26-Nov-2010 07:11 Anon. Updated [Registration, Source]
03-Jan-2012 06:31 Uli Elch Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Operator, Location, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
03-Jan-2012 13:40 Nepa Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Operator, Source]
10-Jan-2012 15:54 angels one five Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Source]
12-Jan-2012 13:32 Nepa Updated [Operator, Source]
22-Jan-2012 19:37 angels one five Updated [[Operator, Source]]
26-Feb-2013 20:28 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Operator, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Location, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
04-Apr-2013 13:44 Nepa Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Departure airport]
27-May-2013 05:20 Nepa Updated [Operator]
04-Aug-2013 07:06 JINX Updated [Operator]
14-Oct-2013 16:32 JINX Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Departure airport]
08-Nov-2013 23:20 angels one five Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Registration, Operator, Total fatalities, Location, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
09-Nov-2013 23:21 angels one five Updated [Narrative]
01-Apr-2015 19:07 Jixn Updated [Operator]
19-Apr-2015 22:35 angels one five Updated [Operator, Narrative]
09-May-2015 11:07 Angel dot comma Updated [Time, Operator]
06-Jan-2016 15:10 JINX Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Operator]
07-Jan-2016 20:23 Django Updated [Time, Operator]
11-Jan-2018 09:47 Laurent Rizzotti Updated [Aircraft type]
20-Apr-2018 19:32 Dr. John Smith Updated [Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
01-Jun-2019 16:23 Dr. John Smith Updated [Source, Narrative]
25-Jul-2019 13:40 Nepa Updated [Operator, Operator]
08-Sep-2019 08:54 Nepa Updated [Location, Destination airport, Source, Narrative, Operator]
13-Apr-2022 00:28 angels one five Updated [Location, Narrative]
18-Nov-2022 21:41 Dr. John Smith Updated [Location, Source, Narrative, Category]
12-Apr-2024 09:59 Nepa Updated [Location, Operator]

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