Gloster Meteors WH383 and WH384, Edgworth, Lancashire.

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Gloster Meteors WH383 and WH384, Edgworth, Lancashire

Taken on Scholes Height and looking towards Winter Hill.

Two Gloster Meteors of the RAuxAF crashed here while on exercise from their base in Cheshire on November 14th 1953. Presumably flying in formation and in low cloud, the two jets destroyed the stone wall as they flew into the hillside. Both pilots, Flight Lieutenant Anthony Basil Mercer and Flying Officer Arthur Michael Fletcher, were killed instantly.

The Royal Auxiliary Air Force is like the Territorial Army, civilians trained to support the RAF. 24 year old Flying Officer Fletcher was a development officer in civilian life, for instance. These Meteors were of 610 squadron, which had seen extensive action in the Battle of Britain before the squadron returned to its home in Cheshire, and their Spitfires were replaced with Gloster Meteors.

Although no remains are visible, the damaged wall is still there.

15 comments on “Gloster Meteors WH383 and WH384, Edgworth, Lancashire.
  1. *Psycho Delia* says:

    Love all of these shots..

  2. pasujoba says:

    Was that today Ian ?

  3. Ian D B says:

    Hi Paul, yeah, just popped out for a bit. Was raining / clouding over on and off, wasn’t expecting much, but the sun shone for the half hour I needed!

  4. andyholmfirth says:

    Don’t those early jets look so unreal.Something of the thunderbirds about them.

  5. sidewinder54 (Closed For Business) says:

    The focus is absolutely fantastic on this shot Ian… I have to agree with Andy regarding the early jets!!

  6. pasujoba says:

    Its very odd how the crashes appear to cluster.

  7. brooke.tabitha@yahoo.com {thanks, farewell} says:

    Interesting… this is a good shot too. Nice detail in the fore, Ian!

  8. ​favourite waste of time​ says:

    wonderful shot with the two poppied crosses in the lower corner — great compo that makes a powerful statement

  9. Billy Currie says:

    Very interesting as always, lovely countryside to be laid to rest.

  10. Pleasureprinciple2012 says:

    Very nice to see that someone has taken the trouble to remember these men with the poppy’s at the site.

  11. Anonymous says:

    amazing dof and composition
    very nice shot and a rich story behind it 😀

  12. Anonymous says:

    amazing dof and composition
    very nice shot and a rich story behind it 😀

  13. redrocker_9 says:

    I love the focus on the crosses Ian, very nice!

  14. Tony-H says:

    Thanks for posting Ian.

    610 Sqn were based at RAF Hooton Park on the Wirral, where the Vauxhall factory is now. I guess those "weekend warriors" considered the RAF to be the best flying club in the world in those days. Flying at several hundred knots these Lancashire fringes of the Pennines must come up really fast when approaching from the Lancashire plain. It’s no wonder so many pilots were caught out. 🙁

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