de Havilland Mosquito PF395, Dove Stone Moss, Peak District.

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de Havilland Mosquito PF395, Dove Stone Moss

22 October 1944. Mosquito PF395 of 571 Squadron was returning from a raid on Hamburg with other Mosquitoes of the RAF Fast Night-Striking Force.

On their way back across the North Sea, Flying Officer Ernest Scotland had to shut down the port (left) engine of PF395 when it began to overheat. Losing the engine meant the Mosquito lost speed and lagged behind the other returning Mosquitoes. Their crews pressed on back to base at RAF Oakington in Cambridgeshire, leaving Flying Officer Scotland and his navigator Sergeant Humphrey Soan, to straggle on, alone in the night.

Possibly because of the drain on just the one engine driven generator, electronics systems were affected, and Flying Officer Scotland transmitted that the radio navigation equipment had stopped working. Presumably Flying Officer Scotland’s radio packed in too, because that was the last anyone heard from them. Meanwhile a blanket of cloud moved in across England, covering the country and effectively severing all contact between the two airmen and everybody else.

PF395 was last seen circling Oldham, desperately dipping below the cloud base as Flying Officer Scotland tried to get a fix, well aware of the diminishing fuel. Without navigation equipment, they had overshot RAF Oakington by 120 miles. The circling took them back east and towards the unknown high ground of the Pennines, where PF395 finally crashed on the crags above Dovestone Reservoir, killing both airmen.

Details from Peakland Air Crashes – The North by Pat Cunningham (2006).

Photo of fragments of wreckage below the impact site;

Grid references from Cunningham (2014)
Impact SE 02570 03182, debris SE 02591 03179

PF395 crashed on the same day as this Halifax in the Lake District;

18 comments on “de Havilland Mosquito PF395, Dove Stone Moss, Peak District.
  1. ​favourite waste of time​ says:

    another gorgeous spot.. did you bring the flowers? or had they been left there…

  2. Ian D B says:

    Thanks Sonja. Just a few poppies plucked on the way up there.

  3. Neal. says:

    Was always my favourite plane especially after seeing 633 squadron as a wee lad.

  4. McAlister says:

    A great shot, enhanced by your thoughtful floral gesture.

  5. Chris Milne Photography says:

    Lovely perspective there. The poppies add a touch of colour.

  6. Kingsdude/Dave says:

    Excellent shot Ian – and a very sad story

  7. Tech Owl says:

    Another great info trail Ian. Lovely shot with the light on the poppies and the light and shade on the hillside

  8. Billy Currie says:

    Very sad story, the poppies add a lovely touch

  9. andyholmfirth says:

    Stunning with those poppies Ian.

  10. seansonofbig says:

    Nice pic. Poppies a nice touch…

  11. RamizPhotography says:

    This is quite a nice shot, the flowers add depth to it as well.

  12. Pleasureprinciple2012 says:

    Nice touch with the poppies Ian, that’s the thing with mossie crash sites, because of the wooden construction of these aircraft there is very little survives, usually engine, cockpit and undercarriage parts. Not much to show for the loss of two lives is there.

  13. c.patterson says:

    beautiful shot of a beautiful landscape,
    but a very sad story and the poppies give the shot real poignance.
    nice work Ian.

  14. Madbuster75 says:

    Beautiful shot of this somber scene.

  15. het broertje van.. says:

    Great picture and composition. excellent!!!!

  16. Ang Wickham says:

    Great those real poppies! A wonderful touch of life and presence in this scene. And a beautiful scene too. Very sad tale for the poor pilot, who was ultimately doing the correct thing in looking after a bad engine.

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