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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 142003
Last updated: 12 May 2021
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Date:13-JUN-1951
Time:day
Type:Silhouette image of generic CNBR model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
English Electric Canberra B.1
Owner/operator:Rolls-Royce
Registration: VN850
MSN: 71004
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Bulwell Common, near Hucknall, Nottinghamshire -   United Kingdom
Phase: Approach
Nature:Test
Departure airport:Hucknall, Nottinghamshire [EGNA]
Destination airport:Hucknall, Nottinghamshire [EGNA]
Narrative:
EE Canberra B.Mk.1 VN850: Fourth Prototype Canberra, First flown at Samlesbury, Lancashire 20 December 1949, piloted by J W C Squier.

On 13 June 1951, English Electric Canberra B.1, VN850, bailed to Rolls-Royce in October 1950 for Avon engine tests, crashed on approach to Hucknall with engine fire, coming down just outside field perimeter, killing 29-year-old Rolls-Royce test pilot Richard B. Peach.

Part of 100 hour intensive flying trials on Avon RA7 engines, the starboard engine fitted with high energy ignition. One hour and 22 minutes after take off the pilot advised that the port engine was out and be was unable to re light.

He was cleared for a direct approach to the runway. At about 250ft on finals the aircraft was seen to drop the port wing, the nose then went down, the aircraft turned 45 degrees to port and the undercarriage was retracted but the flaps stayed down.

Climbing slightly and turning slowly to port the aircraft crossed the airfield before dropping the port wing again and the aircraft dived into the St.Alban's railway sidings at Bulwell Common railway station, Nottingham.

The speed had been allowed to become too low on the approach by a pilot inexperienced on type (3.15hrs) and he was unable to use the full thrust of the starboard engine to recover the situation.

It is likely that retraction of the flaps caused the final wing drop and dive. This was the first fatal accident involving a Canberra

Sources:

1. UK Flight Testing Accidents 1940 to 1971 ISBN 0 85130 311 1
2. Last Take-off: A Record of RAF Aircraft Losses 1950 to 1953 Colin Cummings p 146
3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_accidents_and_incidents_involving_military_aircraft_(1950%E2%80%931959)
4. http://www.thunder-and-lightnings.co.uk/memorial/entry.php?id=210
5. http://www.aviastar.org/gallery/054.html
6. https://www.pprune.org/aviation-history-nostalgia/98714-early-canberra-crash.html
7. National Archives (PRO Kew) File BT 233/55: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C424176
8. National Archives (PRO Kew) File AVIA 5/31/S2531: https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/C6578377
9. Canberra VN850 at Farnborough 9/50: https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/view/1664912
10. https://nottstalgia.com/forums/topic/4448-bulwell-common-or-is-it/?do=findComment&comment=51637
11. https://www.facebook.com/HUFTM/posts/2410667919232112
12. Biography of pilot: http://thetartanterror.blogspot.com/2008/03/richard-hb-peach-1922-1951.html

Media:

The Aviation Photo Company: Latest Additions &emdash; RAF English Electric Canberra VN850 (1950)

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
21-Jan-2012 17:55 Dr. John Smith Added
11-Apr-2013 18:41 Dr. John Smith Updated [Source, Embed code, Narrative]
28-Dec-2019 22:59 Dr. John Smith Updated [Source, Embed code]
19-Feb-2020 06:53 mamtor Updated [Date]
17-Jul-2020 13:38 Aerossurance Updated [Embed code]
29-Jan-2021 00:09 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Source, Narrative]
29-Jan-2021 23:28 Dr. John Smith Updated [Source, Narrative]
04-Feb-2021 18:57 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]

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