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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 15
Last updated: 14 October 2021
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Time:18:30 LT
Type:Silhouette image of generic DOVE model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
de Havilland DH.104 Dove 1
Registration: G-AJOU
MSN: 04058
Fatalities:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:near Saint-Bauzile, Ardèche -   France
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Non-Scheduled/charter/Air Taxi
Departure airport:Croydon Airport (EGCR)
Destination airport:Cannes (LFMD)
On May 13, 1948, Lady Hartington and Lord Fitzwilliam were flying from Paris to the French Riviera for a vacation aboard a de Havilland DH.104 Dove. The twin engine aircraft left Croydon in the early afternoon for Paris with eight passengers and a crew of two. Six passengers disembarked in Paris and the aircraft took off around 15:30 LT bound for Cannes, reaching an altitude of 10,000 feet (3,000 m). Approximately one hour into the flight, radio contact was lost with the plane when it entered the region near Vienne which was also close to the center of a storm. The plane's four occupants endured twenty minutes of severe turbulence which bounced their small plane up and down as much as several thousand feet at a time.

When they finally cleared the clouds, they instantly discovered the plane was in a dive and moments away from impact, and they attempted to pull up. The stress of the turbulence coupled with the sudden change of direction tore loose one of the wings, followed by both engines and finally the tail. The plane's fuselage then spun into the ground seconds later, coming to rest nose down in a ravine after striking terrain at Plateau du Coiron, near Saint-Bauzile, Ardèche, France. Lady Hartington was instantly killed along with Fitzwilliam, pilot Peter Townshend, and navigator Arthur Freeman.


1. El Litoral 14 May 1948, p1
2. National Archives (PRO Kew) File BT 217/2397:
6. Schenectady Gazette May 15, 1948

Revision history:

13-Jan-2008 19:59 W.Fischdick Added
31-Jan-2008 04:12 JINX Updated
16-Mar-2010 16:02 TB Updated [Other fatalities, Location, Phase, Nature, Source, Narrative]
16-Apr-2010 06:25 dlewis Updated [Date, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Nature, Source, Narrative]
16-Apr-2010 09:33 Anon. Updated [Date]
04-Aug-2010 05:09 TB Updated [Time, Phase, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Damage, Narrative, Plane category, ]
13-Feb-2015 16:29 TB Updated [Time, Source]
12-Dec-2019 19:02 Dr. John Smith Updated [Operator, Location, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative]
13-Dec-2019 09:05 TB Updated [Operator, Location, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative]

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