Sea Spitfire SW826

The Drum, Glenlatterach, Moray

 
     
 
lefttop
 

 

 

Advertisements

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aircraft Type Photo

 

BELOW: A preserved Royal Navy Supermarine Sea Spitfire (Seafire) showing the wings folded for storage on aircraft carriers.

 

F XVII SX336 Kennet Aviation

 

RN Seafire with wings folded

 

Photo: 2006 'Kogo': Released by the author to the public domain

 

 

 

 

Aircraft Type and Background

 

RN FAA Supermarine Sea Spitfire ('Seafire') XV / SW826

 


 

A military carrier-borne fighter aircraft operated by the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy.

The Supermarine Seafire (official name, Sea Spitfire) was the Royal Navy's version of the Spitfire; later versions being specially adapted with folding wings and arrestor hook for use on aircraft carriers.

The first FAA Seafires were modified versions of the land-based Spitfire Marks Va and Vb, renamed as Seafire Mark II. These variants did not have folding wings. Unfortunately, the Spitfire was never really designed to be converted to a deck-landing Seafire. Modified Seafires found carrier approaches difficult and suffered often from landing gear collapses. Again, at times, the arrestor hooks failed to catch the deck wire and would recoil into the aircraft fuselage damaging the airframe.

The Seafires were equipped with two 20mm cannon and four .303in machine guns in the wings. The could also carry a 500lb bomb load. (Later post-war variants (Mk XVII) were equipped with rocket projectiles.)

In November 1943, the first Seafires with folding wings to enter service with the FAA was the Mark F III, soon to be replaced by the Mark L III. These types made possible below-deck storage. These variants were equipped with Merlin engines.

In May 1945, the first Seafires equipped with Griffon engines appeared. These were the Mark XVs--the type featured on this page. By this time, however, the war in Europe had been brought to a successful conclusion.

The Seafire continued in active service with the Fleet Air Arm (FAA) until 1951, and served with the RNVR until the type was decommissioned in 1954.

Preserved versions of the Seafire can still be seen seen at air displays and in museums today.

 


 

BELOW: An RCAF Supermarine Sea Spitfire or  Seafire

 

An RCAF Supermarine Sea Spitfire or Seafire

 

Photo: Original source unknown

 

 

 

 

Aircraft Accident Details

 

At the time of this accident, 'Seafire' SW826 of 766 Squadron FAA was taking part in formation flying with three other Seafires over the moors SW of Elgin. While involved in a crossover manoeuvre at 1,000ft, two Seafires collided (SW904 and SW826). The collision destroyed the cockpit of Seafire SW826 and resulted in the death of Seafire SW904's pilot, F. J. Curtis, when his aircraft crashed into the ground near Easterton Farm [map].

 

Although his cockpit had been destroyed in the accident, the pilot of Seafire SW826 managed to bail out of the aircraft1 safely. The pilot landed in moorland near Glenlatterach Reservoir and close to a Girl Guide camp. As soon as he landed, some of the Guides ran over to help the injured pilot. One of these GuidesGeorgie Paterson (14)attended to the pilot's broken ankle. Then, together with others from the group, they carried the pilot on a stretcher back to their camp until an ambulance arrived.

 

More detailed account here, as told by former P.O. Raymond Walker (pilot).

 


 

Footnote

 

1 bail out of the aircraft...: Since the  Seafire was not equipped with an ejection system, the pilot would  have needed to scramble clear of the cockpit manually.

 

 

 

 

 

Aircraft Pilot Casualty

 

The pilot who bailed out safely in this incident was:

 

Petty Officer Raymond Walker RN, HMS Fulmar.

 

 

 

 

 

Crash Site Photos

 

BELOW: One of the few remaining parts from the airframe of RN Supermarine Seafire SW826.

 

One of the few remaining parts from the airframe of RN Supermarine Seafire SW826.

 

Photo: © 2016 Suzanne Alexander

 


 

BELOW: Scattered fragments from the wrecked Seafire.

 

Scattered fragments from the wrecked Seafire.

 

Photo: © 2016 Suzanne Alexander

 


 

BELOW: Another view of the Seafire fragments lying in the debris field at The Drum, near Glenlatterach Resr.

 

Another view of the Seafire fragments lying in the debris field at The Drum, near Glenlatterach Resr.

 

Photo: © 2016 Suzanne Alexander

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 Search Website

Air Crash Sites-Scotland

Custom Search

 

Search here for: aircraft types | crash sites | crew names | hills or mountains

Please enter desired aircraft type, crew name, or location in search box.
 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TOP OF PAGE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Crash Date / Site

 

Page last updated: 8 April 2016.

 

(Wreckage photos added.)

 


 

Accident Date: 5 Jul 1948

 

Accident Site:

The Drum (225m)

(near Glenlatterach Reservoir)

 

Region: Moray

 

Nearest town or village:

Glenlatterach [map] 

 

Nearest large town:

Elgin (N) [map]

 

OS Grid Refs:

Seafire SW826: 28 / 18-53

Seafire SW904: 28 /  50-56

 

GPS Ref. N/A

 

Present Condition: Only a few small pieces of the wreck remain onsite.

 

 

 

Aircraft Details

 

Registration or Serial: SW826

 

Operator:  RN / FAA (766 Naval Air Squadron)

 

Operating Station: RNAS Lossiemouth / HMS Fulmar (or RAF Milltown); associated with RAF Lossiemouth.

 

Station Location: Lossiemouth [map], Scotland.

 

Current Station Status: Operational Military Air Base

 

Current Station Name: RAF Lossiemouth

 


 

Principal airport data courtesy of John Woodside, A Catalogue of UK Airfields

 

 

 

 

Hill Walking Links

 

(Hillwalking and Mountaineering)

WalkingScotland (The official Walking site of Scotland's national tourism organisation)

Walking Scotland's Mountains

 

 

Other Outdoor Activities

 

Backpacking and Backpackers

Backpacking in Britain

Backpacking Lite

Cicerone (Backpacking Guides for Walking in the UK)

The Backpackers Club

UK Backpacking Websites

 

 

Kayaking and Canoeing

Kayak Scotland (Sea Kayaking in Scotland)

Kayaking at Active Scotland (Various venues)

Sea Kayak Scotland

 

Mountain Biking

 

 

Rock Climbing and Abseiling

Abseiling in Perthshire

Abseiling Scotland (Various venues)

Climbing, Scrambling and Abseiling Scotland

Mountain Sports Courses and Paddle Sports Courses at Glenmore Lodge

Rock Climbing at Scottish National Outdoor Training Centre (Skills Courses and Qualifications Courses)

Rock Climbing in Scotland (Rock Climbing Areas)

UKClimbing.com (UKC) (Includes Abseiling / Rappelling)

 

Trekking and Hiking

Gairloch Trekking Centre (Pony Trekking in the Scottish Highlands)

Pony and Quad Treks (North Wales)

Ramblers (UK)

Ramblers (Worldwide Holidays)

Trekking Britain

Walking and Hiking

 


 

Emergency Services Link

Register for Text 999 Emergency Service

If you cannot make voice calls, you can now contact the 999 emergency services by SMS text from your mobile phone.

 

 

 

 
righttop