Vickers Wellington L7845

Muckle Cairn, Upper Glenesk, Angus



PAGE 3:  Air Crew Photos / Thomas Holman and Joseph Weatherson


BELOW: The rear gunner who escaped with injuries was:


thomas william holman - air gunner - in his flying suit

Photo: Courtesy, Trev Holman

As the aircraft plunged toward the ground, Sgt Holman decided there wasn't enough time to get out of the gun turret, so he faced the guns rearward as the backplate would support him on impact. This action saved his life, although his arm was broken, his face badly cut and he had sustained damage to his back.

Another aircraft in the vicinity spotted Sgt Holman on the ground.1 He was thrown a packet of 'Players' (cigarettes). After this, the pilot kept circling and then flying in a straight line—pointing the direction to walk to the nearest village.

By the time Sgt Holman reached hospital, his arm had set badly and had to be re-broken and re-set. Eventually, the arm healed. However, he could no longer turn his wrist enough to use the guns on board, so he was grounded and sent to various parts of the British Isles and over to India where he would set up runways.

Ex Sgt Holman was originally from Exeter. In his latter years, he lived in the Wirral. He passed away peacefully on 17 January 2011, aged 90 years. "He is Greatly Missed"

May his name be remembered by all those who owe him a debt of gratitude they can never repay.

The above photo and details of Sgt Holman's experience was kindly provided by one of his sons, Trev Holman.

Many thanks to Mr Holman snr for permitting the use of this photo.


1. ...spotted Sgt Holman on the ground: Desmond Huxley on a ferry flight en route to Prestwick in a Defiant spotted Sgt Holman in the wreckage of the Wellington and received a Commendation for his actions. Sadly, Desmond Huxley was killed while working with Fairey Aviation testing a Halifax on the 18th March 1944.

[This information was kindly provided by David Huxley.]


(Memorial photos below)

BELOW: OBS Sgt Joseph Weatherson, RAFVR, in his flying coat, and smoking the pipe that he had just begun to use.

joseph weatherson in flying coat with pipe


joseph weatherson in raf dress uniform

ABOVE: Sgt Weatherson in his RAF dress uniform.

Above photos kindly provided by Sgt Weatherson's sister. 




BELOW: On 25 October 2013, relatives of Sgt Weatherson visited the crash site and placed a memorial plaque at this location.



Note of Thanks: We desire to express our sincere appreciation to Gary Nelson for all his help in preparing us for this visit to Muckle Cairn and for his much valued assistance along the way. (Meredith Barnes and Glynis Symes).



 Approaching the crash site on Muckle Cairn where Sgt Weatherson and other members of this Wellington crew died on the 9 August 1942.


approaching the crash site where sgt weatherson and other crew of this wellington died


Photo © 2013 Gary Nelson


Permission to publish kindly granted by Meredith Barnes and Glynis Symes



BELOW: The memorial plaque to Sgt Weatherson placed by the wreckage on Muckle Cairn.


The remembrance ceremony was completed to the tunes of Highland Cathedral and The Mist Covered Mountains, played on the bagpipes by Gary Nelson of North Tyneside Pipe Band.


the memorial plague to sgt weatherson placed beside the wreckage on muckle cairn


Photo © 2013 Meredith Barnes / Glynis Symes
with Gary Nelson


Permission to publish kindly granted by Meredith Barnes and Glynis Symes



BELOW:  Close-up view of the memorial plaque.


close-up view of the memorial plaque


Photo © 2013 Meredith Barnes / Glynis Symes
with Gary Nelson


Permission to publish kindly granted by Meredith Barnes and Glynis Symes





BELOW:  'A' Flight, No. 3 Squadron, 5 Initial Training Wing, April, 1941

A Flight No 3 Squadron 5 I.T.W. April 1941 

BELOW: Squadron photograph


squadron photograph 



BELOW:  Enlargement of Group (from left to centre)


photo enlargement - left hand side of group 



BELOW:  Enlargement of Group (from centre to right) 


photo enlargement - right hand side of group 


Sgt Joseph Weatherson appears at the right hand end of the middle row.


 Above photos kindly provided by Sgt Weatherson's sister.




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