Battle of Britain English Channel aircraft wrecks

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Alte Hase, Jan 8, 2012.

  1. Alte Hase

    Alte Hase Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Messages:
    236
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Hi all.

    I was curious to know, has a survey of the English Channel ever been done to locate or record the many aircraft that crashed into the Channel during the Battle of Britain? Has any historical society or similar organization ever had an effort to recover any airframes?

    Would be interesting to find out!
     
  2. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2009
    Messages:
    2,336
    Likes Received:
    405
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Motor Mechanic
    Location:
    Lancashire
  3. herman1rg

    herman1rg Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2008
    Messages:
    1,150
    Likes Received:
    70
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Strangely I was thinking the same thing earlier today.
     
  4. Edgar Brooks

    Edgar Brooks Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    727
    Likes Received:
    41
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Occupation:
    professionally retired
    Location:
    High Wycombe, England (home of the Mosquito)
    Very unlikely, and very dangerous. The Channel is the busiest shipping lane around Britain, and can be one of the roughest, with regard to the weather. The prevailing winds are westerlies, so the weather travels up the channel, being squeezed, all the time, by the narrowing "funnel." Remember what happened to the 16th century Spanish Armada, and the D-day Mulberry harbours in June 1944. A few years ago, an attempt was made to find Glenn Miller's aircraft, after the position was fairly well pinpointed, because there was (allegedly) a briefcase containing some unplayed music. All they found was an engine, which might have come from the type of aircraft, but everything else had corroded and vanished without trace. Aluminium doesn't survive well in salt water, especially when it's continually on the move.
    As the reappearance of the Spitfire and Dornier show, the shifting sands will sometimes reveal items, but can just as easily bury them. Further round the coast, things do still appear; during a 1980s visit to Binbrook, to view the Lightnings, our guide told us how they were often dropping aircraft into the North Sea, and fishermen were always claiming for damaged nets. He told, though, how one claim was refused, since they were able to point out that Lightnings had never carried black crosses on their wings, and the suggestion was made that they should enter their claim with the authorities in Berlin.
     
  5. Alte Hase

    Alte Hase Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Messages:
    236
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Those articles were really fascinating- thanks for posting them!

    It would be interesting if one could get hold of a general map showing where individual aircraft were reported to have gone down, just to see in what concentrations the wrecks are lying. How many aircraft are estimated to have gone down in the Channel? It certainly wasn't only during the Battle of Britain that aircraft were crashing in the Channel, lots of bombers and escort fighters from the latter part of the war went down there too, albeit further north.

    It kind of reminds me of the story of the recovery of Swissair 111 off Newfoundland. Apparently when salvage teams were recovering the wreck, they came across the wreck of a U-boat from the first world war, lying at the exact same position.
     
  6. Readie

    Readie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2011
    Messages:
    4,287
    Likes Received:
    50
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Plymouth, England
  7. dachshund

    dachshund New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2012
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    1
    This is a fascinating thread!
     
Loading...

Share This Page