Date: 11th March 1944 (Saturday)
Unit: No. 488 Squadron (motto: Ka ngarue ratau - 'We shake them') 150 Airfield HQ. 83 Group. 2 Tactical Air Force
Type: Mosquito NF.XIII
Base: RAF Bradwell Bay, Essex
Location: Airfield at RAF Bradwell Bay, Essex
Pilot: Fl/Sgt. John Anderson NZ/415234 RNZAF Age 31. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off at 13:30 hrs on a solo training flight.
During landing some 50 minutes later swung badly. He overcorrected and was in danger of over running the runway he decided to go round again but crashed when the undercarriage of HX461 struck hedge on the airfield perimeter and crashed, killing the pilot.
The court of enquiry was very critical that the pilot who had just been posted in from flying the Beaufighter with an Operational Training Unit and that this was his only 2nd solo flight in the Mosquito.
Fl/Sgt. John Anderson. Brookwood Military Cemetery. Grave 2.K.7. Born in Cardorian, Scotland on the 23rd September 1912. Moved to New Zealand with the Flock House Scheme (1) in 1929. Worked as a barman at the Club Hotel in Christchurch prior to enlisting. Enlisted as aircraft hand in the RNZAF on the 219th September 1940 at Auckland. Remusterd as a pilot for training on the 27th July 1942. Awarded his pilots badge on the 13th February 1943 and promoted to sergeant on the 09th April 1943. Embarked for England on the 11th May 1943. When in England trained on the Beaufighter with 51 Operational Training Unit before joining 488 squadron on the 07th March 1944. Son of James Fortune Anderson (2) and Elsie Margaret Anderson (nee Sonnenfelt - formerly of 5 Kaiser Friedrich Strasse, Germany), of Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand, brother to Margarethe Else and husband of Dorothy Anderson (nee Jewell), of Christchurch. New Zealand. 367 flying hours logged.
Memorial at RAF Bradwell
(1) Flock House Scheme - Flock House was an agricultural and farm training school near Bulls, which operated from 1924 to 1987. It was established for the training of young men, and later women, who were the offspring of British seamen who had been killed or wounded during World War One. Boys and girls were selected by an Advisory Committee in London, assisted by the New Zealand High Commission. Those meeting the criteria were offered free passage from Britain, clothing, pocket money, and six months (later one year) training at Flock House. Boys and girls were trained in a wide range of farming practices and domestic skills, with the aim of them eventually becoming farmers.
(2) 36 year od, James Fortune Anderson from Paisley, Scotland - Master of the 'SS Hazelwood' was sunk on the 19th October 1917 with the loss of all 32 hands. The SS Hazelwood sank rapidly following either a torpedo attack by UC-62 or hitting a sea mine, 22 miles west of St. Catherine’s on the Isle of Wight and eight miles south east of Anvil point. James Anderson is remembered at the Tower Hill memorial. A comprehensive report on that loss here.
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this pilot with thanks to Jenifer Lemaire and to the extensive research by Errol Martyn and his publications: “For Your Tomorrow Vols. 1-3”, Auckland Library Heritage Collection, AWMM, other sources as quoted below:
At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember
them. - Laurence
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