AR banner
Search Tips Advanced Search
Back to Top

• Kracker Archive
• Allied Losses
• Archiwum Polish
• Paradie Canadian
• Searchable Lists

Info LogoAdd to or correct this story with a few clicks.
Archive Report: Allied Forces

Compiled from official National Archive and Service sources, contemporary press reports, personal logbooks, diaries and correspondence, reference books, other sources, and interviews.
Check our Research databases: Database List


We seek additional information and photographs. Please contact us via the Helpdesk.

Coastal Command crest
07.11.1942 224 Squadron Liberator III FK245 XB:C Flt Sgt. Crabtree

Operation: Anti-Shipping

Date: 7th November 1942 (Saturday)

Unit No: 224 Squadron, Coastal Command

Type: Liberator III

Serial: FK245

Code: XB:C

Base: RAF Beaulieu

Location 1 mile short of RAF Beaulieu

Pilot: Flt Sgt. Kenneth Crabtree 1378372 RAFVR Age 31. KiA

Pilot: Sgt. Ronald Sydney Horsley 1377433 RAFVR Age 31. KiA

Flt Eng: Sgt. Kenneth Edward Hunt 1274114 RAFVR Age 20. KiA

Nav: Sgt. Arthur William Colston 925920 RAFVR Age 20. KiA

WOp/Air Gnr: Flt Sgt Eric Simonds Bayley 1057894 RAFVR Age 32. KiA

WOp/Air Gnr: Sgt. Roland William James Harrison 1124085 RAFVR Age 22. KiA

WOp/Air Gnr: Sgt. Henry Rupert Jennings 920231 RAFVR Age 24. KiA


Taking off 08:49 hrs on an Anti-Shipping patrol.

On final approach to RAF Beaulieu the aircraft crashed one mile short from the runway at 19:30 hrs. The Squadron ORB provides no information other than the aircraft crashed on landing and subsequently exploded.

Geoffrey Goodwin has contacted Aircrew Remembered. His mother was a good friend of Sgt. Henry R. Jennings’ sister Eva, whose explanation was that the aircraft had intended to land in Cornwall after the mission due to low fuel level. This turned out to be impossible due to fog at the airfield in Cornwall, so the aircraft diverted to Beaulieu but ran out of fuel before it could land. It should be noted that this explanation has not been corroborated.

A interesting and informative video entitled "Discovering WW2 Relics at RAF Beaulieu" has been filmed by Marc Heighway which speaks of Flt Sgt. Crabtree and Sgt. Hunt along with the history of RAF Beaulieu and what remains today. The video time stamps for the mentions are:

  • 5 mins 17 seconds
  • 7 mins 45 seconds
  • 15 mins 46 seconds

Burial details

Left and middle: Images of grave markers for Flt Sgt. Crabtree and Sgt. Hunt courtesy of Marc Heighway; right: marker for Sgt. Jennings courtesy Steve Hunnisett.

Flt Sgt. Kenneth Crabtree. Boldre Churchyard (St John). Row 1, Grave 4. Son of Frank Crabtree and Rose Olive Crabtree of Bingley, Yorkshire. Husband of Ida Crabtree of Bingley, Yorkshire, England. Grave inscription reads: "Rest In Peace".

Sgt. Ronald Sydney Horsley. Coulsdon Churchyard (St John). Grave 538. Husband of Ethel Horsley and father of Malcolm and Anne of Tollers Lane, Old Coulsdon, Surrey, England.

Sgt. Kenneth Edward Hunt. Boldre Churchyard (St John). Row 1, Grave 2. Born in the 2nd quarter of 1922 in Camberwell, Greater London. Son of Edward and Dorothy Lilian olive (née Jury) Hunt of Camberwell, Greater London, England. His mother predeceased him in 1935. Brother to Pamela Dorothy (née Grady) Hunt (1925-1997).

Sgt. Arthur William Colston. Bristol Cemetery (Arnos Vale). Plot RR, Grave 760. Son of William and Clara Colston of Southville, Bristol, England.

Flt Sgt. Eric Simonds Bayley. Manchester Southern Cemetery, Section S. C of E, Grave 5973. Son of George Henry and Martha Florence Bayley of Manchester. Husband of Ida Bayley of Higher Crumpsall, Manchester, England.

Sgt. Roland William James Harrison. Burnley Cemetery, Grave A 10305. Born on the 18th September 1920 in Burnley, Lancashire. Son of William Harold and Clara (née Pilkington) Harrison and husband to Doris (née Thornber) Harrison from Burnley, Lancashire, England.

Sgt. Henry Rupert Jennings. Charlton Cemetery, Greenwich. Section S (2nd Cons.) Grave 599. Son of Henry Hough Jennings and Eva Florence Jennings of Greenwich, London, England.

Researched by Steve Hunnisett for Aircrew Remembered - April 2019 and dedicated to the relatives of this crew. Thanks to Marc Heighway for the grave marker images for Flt Sgt. Crabtree, Sgt. Hunt and for the link to his RAF Beaulieu video. (Oct 2020). Thanks to Geoffrey Goodwin for an explanation as to the cause of the aircraft loss. (May 2023)

Other sources listed below:

RS 03.05.2023 - Addition of an explanation for the aircraft loss.

Pages of Outstanding Interest
History Airborne Forces •  Soviet Night Witches •  Bomber Command Memories •  Abbreviations •  Gardening Codenames
CWGC: Your Relative's Grave Explained •  USA Flygirls •  Axis Awards Descriptions •  'Lack Of Moral Fibre'
Concept of Colonial Discrimination  •  Unauthorised First Long Range Mustang Attack
RAAF Bomb Aimer Evades with Maquis •  SOE Heroine Nancy Wake •  Fane: Motor Racing PRU Legend
Sources used by us in compiling Archive Reports include: Bill Chorley - 'Bomber Command Losses Vols. 1-9, plus ongoing revisions', Dr. Theo E.W. Boiten and Mr. Roderick J. Mackenzie - 'Nightfighter War Diaries Vols. 1 and 2', Martin Middlebrook and Chris Everitt - 'Bomber Command War Diaries', Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Tom Kracker - Kracker Luftwaffe Archives, Michel Beckers, Major Fred Paradie (RCAF) and MWO François Dutil (RCAF) - Paradie Archive (on this site), Jean Schadskaje, Major Jack O'Connor USAF (Retd.), Robert Gretzyngier, Wojtek Matusiak, Waldemar Wójcik and Józef Zieliński - 'Ku Czci Połeglyçh Lotnikow 1939-1945', Archiwum - Polish Air Force Archive (on this site), Anna Krzystek, Tadeusz Krzystek - 'Polskie Siły Powietrzne w Wielkiej Brytanii', Franek Grabowski, Norman L.R. Franks 'Fighter Command Losses', Stan D. Bishop, John A. Hey MBE, Gerrie Franken and Maco Cillessen - Losses of the US 8th and 9th Air Forces, Vols 1-6, Dr. Theo E.W. Boiton - Nachtjagd Combat Archives, Vols 1-13. Aircrew Remembered Databases and our own archives. We are grateful for the support and encouragement of CWGC, UK Imperial War Museum, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Archives, New Zealand National Archives, UK National Archives and Fold3 and countless dedicated friends and researchers across the world.
Click any image to enlarge it

Click to add your info via ticket on Helpdesk •Click to let us know via ticket on Helpdesk• Click to buy research books from Amazon •Click to explore the entire site
If you would like to comment on this page, please do so via our Helpdesk. Use the Submit a Ticket option to send your comments. After review, our Editors will publish your comment below with your first name, but not your email address.

A word from the Editor: your contribution is important. We welcome your comments and information. Thanks in advance.

At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember them. - Laurence Binyon
All site material (except as noted elsewhere) is owned or managed by Aircrew Remembered and should not be used without prior permission.
© Aircrew Remembered 2012 - 2024
Last Modified: 30 March 2024, 06:20

Monitor Additions/Changes?Click to be informed of changes to this page. Create account for first monitor only, thereafter very fast. Click to close without creating monitor