Accident English Electric Canberra B Mk 2 WH864, Monday 11 January 1954
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Date:Monday 11 January 1954
Type:Silhouette image of generic CNBR model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
English Electric Canberra B Mk 2
Owner/operator:231 OCU RAF
Registration: WH864
MSN: SH1621
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:1 mile West of Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Departure airport:RAF Bassingbourn, Cambridgeshire
Destination airport:RAF Bassingbourn, Cambridgeshire
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
EE Canberra B.Mk.2 WH864, 231 OCU RAF: Crashed and destroyed 11/1/1954 when dived into ground at night, one mile West of Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire. After some trouble starting an engine, the aircraft took off from RAF Bassingbourn, Cambridgeshire, and after acknowledging air traffic control, nothing further was heard from the crew. About 8 minutes after take off the aircraft dived into the ground in an inverted attitude. Both crew killed.

Pilot:Pilot Officer John Leonard Hoyle (aged 20) RAF killed.
Navigator: Flying Officer Michael Harry Webber RAF killed.

According to some sources, WH864 came down within the grounds (on the playing fields) of Bishops Stortford Boys College, which is located one mile west of the town


1. Halley, James (1999) Broken Wings – Post-War Royal Air Force Accidents Tunbridge Wells: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd. p.154 ISBN 0-85130-290-4.
2. Royal Air Force Aircraft WA100-WZ999 (James J Halley, Air Britain, 1983 p 53)
3. Category Five; A Catalogue of RAF Aircraft Losses 1954 to 2009 by Colin Cummings p.24-25
4. National Archives (PRO Kew) File BT233/193:

Revision history:

13-Jun-2008 09:31 JINX Added
07-Apr-2013 01:48 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Phase, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
12-Nov-2018 21:24 Nepa Updated [Operator, Operator]
08-Jan-2020 21:34 Dr. John Smith Updated [Operator, Location, Source, Narrative]
08-Jan-2020 22:47 stehlik49 Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Nature, Operator]
04-Apr-2020 21:23 Dr. John Smith Updated [Source]

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