Accident Supermarine Spitfire LF Mk XVI TE253, Friday 3 January 1947
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Date:Friday 3 January 1947
Type:Silhouette image of generic SPIT model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Supermarine Spitfire LF Mk XVI
Owner/operator:691 Sqn RAF
Registration: TE253
MSN: CBAF.11392
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:Tor Dean Farm, Dean Prior, Buckfastleigh, Dartmoor, Devon, England -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Departure airport:RAF Chivenor, Barnstaple, Devon
Destination airport:
TE253: Spitfire LF. XVI, MSN CBAF 11392. Built at CBAF (Castle Bromwich Aircraft Factory) with Merlin M266 engine. To 9MU RAF Cosford, Shropshire 16-5-45. To 587 Squadron 25-7-45. To 691 Squadron 20-6-46 at RAF Weston Zoyland, Bridgwater, Somerset. Moved with squadron to RAF Chivenor, Barnstaple, Devon 4-10-46

Written off (destroyed) 3-1-47 when hit ground in cloud at Tor Dean Farm, Dean Prior. Buckfastleigh, Dartmoor, Devon. Pilot killed. It is believed that the pilot lost control of the aircraft while flying in cloud on instruments. The Spitfire then got into an unrecoverable spin, dived into the ground out of cloud. and was destroyed on impact.

According to a contemporary newspaper report ("Western Morning News", Saturday 4 January 1947):

Spitfire Crash Near Buckfastleigh
The pilot of an R.A.F. Spitfire, W.O Green, was killed yesterday when his machine crashed in a field on Tor Dean Farm, Dean Prior. Buckfastleigh. An inquest will be held at Buckfastleigh today. The body was found some distance from the wrecked 'plane"

The National Probate Calendar records that he died near Harbourneford, Devonshire. (Which is 3 miles south west of Buckfastleigh). The North Devon Journal of March 4th 1948 reported the unveiling of a memorial to him at Heanton Church, and that he was killed in a flying accident in January 1947. The inquiry into his death was held at Totnes, Devon, in the first quarter of1947 (=between 1-1-47 and 31-3-47)

Crew of Spitfire TE253:
Pilot II (W/O) (1808285) Anthony Charles GREEN (Pilot) RAFVR: killed on active service 3-1-47.
Buried at St. Augustine Churchyard, Heanton Punchardon, North Devon District, Devon, England

Note that the rank of the pilot is listed by some sources (such as the CWGC - see link #6) as "Pilot II" and others (such as the "Western Morning News" of 4-1-47) as "Warrant Officer". This discrepancy was an anomaly of the 1946 revision to RAF Personnel Rank Structures, which led to some personnel having two ranks at once.

Buckfastleigh is a market town and civil parish in Devon, England situated beside the Devon Expressway (A38) at the edge of the Dartmoor National Park. It is part of Teignbridge and, for ecclesiastical purposes, lies within the Totnes Deanery. It is 18 miles (29 km) east-northeast of Plymouth, 20 miles (32 km) southwest of Exeter


1. Royal Air Force Aircraft SA100-VZ999 (James J Halley, Air Britain, 1988)
2. Halley, James (1999). Broken Wings – Post-War Royal Air Force Accidents: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd. ISBN 0-85130-290-4.
3. Final Landings: A Summary of RAF Aircraft and Combat Losses 1946 to 1949 by Colin Cummings p.261
4. Western Morning News Saturday 4 January 1947
5. "RAF Write offs 1947": Air Britain Aeromilitaria No.2 1978:
6. ORB 691 Sqn RAF for the period 1-1-1946 to 28-2-1949: National Archives (PRO Kew) File AIR27/2545:


Revision history:

22-May-2023 20:16 Dr. John Smith Added
22-May-2023 20:21 Dr. John Smith Updated
24-May-2023 08:27 Nepa Updated
08-Sep-2023 12:35 Dr. John Smith Updated

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