10 May 1916 – Accidents continue to take their toll

The primitive nature of aircraft and inadequate training continue to plague the RFC and today resulted in four more accidents.

Captain Evelyn Paget Graves of 20 Squadron RFC took off to test a new Martinsyde (7260). When coming into land he suddenly sideslipped and crashed, wrecking the aircraft. Captain Graves escaped relatively unscathed.

Lieutenant Christopher Hutchinson Jenkins and Sergeant Stanley Appleton of 9 Squadron were testing their newly rigged BE2c (4088) when they lost a wheel in mid air. Unsurprisingly they crashed on landing but neither were badly hurt.

2nd Lieutenant Stanley Burdett Lee and 2nd Lieutenant Ernest John Dennis Townesend of 21 Squadron RFC were up testing their engine and carrying out a practice recce. Unfortunatelty they hit a hedge when their engine failed on approach to the airfield. Both escaped unhurt.

2nd Lieutenant Samuel John Sibley from 24 Squadron was hit by rifle fire from the ground on patrol in his DH2 (5962). He attempted to return home but was force to land just over the lines where he ran into trench and wiped off his undercarriage. Again he suffered only minor injuries

Not so lucky was Lieutenant Charles Douglas White MC, of 7 Reserve Squadron RFC who died of his injuries following a crash on 8 May at Netheravon. His Maurice Farman Shorthorn (7371) nose dived into ground.


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