Taylorcraft Auster AOP.6 TW582, 664 (AOP) Squadron, RAF Hucknall
crashed Otterburn, Northumberland on 11th September 1955
|Position||Rank/Title||Full Name||Age||Service Number||Injury|
|Pilot||Lt||Anthony Michael Bates||24||426578||Fatal|
664(AOP) Squadron were on detachment from RAF Hucknall to take part in artillery shoots over the Otterburn range during the month of August 1955, which ran over into early September.
On 11th September 1955 Lt Anthony Michael Bates was returning from one of the shoots when he buzzed the small airstrip from which he was operating. Lt Bates climbed away steeply until approximately 100ft above the ground when he commenced a steep climbing turn to port. Suddenly the nose dropped and the aircraft went into a steep dive from which it failed to recover. The aircraft crashed close to the airfield but did not explode or catch fire, sadly Lt Bates was killed on impact.
The crash was subject to an investigation and the main cause being a stall whilst flying at a height of 150/200ft. The contributory cause was the pilot commencing a turn in a steep climb.
Anthony Michael Bates was the son of Mr Frank Bates, managing director of Auster Aircraft Limited, and he played a significant part in the flying trials of the Auster AOP.9.
The Crash Site
The precise location is unknown but it is believed to be on the hillside immediately to the east of the airfield.