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1 Re: Aviation Archaeology - England by on November 23, 2006, 07:14:48 PM
sitio interesante en internet,  roncskutatas.hu   netlabor.hu  militaria-antik.hu   !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
2 Re: Aviation Archaeology - England by Administration on October 26, 2007, 10:38:12 AM
Lost at sea: New study of plane crash sites

Thousands of planes crashed into the sea around Britain, many during WWII. At the time the planes and many of their crew were presumed to be lost for ever. But today, more and more are being found, by divers; and increasingly as a result of dredging for sand and gravel.

The crash sites of military aeroplanes are given automatic protection under the 1986 Protection of Military Remains Act, meaning they should not be disturbed. The problem is that the location of the great majority of crash sites at sea is not known. Even known shipwreck sites have, on closer examination, recently been proved to be of aeroplanes

Around 20% of the sand and gravel used for construction in England and Wales is gathered by dredging out at sea. One unexpected result of a recent scheme for dredgers to report archaeological finds has been the routine discovery of plane crash sites, sometimes with human remains.

Euan McNeill of Wessex Archaeology explained �staff working for aggregate companies on board the dredgers and on the wharves where the sand and gravel is processed have been given help to identify archaeological finds so they know when to call the archaeologists. A web based reporting system means that there is prompt expert feedback. Even when finds are only identified on the wharves it is still possible to track back where the gravel was dredged from.� Planes identified this way include a Fleet Air Arm Supermarine Attacker, what is either an American B-25 or P-51 bomber, and a German Junkers JU-88 bomber.

When such discoveries are made, the marine aggregate operators follow a protocol that allows an Exclusion Zone to be set up around the site and dredging stops there. The possible presence of the remains of the crew and passengers and also unexploded munitions are assessed. This can put large areas of the seabed that are otherwise suitable for dredging out of bounds until further work can be done to see if the crash site can be found.�

McNeill added �Many families today are still touched by this issue. It represents a challenge, both ethical and logistical, for the marine aggregate industry and heritage professionals.�

As preliminary study of the issue by Wessex Archaeology has been commissioned by English Heritage, funded through the Aggregate Levy Sustainability Fund.

The first phase of this study is already underway. Wessex Archaeology are asking individuals and organisations with records or specialist knowledge of aircraft crash sites or losses at sea to come forward and tell them what information they have and why they think that aircraft crash sites at sea are important. The deadline for this stage of the project is Friday November 30th, 2007.

Visit the Aircraft Crash Sites at Sea project website to find out more.
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One of our current projects concerns aviation archaeology in England. Why England and not the UK? That is because England (and Wales) has its own laws.

There is some good information on the subject here. Here are there stories for the last two years:

  • 2005
  • September - New Spitfire and Typhoon digs added.
  • September - B-17 &undefined;Tondalayo&undefined; recovery updated.
  • October - Roundup of Summer digs and the P-47 from a lake in Austria added.
  • October - Details of a missing Mosquito crew recovered from The Wash added.
  • October - PDF of English Heritage booklet Military Aircraft Crash Sites added.
  • November - Ju88 engine recovered in France.
  • November - Halifax with missing crew members recovered in Holland.
  • 2006
  • February - A Typhoon in France.
  • May - Polish Spitfire pilot finds his aircraft in France.
  • May - Ju88 excavation in Surrey.
  • May - Memorial to a Fairey Battle crew.
  • June - A Remarkable Spitfire recovery for UK Channel 4 television.
  • June - Zeppelin L48 excavation carried out for BBC television.

    The official body for this subject is the British Aviation Archaeological Council. It has a lot of useful information, including details of local groups.

    Our particular interest lies in a German aircraft that was shot down in Lincolnshire during the Second World War.

    The Engone Room

    The Engine Room at the Fenland & West Norfolk Aviation Museum

    This aviation museum has a group for recovery digs and restoration:

    Permission for a dig to take place is often given after several months or years of negotiation with the Royal Air Force (MoD) and landowners and of course hundreds of hours of research into the exact location of the crash site. When the crash site is located by use of metal detectors, historical facts and records and local knowledge, the dig may take place over several days, depending on weather conditions, ground conditions, logistics and manpower.

    Once this has come to fruition and a license is granted to dig the team will set to work with great gusto after receiving a briefing and instructions from the dig supervisor. Present at this briefing will be the dig safety officer, a FAWNAPS armourer, equipment specialists and the research officer along with eager and willing FAWNAPS members.

    Yes, no dig may take place without a licence from the Ministry of Defence. This is quite a recent development and we applaud it. There are still surviving family members of those who died in the war and sensitivity to what may be a war grave should be insisted upon.

    In our case, though, the deceased pilot and crew were given a Christian burial locally.

    We plan to begin surveying in the Autumn of this year (2006).

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