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Seventy years on a memorial to plane crash victims
6:33pm Monday 4th June 2012 in Banbury
RELATIVES came to Bodicote, near Banbury, from all over the country to mark the anniversary of a plane crash which killed six Royal Air Force personnel.
A Wellington Bomber crashed just a quarter of a mile from the village, killing all the people on board on December 28, 1942. On Saturday members of their families and representatives from RAF Benson attended a memorial service in the same field they crashed into and dedicated a memorial to them.
The Wellington bomber was on a routine 25-minute test flight, believed to have started in Warwickshire.
No cause of the accident was established, although there was speculation it may have been due to bad weather or the pilot’s fitness.
Rena Hubbell, 84, from Fulham, lost her brother John Beaumont in the crash. She said: “It was a very moving commemoration, particularly when a Spitfire flew overhead during the service. It is a beautiful memorial, with the names of all the people who died engraved on it.”
The crew were Flying Officer and pilot John Byrne, 22; Flight Sergeant Jack McDonald, 26; Flt Sgt William McMillan, 26; Leading Aircraftman Leslie Nicholson, 20; Aircraftman Beaumont, 19, and Aircraftman Granville Broadhurst, 19.