D.H. Vampire WA432/D

Fennie Law, Gifford,  E. Lothian













Aircraft Type Photo


BELOW: de Havilland FB.5 single seat Vampire—the variant featured on this page.


(A  T.11 dual seat (trainer) Vampire can be seen in the background.)


de havilland FB Mk.5 Vampire


Photo: Arnaud Gaillard (arnaud () amarys.com)


This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic license.






Aircraft Type and Background


RAF de-Havilland DH 100 Vampire FB Mk.5 / WA432/D



Aircraft Type Designation (FB.5): Close-support ground attack fighter-bomber.



The FB.5 variant of the de Havilland Vampire first flew in June 1948. It was used to equip Royal Auxiliary Air Force (RAuxAF) squadrons, in addition to regular RAF squadrons.


The twin-boom FB.5 was equipped to carry rocket projectiles, as well as more conventional munitions.


A Sea Vampire (with folding wings) was developed for aircraft carriers.


The de Havilland DH 112 Venom was developed from the DH 100 Vampire.






Aircraft Accident Details


RAF de Havilland Vampire WA432/D was on a weather reconnaissance sortie over the North Sea. However, while returning to RAF Turnhouse through cloud and mist,  the aircraft struck Fennie Law in the Lammermuir Hills near Gifford, East Lothian.






Aircraft Pilot Casualty


The pilot who died in this incident was:

  • F/O Sam Milne (22), Pilot, RAuxAF.





Crash Site Photos


BELOW: Faseny Cottage on the way to Fennie Law.


There is a much shorter route to Fennie Law but I walked in from Faseny Cottage because I was visiting other wreck sites as well. [Gary]


Faseny Cottage on the way to Fennie Law.


Photo: © 2015 Gary Nelson



BELOW: A piece from the de Havilland Vampire's airframe.


A piece from the de Havilland Vampire's airframe.


Photo: © 2015 Gary Nelson



BELOW: A long piece of spar; probably, from one of the Vampire's wings.


A section of spar; probably, from one of the Vampire's wings.


Photo: © 2015 Gary Nelson



More photos from Gary Nelson's collection on


Page 1-B and Page 1-C




Earlier photos below





BELOW: Actuator mechanism.


actuator mechanism


Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel



BELOW: Closer view of actuator.


closer view of actuator


Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel



BELOW: Another view of the above assembly from the Vampire jet.


another view of the actuator


Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel












BELOW: unidentified aluminium sections.


unidentified section from the vampire jet


Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel



BELOW: Another view of these sections.


more unidentified wreckage


Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel



BELOW: Finned part.


fan-bladed part


Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel



BELOW: closer view of fins or fan blades.


side view of fan blades



Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel






(Approach Route Photos)


(Additional Wreckage Photos on Page 1-C)







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Crash Date / Site



Pages last updated: 5 Dec 2015


(Route and more wreckage photos added.)



Accident Date: 17 Apr 1955


Accident Site:

Rushie Cleugh, Fennie Law, [map] Lammermuir Hills.


Nearest road (from Gifford): SE on unclassified roads via Longyester to East Hopes Farm. (Farm track to Fennie Law).


Region: East Lothian


Nearest towns or villages:

Longyester or Gifford



Nearest large towns:

Haddington (N)


OS Grid Ref:


GPS Refs: N/A


Present Condition: Small wreckage parts may remain.



Air crash sites in this vicinity:


1) RAF de Havilland Vampire WA432/D, crash at Fennie Law, Lammermuir Hills.
(The aircraft on this page.)


2) Luftwaffe Heinkel He111 1H+JH, crash at Longnewton Farm, Lammermuir Hills.


3) RCAF Boulton Paul Defiant N1731, crash at Bleak Law.




Aircraft Details



Registration or Serial: WA432/D


Operator: RAuxAF

(Royal Auxiliary Air Force)

(603 (City of Edinburgh) Squadron.)

(During WWII, this and other RAuxAF squadrons were converted temporarily to regular RAF status.)


Operating Station: RAF Turnhouse.


Station Location: Turnhouse, Edinburgh, Lothians.


Current Station Status:

Military operations ceased.

Now, operational civil airport.


Current Airport Name: Edinburgh Airport.





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