Hawker Hurricanes (x2)

Garmouth, Moray













Aircraft Type Photo


BELOW: Mk. I RAF Hawker Hurricane R4118. This restored aircraft is still flying in 2014.


Details of this Hurricane's appearances at air shows can be found at Hurricane Display.co.uk


mark 1 hawker hurricane r4118. Restored and still flying


Photo: 2006 Adrian Pingstone (Arpingstone). Released by the author to the public domain.






Aircraft Type and Background


RAF Hawker Hurricanes P2724 and P2874



Aircraft Type Nickname: "Hurry"; "Flying Tin Openers"; "Flying Can Openers" (later versions).



A military single-seat interceptor / fighter / bomber flown by the Royal Air Force. The Hurricane was designed by Sydney Camm and built mainly by Hawker Aircraft Ltd.


The Hawker Hurricane was equipped with 1 Rolls Royce liquid-cooled Merlin III 12-cylinder power plant. Later versions had Merlin XX, XXI or XXII power plants.


The Hurricane fighter-bomber was armed with eight .303 inch Browning machine guns mounted on the wings. The Mark IV version also carried 2 x 250lb or 500lb bombs or fragmentation bombs. Some Hurricane Mark IVs were equipped with rocket projectiles,100m).






Aircraft Accident Details


The two Hawker Hurricanes featured here were attached to 17 Squadron, then operating out of RAF Elgin / Bogs O'Mayne just outside Elgin in Moray.


17 (and other) Squadrons had been briefed to operate anti-Luftwaffe bomber patrols over north-east Scotland, and especially over RAF air stations such as Lossiemouth. Severe damage had been caused already to aircraft at RAF Lossiemouth by surprise attacks by Luftwaffe He111 Heinkel bombers.


During a practice attack, one pilot (Sgt May) was killed in Hurricane P2724 when it collided with P2874 over the small town of Garmouth. One aircraft crashed near Connagedale Farm on the south side of Garmouth and the other aircraft crashed at an unknown location in or near Garmouth.





Roadside Memorial



BELOW: The roadside memorial cross on the B9015


roadside memorial cross and poppies.


Photo: © 2014 Roy Young



A local man who witnessed the crash placed a little white cross near the crash site. Over, the years, this cross has been replaced many times in memory of the airman who died. The cross can be seen on the right-hand verge of the B9015, about 200 metres south of Connagedale Farm 1. The Farm is situated on the south side of Garmouth. The OS Grid Reference is NJ 330 640.




BELOW: A closer view of the white memorial cross with remembrance poppies.


roadside memorial cross and poppies.


Photo: © 2014 Roy Young




The inscription on the plaque below the cross reads:

    In memory of Sgt Leonard May
    Died in a Hurricane crash at this spot on 8 July 1941
    "Life to be sure is nothing much to lose
    But young men think it is and we were young."




More details at this website.





Footnote 1: The site at Connagedale Farm may now be under the management of Future Homes (Scotland) Ltd.






Aircraft Pilot Casualty / Survivor


The pilot who died was:

  • Sgt Leonard George May (20), 1251146, RAFVR.
    (Buried, Bletchley (St Mary) Churchyard, Buckinghamshire.)


(Please click on the hyperlinked name above for further details at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission's website.)



The pilot of the other Hurricane bailed out safely from his aircraft. Unfortunately, however, his name is not known.






Crash Site Photos


Memorial cross photo shown above. Other crash site location unknown.





















Crash Date / Site



Accident Date: 8 July 1941


Accident Sites:

Crash site 1: Near Connagedale Farm, Garmouth.
Crash site 2: Unknown location, Garmouth.

(Mid-air collision involving Hawker Hurricanes P2724 and P2874.)


Region: Moray


Nearest town or village:



Nearest large towns:

Elgin (SW) [map], Lossiemouth (NW) [map ] or Buckie (E) [map]


OS Grid Ref. N/A


GPS Ref. N/A


Present Condition: Wreckage recovered.




Aircraft Details



Registrations or Serials: P2724 and P2874


Operator:  RAF(17 Squadron)


Operating Station: RAF Elgin / Bogs O'Mayne [map]

(Satellite of RAF Lossiemouth)


Station Location: Elgin, Moray


Current Station Status: Military operations ceased in 1947. Site restored to farmland.




Related Links



RAF and Related Links

17 Squadron (History).

RAF Elgin / Bogs of Mayne at Aircrew Remembered.


Roadside Memorial Links

The Northern Scot. (Letter outlining accident and advising of memorial cross)

IWM War Memorials Archive. (Description of memorial cross type and location.)



Hawker Hurricane Links

Aviation History Online Museum

Hurricane at The Battle of Britain

Hurricane photos at Military Airshows.co.uk

Hurricane origins and design at VectorSite.net

Hurricane at Warbird Alley

Hurricane at Wikipedia

Hurricane history at Bluebird-Electric.net

Hawker Hurricanes in the UK at MilitaryAirshows.co.uk (includes Merlin engine sounds)




Hill Walking Links


(Hillwalking and Mountaineering)

WalkingScotland (The official Walking site of Scotland's national tourism organisation)

Walking Scotland's Mountains




Emergency Services Link

Register for Text 999 Emergency Service

If you cannot make voice calls, you can now contact the 999 emergency services by SMS text from your mobile phone.