Airspeed Oxford HM724

Braeriach-Sròn na Lairige, Cairngorms












Aircraft Type Photo


BELOW: An Airspeed Oxford Advanced Trainer


airspeed oxford trainer.


Photo published in Aircraft of the Fighting Powers Vol I Ed: H J Cooper, O G Thetford and D A. Russell Harborough Publishing Co, Leicester, England 1940. Copyright lapsed.






Aircraft Type and Background


RAF Airspeed AS.10 Oxford Mk I / HM724



Aircraft Type Nickname: "The Ox-Box"



The Airspeed Oxford was developed from the Airspeed AS.6 Envoy commercial aircraft as an RAF trainer. The Oxford was equipped with two 355hp - 375hp seven cylinder air-cooled Armstrong-Siddeley Cheetah IX or X radial engines.


Essentially, this was a 3-seater aircraft, but provision was made for up to 6 crew. The Oxford was equipped with dual controls for pilot training purposes, but these could be removed for bombardier training.


Several other crew training roles were also covered by the Airspeed Oxford, preparing aircrew for entry into RAF Bomber Command.


At least 8 variants of the Airspeed Oxford were produced. In addition to those manufactured by Airspeed Ltd., some of these aircraft were built by sub-contractors such as de-Havilland, Percival, and Standard Motors. The Mark I Oxford was equipped with an Armstrong-Whitworth dorsal turret, but all subsequent variants lacked this feature.


In addition to their role as advanced trainers, Oxfords were used as communications, anti-aircraft, and anti-submarine aircraft; and also as air ambulances.






Aircraft Accident Details


On 12th October 1943, Airspeed Oxford HM724 took off from RAF Leanach (Relief Landing Ground for RAF Dalcross) near Inverness in north-east Scotland. On board were a Pilot Instructor, a Pilot under training (u/t), and two non-operational airmen.


During the flight over the Cairngorm Mountains, however, the aircraft stalled and crashed at Braeriach‒Sròn na Lairige.






Aircraft Crew Survivors


All four airmen survived this accident. They were:

    F/O E. W. Hutchins, Pilot Instructor, RAF.

    F/O J. Turner, Pilot (under training).

    F/O G. C. Vaudrey, RAAF.

    F/O R. McGregor, RNZAF.






Crash Site Photos



NOTE: The Oxford wreckage is scattered down the stream and the boulder fields to the left of the stream.



BELOW: Fragments of wreckage from Airspeed Oxford HM724 on Braeriach.


fragments of wreckage from oxford hm724.


Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel



BELOW (next three photos): The two Cheetah engines from Airspeed Oxford HM724.


(next three photos): The two Cheetah engines from Airspeed Oxford HM724.


Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel





Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel





Photo: © 2013 Neil Daniel



BELOW: Looking from the crash site into Lairig Ghru. A track leading up to Braeriach can be seen just to the left of centre of the photo.


looking from crash site into Lairig Ghru.


Photo: © 2013 Gary Nelson



BELOW: Part of the undercarriage attachment / retraction unit from the Oxford aircraft.


undercarriage / retraction unit assembly.


Photo: © 2013 Gary Nelson



BELOW: Looking down the glen from the wreckage site of the two Cheetah engines (foreground, lying in the burn). The engines are in a different location from the other wreckage.


looking down glen from engine wreckage site.


Photo: © 2013 Gary Nelson










PAGE 1-B (Engines)


PAGE 1-C (Undercarriage, etc.)


PAGE 1-D (Small Parts and Fragments)


PAGE 1-E (Wreckage Location Legend)


PAGE 1-F (Route Photos)


PAGE 1-G (Braeriach Summit Views)







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Crash Date / Site



Accident Date: 12 Oct 1943


Accident Site:

Braeriach (1296m)
(Braeriach-Sròn na Lairige)


Region: Aberdeenshire


Nearest town, village or activity centre:

Glenmore Forest Park Activity Centre, Glenmore Lodge Activity Centre or Coylumbridge / Rothiemurchus


Nearest larger town:

Aviemore (NW)


OS Grid Ref. N/A


GPS Ref: N/A


Present Condition: Both engines, undercarriage assemblies and much fragmented wreckage still remained onsite at 2013.


However, some of the fragmented wreckage is quite widely scattered. The two engines lie together in a burn on the slopes of Braeriach separate from the other wreckage, while other smaller parts lie quite a way down into Coire Beanaidh.




Aircraft Details



Registration or Serial: HM724


Operator: RAF (No.19 (Pilot) Advanced Flying Unit ((19 (P) AFU))


Operating Station: RAF Leanach (Relief landing ground (RLG) for RAF Dalcross


Station Location: Leanach by Culloden, Inverness, Scotland


Current Airport Status: Decommissioned and dismantled in 1945. Flight hut is only remaining building.




Related Links



RAF and Related Links

19 (P) AFU

RAF Dalcross

RAF Dalcross at Morayvia

Airspeed Oxford at RAF Hendon Museum




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