Another Twist In Aircraft Engine Story

aircraft engine
The aircraft engine brought ashore by islands’ fisherman Barry Bennett might not part of a German plane shot down during the war, after all.

Following the find earlier this year there had been suggestions that the wreckage was part of a plane brought down by WWII military personnel based on St Agnes.

But St Mary’s diver and historian Todd Stevens says his investigation suggests it is British.

He’s inspected the wreckage with local Colin Downie and it appears that one of the blades has traces of yellow paint, a British hallmark.

After sending photographs to experts, the engine has been identified as a UK-made model that was fitted to Bulldogs, Flamingos and Empires along with others British aircraft.

Todd says he’s now going through wreck lists to see whether he can identify the downed flight.



4 Responses to Another Twist In Aircraft Engine Story

  1. Simon Pollock May 22, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    I’m a regular visitor to St Mary’s, and arrived yesterday for a week’s holiday. I’ve just been looking at the engine and noticed one thing which may support the “Hampden” theory. The propellor blades, whilst corroded, are largely undamaged or bent. This suggests to me that the engine was not under power when the aircraft hit the water, and therefore might have been the 415 sqn Hampden that had lost an engine. A quick internet search mentions the engine “falling off” Hampden AT135 on 18.8.43 whilst on anti-submarine patrol from RAF Thorney Island, and the aircraft subsequently crashing 8 miles west of the IOS (all crew survived).
    It’s of additional interest to me because my father flew in Hampdens (106 Sqn) during the early part of the war.

  2. Todd Stevens May 15, 2013 at 8:50 pm

    It was Colin Downie that knew it wasnt German, I just sent off the pictures to enthusiasts to take it further. They confirmed that Colin was indeed correct.

  3. Anon May 15, 2013 at 10:04 am

    Superb find, Hope the rest of her can be found. And lets keep her as part of our engineering heritige

  4. Chris Peat May 15, 2013 at 9:53 am

    The engine has been identified by the RAF and Brooklands Museums as a Bristol Pegasus. This was fitted to 57 different types of aircraft, including three types known to have been lost near Scilly. These are: The Sunderland, the Vickers Wellington 1c, and the Handley Page Hampden. The Sunderland and Wellington had 12’6″ diameter propellers, but the Hampden had 12′ diameter props. The recovered engine has as near as I can measure, a 12′ diameter prop, making it a Hampden. A recorded Hampden loss occurred in the same general area as the spot the engine was recovered from, on 18th August 1943. That accident happened to an RCAF Hampden of 415 squadron, registration number AT135 GS-X after losing an engine whilst on anti submarine patrol. The crew of four were rescued by locally based RAF Aiir Sea Rescue launch 2552, spending about ten days in Scilly before returning to duties. I am pretty sure this is our aircraft, but I hope someone will be able to take a closer look using a remote camera one day.