CRASH OF A BRISTOL BEAUFORT
ON PALMER ISLAND
4 MILES FROM PAYNESVILLE
ON 30 JULY 1945
RAAF Mark VII Bristol Beaufort A9-143 crashed on Palmer Island about 4 miles from Paynesville, in Victoria at 0815 hours on 30 July 1945. It was on a dual instruction flight in low flying from East Sale airfield. The crew were all killed. They were as follows:-
F/O Robert Meath Hammond (415870), 1 OTU Instructor Pilot - right seat
F/O Melville Maxwell Castle (424966), 1 OTU Pupil Pilot - left seat
F/Sgt. Stanley Trevor Lloyd (431375), 1 OTU Wireless Operator
The cause of the accident was obscure but the Director of Flying Safety believed that it was "possible that an error of judgment was made by the pilot during a turn to port at low altitude in difficult conditions."
This aircraft was originally delivered to the RAAF from the Department of Air Production on 24 October 1942.
Picture:- Rick Hanning
The Crew of Beaufort A9-143
NOTE:- On 2 August 2017 a small number of Gippsland Lakes Classic Boat Club members located the crash site of the Bristol Beaufort bomber A9-143 to mark the 72nd anniversary of the crash that claimed the lives of 3 crewmembers of A9-143.
I'd like to thank Grant Ottaway and Rick Hanning for their assistance with this web page.
I'd also like to thank Mark Melville Ruddy, whose great uncle Melville Maxwell Castle was killed in this crash.
Can anyone help me with more information on this crash?
"Australia @ War" Research Products
© Peter Dunn 2015
This page first produced 10 March 2000
This page last updated 03 August 2017