Crashinfo_JB535_EN

Crash information JB 535 Kolhorn

During World War II more than 40 different bombers and jet fighters have crashed within de county borders of Hollands Kroon. The crashes were mostly on land, in the Ijssel lake and the Wadden sea.

Few crew members were arrested after using their parachute to reach the ground, others could flee with the help of the Resistance. However, the majority lost their lives and did not return home safely to their family and loved ones.

Information about the unveiling of the remembrance post for this crash

This remembrance post was unveiled on September 5th 2020

Location of this remembrance post

Plane crash Avro Lancaster Mk III JB535 OF-Q of 97 Squadron at Kolhorn

Crash information

On Sunday 30 January 1944, this Lancaster took off from Bourn airport (England) at exactly 17.15h to Berlin as main target.

Fo the crew present this was the 6th mission in this composition. That night a total of 534 aircrafts took off, of which 21 Lancaster belonging to the 97 Squadron.

Two Lancasters, the JB535, never returned to base.


The jet fighter exploded at exactly 22.12 above Kolhorn, after it was shot to fire during a fierce firefight with a German night hunter. The pilot of this plane was Oberfeldwebel Heinz Vinke.

The moment of impact many locals from Kolhorn were in the streets because they had just visited a play of the local theatre association.

Miraculously nobody on the ground got hurt. The crew members on the other hand all lost their lives. Together with fragments of the plane they crashed in and around Kolhorn.

The crew

Ernest Sumner Clarke

Flight Lieutenant

Pilot

22 years old

UK

Richard Venville Thomas Bowerman

Sergeant

Flight engineer

18 years old

UK

Eric James Lovelace Carpenter

Flying Officer

Navigator

21 years old

UK

Norman Charles Law

Flying Officer

Bomb aimer

26 years old

AUS

George Ridley

Flying Sergeant

Radio operator

Age unknown

UK

Thomas Eric Charles

Flying Officer

Gunner

25 years old

AUS

Rodger Peryman Wishart

Flight Lieutenant

Gunner

23 years old

AUS

Photos of the unveiling

Reports and press

Remembrance post unveiled in Kolhorn


In 2020, 75 years after the liberation, the foundation had planned to unveil 8 remembrance posts. Due to the Coronavirus things turned out differently. But 5 September was the turning point; the first unveiling of 2020!


Chris Dijkshoorn organized the program of this day. In his introduction speech Chris told that parts of the crashed Lancaster fell on the house he currently lives with his family. From the seven crew members, three were from Australia.

The Australian ambassador, accompanied by his wife, visited Kolhorn especially for this occasion. In his speech he stressed out that the freedom nowadays we consider as normal was made possible by the heroic work of these young soldiers of which so many lost their lives in the battle.


At the age of 15, Wilhelmina Struik, eye witnessed the crash of the Lancaster. She shared her memories and stories with Chris and together with the Australian ambassador, she unveiled the remembrance post. A beautiful ceremony where Dirk Bak played the national anthems of Australia, England and the Netherlands.


After the unveiling the group made their way to the cemetery where the crashed crew members of the Lancaster are buried. After the speech of Rian van Dam, mayor of Hollands Kroon, she laid a wreath at remembrance post in honour of these young soldiers. ‘The Last Post’ was played by Dirk Bak during this ceremony. The presence of 10 veterans completed the ceremonial actions at the remembrance post and the cemetery.


Especially for this day Museum OpZeeLand and museum the Turfschuur opened their doors for visitors, gave interesting information to the visitors who were enjoying a cup coffee, tea and Australian wine


The local press was present to report on this special occasion. NH news published a short summary. Click here for an extract.