Fitting tribute to young flyers

Farmer , David Lumgair, points out where the plane crash took place.
Farmer , David Lumgair, points out where the plane crash took place.

A tragic wartime accident was remembered last weekend at the dedication of a new memorial to two young flyers.

In conditions understood to have been similar to those 75 years ago, the sacrifice of Sub-Lieutenants (A) Arnold Waterhouse and Brian R. Honeyman, was marked with a new stone memorial and witnessed by family and well-wishers from the Arbroath branch of the Royal British Legion Scotland.

Dedication of new memorial to two fleet air arm flyers from Condor who died in 1943, was attended by one of the Airmens family. From left; Jeanette, Keith, Julie and Andrew Waterhouse.

Dedication of new memorial to two fleet air arm flyers from Condor who died in 1943, was attended by one of the Airmens family. From left; Jeanette, Keith, Julie and Andrew Waterhouse.

On February 27, 1943, Waterhouse and Honeyman took off from Royal Naval Air Station Condor in a Fairey Swordfish torpedo bomber for an instruments training run. However, mechanical problems caused the Swordfish to crash in a field at Gask Farm, near Letham, killing both men.

A wooden memorial was erected by Waterhouse’s parents to commemorate the pair, but over time this disintegrated. Nephews Andrew and Keith Waterhouse, who never met their uncle, decided to rectify this and have installed a permanent stone memorial, which was dedicated on Saturday.

Andrew said: “The day went better than I could have hoped for. The weather was glorious with clear blue skies if a little colder than what we left behind in Stratford upon Avon. It was probably very similar conditions to those on February 27th 1943 from what eyewitnesses reported.

“The presence of the RBL Scotland Division made the event both colourful and formal and was a great show of respect to my late uncle and his colleague. The service, conducted by Reverend Landon, was pertinent and most touching in its content.”

Andrew Waterhouse, nephew of one of the airmen, lays a wreath at the new cross.

Andrew Waterhouse, nephew of one of the airmen, lays a wreath at the new cross.

The new cross dedicated to the Condor flyers.

The new cross dedicated to the Condor flyers.