Father: James Dale
Ed. Consett Secondary School
prev. a police constable: RAF
Address in 1944: 10 St Marys Crescent, Blackhill, Co. Durham
"He is not a particularly polished pilot but seems quite sensible and flies the Spitfire satisfactorily."
d. 17 Aug 1944 (age 23) as a passenger in Oxford PH235, piloted by First Officer Thomas Frank Thompson (M.841).
Ferrying from Airspeed's factory in Portsmouth to 44 MU Edzell, Angus, Scotland; for an unknown reason (possibly hitting HT Cables), the aircraft dived into the ground at about 17:30 near Holmes Chapel, Cheshire.
The other passenger, Third Officer Archibald Campbell Couser (M.967) was also killed.
"HOLMES CHAPEL 'PLANE CRASH
Three pilots of the Air Training Auxiliary (A T.A.) were killed when their 'plane crashed in a field off Knutsford-road. Holmes Chapel, last Thursday. They were Thomas Frank Thompson (23). chief pilot, of 31 Patmos-road. London ; John Douglas Dale (23). of 14. St. Mary's Crescent, Blackhill. Durham, and Archibald Campbell Couser (24), of 73, High Pleasance Falkirk. Their 'plane was seen flying low over the the village before diving suddenly to earth. The bodies were recovered from a wood thirty yards away.
At the inquest conducted by Mr R. A. Daniel on Monday Dr. A. D. Picton said he saw the machine flying level over the village at about 500 feet. Within a second or so it went into a fairly steep dive and crashed behind some trees. His impression was that the engines cut out and that the machine then dived. Before that be thought the engines were working normally.
Norman Forshaw, electrical engineer, Macclesfleld Road. Holmes Chapel. and Walter Caulfield, 30. Middlewich-road, Holmes Chapel. also gave evidence.
A Captain of the A.T.A. said it was a bad crash—too bad to ascertain any technical cause. The Coroner recorded a verdict of " Accidental death" in each case.
First Officer Moore. A.T.A., thanked the local police for their assistance. " - Winsford Chronicle - Saturday 26 August 1944
Buried Old Blackhill Cemetery, Consett
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