Kiveton & Wales Heritage

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MF633 Wellington Bomber Crash

In the fields opposite the houses on Red Hill, on 29th June 1951, a Wellington Bomber crashed killing all three crew on board. The plane was flying out of RAF Swinderby on a training flight and their inquest suggested that the pilot may have been confused by the lights from Kiveton Pit headgear.  In 2023 the History Society organised for a plaque to be installed near to the crash site on Red Hill in memory of the men who died: Pilot Officer Thomas Andrew Blair Bond (pilot), 23; Flt.Lt Ryland Leonard Luffman, D.F.M. (navigator), 25; Sgt. Bernard Leslie Curson, (air signaller), 22.

Pilot Officer T A Blair Bond was born 15th July 1927 in Londonderry. He is buried at Dundonald Cemetry, Belfast. His father's name is Blair Bond, mother's name Violet Irene Bond (nee Kenyon). He had two siblings, Brian Oliver Blair Bond, born 2nd April 1929, died December 1929 in South Africa. his other brother was named Richard Ashmur Blair Bond (Dick) born 24th Feb 1932, married Griseldis Wendoline Crowhurst 26th June 1975, died circa 2000. he gained his pilots wings flying a Tiger Moth on 16th March 1949. his last address was 573 Lisburn Road, Belfast.

Flight Lieutenant Ryland Leonard Luffman DFM was born 15th January 1926 in Pontypridd, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Glamorgan, Wales. Married in Bournmouth, Hampshire to Margaret Joan Roffey. this is the citation for his award of the D.F,M.

1323138 Sergeant Leonard Ryland LUFFMAN, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, no 101 Squadron.                  One night in December 1943 this airman was the wireless operator of an aircraft on a sortie over enemy territory. Before the target was reached the aircraft was hit by shrapnel and the mid upper gunner was wounded. Sgt Luffman immediately went to his comrade,s assistance, helping him to a rest position and then renering first aid. Afterwards he manned the wounded gunner's turret. Soon after leaving the target the aircraft was attacked by 4 fighters. Sgt Luffman soon proved his skill by shooting down one of the enemy aircraft whilst his excellent evading directions enabled his pilot to out-manoeuvre the ramainder of the attackers. During another sortie some nights flater, his aircraft was attacked by a Junkers 88. Once again Sgt Luffman co-operated well with his pilot who successfully evaded the enemy aircraft. This airman has displayed great skill and his courage and resource have been of the highest order.

Sergeant Bernard Leslie Curson aged 22 was born in London. He was unmarried. Father Robert Charles Curson married Edith Marion Siggers. He had 3 siblings, Eric Charles Curson, Esther F Curson and Brian Malcolm Curson.

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