Airwar over Denmark

Airwar over Denmark

 By Søren C. Flensted


1939-1940 Updated 9/4-24
1941 Updated 28/4-22
1942 Updated 17/8-23
1943 Updated 15/4-24
1944 Updated 15/4-24
1945 Updated 4/12-22

1940 New 30/11-23
1941 New 23/7-21
1942 Updated 19/3-24
1943 Updated 28/1-23
1944 Updated 23/7-23
1945 Updated 16/7-23

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Hampden I AE246 ditched in the sea of Kattegat near Anholt 29/3-1942.

The aircraft belonged to RAF 420 Sqn. Bomber Command and was coded PT-V.
T/O Waddington. OP: Lübeck.

Hampden AE246 was hit by flak over Esbjerg and lost fuel. Sqn. Ldr George Roger Tench headed north and approx. 12 miles south east of the island of Anholt he ran out of fuel and had to ditch AE246 in the calm sea.


 (RM 45 III 315 via Carsten Petersen)


 (RM 45 III 315 via Carsten Petersen)


The crew, whom apart from Sqn. Ldr Tench were F/Sgt Harry Thorne, Sgt Kenneth Thompson Hyde RCAF and Sgt Felix Augustine Durnan, entered the aircrafts dinghy. Ten o’clock in the morning they were observed by the Danish fishing boat L 31 “Maagen” of Lemvig.
Skipper Marinus Petersen picked the flyers and the dinghy up and brought them to Grenaa, where they arrived at 16:30 in the afternoon.
Apparently the flyers had asked Petersen to take them to Sweden, but neither he nor his crew understood English and therefore he took them to Grenaa. The flyers were taken to the local police station where they were given dry clothes and a warm meal.


 (Robert Tench)

Sqn. Ldr George Roger Tench  (center)


 (Robert Tench)

Sqn. Ldr George Roger Tench (left)


 (Hilary Kenrick, daughter)

W/op - Rear gunner F/Sgt Harry Thorne. Picture from 1940.


 (Hilary Kenrick, daughter)

F/Sgt Harry Thorne with fellow prisoners at Pow camp Stalag VIII B.


 (Hilary Kenrick, daughter)

F/Sgt Harry Thorne in 1946 after having returned to England.



At 17:15 the head of police informed Abwehrstelle, Aarhus about the flyers and at 20:00 they were collected by the Wehrmacht and taken to Aarhus. Later they were sent to Dulag Luft in Oberursel for interrogation.

When that was finished Tench was transferred to Stalag Luft III Sagan then to Stalag XXIB and after a while back to Stalag Luft III Sagan.

Thorne, Hyde and Durnan were sent to Stalag VIIIB Lamsdorf. Thorne was later moved to Stalag Luft III Sagan.


L 31 "Maagen"


Sources: BCL, OLCB, LBUK, UA, E.Nielsen Grenaa, AS 42-47.


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