Local Heart, Global Soul

July 25, 2017

The Wings Of War Fell To Earth…

Filed under: Flevoland,HISTORY,PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS,WORLD WAR II — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Travelling home along the province of Flevoland from our weekend-for-two away late last summer, Himself and I discover some sort of marker on the side of the road.

A long pole topped with a cut-out of a red aeroplane and a small information board. Needless to say we were curious and stopped to investigate further.

Entitled: “Vliegtuigroute” (Flightpath), the information board reads: “(Pole No. 03)
During the night of 9-10th April 1943  on this spot a Messersmith ME 110 (G9=Cx werknummer 4811) coming from it’s Leeuwarden airport base, crashed.

“De gehele bemanning” (The whole crew),(Kiwi’s note: it’s strange that it is worded like this because there were only two occupants in the plane)

Pilot Lt.  Kostler died. The radio operator survived.

He jumped out of the plane and it was the fourth time in one month that this had happened to him. In a fight with a Lancaster of the 101st squadron the two planes collided. 

What was exceptional about this event was that the RAF  did not  have a flight path over the IJsselmeer so the route for this plane was very unusual. Both aircraft exploded. The Lancaster crashed a few meters further, near Pole No.4.
Info:  http://www.airgunners.nl

Sadly, even with a good look around, Himself and I never found Pole No.4.  so we are unable to bring you the information that would have been on it about the fate of the Lancaster bomber occupants.

We both liked the idea that even in some tiny way spots like this are being marked and remembered so that these moments in history and the lives given on both sides of World War II are remembered.

We have no clue what happened to the unnamed radio operator after this crash, if he survived the war or not. I wish that things like this were better publicised so that history buffs in the general public could follow a trail of these poles as a day out for instance. It could even be made as a walking or cycling trail or  treasure hunt exercise for kids.

After writing this blog post earlier, I decided to do a little bit of extra research. Going to the airgunners website I found that not only did they have a link to the series of poles marking these sites but even better they had a language option link get this page in English. Also just a note of information: “4meiherdenkingdronten.nl” refers to the 4th of May which is is the National Remembrance Day  here in the Netherlands, and Dronten is a town in Flevoland.  Instead of transferring th entirety of the details  from there to here I will just add the link:

4 mei herdenking dronten  /memorial-poles-along-crash-route / language=English

Reading up further on the link for Pole No.4 that gives the information that was put into the poles, I am sad to report that none of the seven man crew of the Lancaster survived the crash.  I also learned that Pole No.4 is located at Alikruikweg 35, Biddinghuizen, whereas Pole No.3. is at Alikruikweg 20, Biddinghuizen. That must surely mean it is at least one farm away, probably why we never found it.

If anyone is interested in any of the additional information on any (or all) of the poles in this series and would like a translation from the Dutch text into English, please just drop me a message in the comments. I would be more than happy to translate it for you. The surrounding countryside is today a place of tranquility and peace, and I hope, of rest.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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