Second World War - Lynsted Memorial Project
Edric Albert HUTTON (of Lynsted)
b. 29th August 1912
Warrant Officer (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner), Service Number 1281666
Edric (known as Eddie) was born on 29 August 1912 , son of Edric Albert Sr, a plumber by trade, and Bessie (née Collins). Eddie was christened on 18 September 1912 in the parish church of St Alphage, Southwark, London.
At the time of 1939 Register census, Edric was living at "Elgar" in Oak Road, Hollingbourne, along with his wife of 2 years, Brenda Emily (née Breeden) and their son, Gordon. Edric was working as a plumber and serving in the Headcorn Fire Brigade.
Eddie served at the rank of Warrant Officer, the highest non-commissioned rank and above those ranked as Flight Sergeants. As a Wireless Officer/Air Gunner, his role was to transmit messages to and from the aircraft to their base. In addition he would serve as the reserve gunner and address any minor emergencies in any part of the aircraft. Should the aircraft get into difficulties, it would be his job to transmit positional signals. Should the aircraft ditch into the sea, Eddie would have been expected to remain at his post sending out distress signals.
On the 8 June 1944, Eddie was part of the six man crew of Wellington bomber MF616 7R-A. They had been detailed to carry out an anti E-Boat patrol over the English Channel at dawn. On returning from the mission, the pilot was instructed to divert to R.A.F. Chivenor, Barnstaple, Devon, due to ground mist. Against orders, the pilot attempted to land the Wellington back at its home station of R.A.F. Davidstow Moor, Camelford, Cornwall, where the squadron had been re-formed in R.A.F. Coastal Command on 7 April 1944. The aircraft struck a bank in a field approximately 500 yards from the touch down point and crashed, killing the entire crew. A crash tender was sent to the scene and began to fight the fire. A reserve tender had then arrived and began to run out the hoses. An explosion occurred in the aircraft 14 minutes after the fire started, and the crash tender was still at the scene fighting the fire. As a result of the explosion, eight persons on the ground were injured.
Those who died alongside Eddie were:
- Flying Officer Thomas David (Pilot)
- Flight Sergeant Arthur Frederick Gardner (Pilot)
- Warrant Officer Graham Davies (Radio Operator)
- Flight Sergeant Alan Rutherford Gale (Observer) (Royal Australian Air Force)
- Flying Officer John Edward Davies (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner)
A Court of Enquiry into the accident came to the conclusion that the pilot, 29 year old Flying Officer Thomas David, by disobeying the orders of Flight Control was to blame for the crash. It also decided that “Cpl Lambert was over zealous in fighting the fire longer than four minutes, and Sgt Phillips on arrival should have ordered everyone to safety. Both did not comply with Station Fire Orders, and because of their disobedience, are held responsible for injuries to those on the ground.”
At the time of Edric's death, his wife and son were living with relatives at The Foxhunters Inn, Erriotwood, Lynsted.
Now a private residence.
Edric is buried in Lynsted Churchyard extension. Grave Ref: Row J. Grave A.
|He is remembered on the Lynsted War Memorial (sadly with his name misspelled as “Edney”) and in the Book of Remembrance in the Church of St Peter and St Paul, Lynsted. Eddie is remembered each year at the Remembrance Sunday service.|
In addition he is also on the Headcorn War Memorial and in the RAF Book of Remembrance that is displayed in St Clement Danes (the central church of the RAF), in the Strand, London.
In 1950, Brenda remarried to Sidney Reynolds. She died in 1988, aged 76.