13 Oct 2013

Memorial planned for NZ airman

12:08 pm on 13 October 2013

Memorials are planned to mark the death of New Zealand wireless operator and four other WWII airmen who died when their plane crashed in Wales almost 70 years ago.

RNZAF Flight Sergeant Thomas Malcolm Clothier of Matamata was 24 when his Avro Anson plane broke up in mid-air while on a training flight and crashed in Conwy in 1944.

Historian Gwyn Hughes has traced family members of three of the crew and they will be invited to the opening of a memorial park near to the crash site at Marl Woods.

The airmen, including three from Britain and two from Poland, had left Mona Airfield, Anglesey, en route to Lancashire when the Avro Anson MK1 plane were seen in difficulty over Llandudno.

Mr Hughes told the BBC school children were among the witnesses that February afternoon in 1944 and they described loud noises and debris falling from the sky before the plane crashed.

A separate plaque near the site and a memorial service are also being arranged.