Date: 1940 Aug 19/20 A/C Type: Whitley V SN: P4968 Code: MH- A/C Nickname:
 File: 393  Airforce: RAF Sqn/Unit: 51 Sqn Mission/Raid: Powerstation Zschornewitz SW Berlin
1 Pilot P/O Peter G. Brodie 9    
2 CP P/O Theo F. Johnson 10    
3 Rear gunner Sgt. Ronad Entwistle 11    
4 WOP/Ag Sgt. George P. White 12    
5 Obs. Sgt. Walter A. Kelham 13    
6     14    
7     15    
8     16                    

This aircraft made a successful belly landing in Lake IJsselmeer (Old Zuyder Sea) at night. Somehow the crew survived with help of
their life-boat or civilians. Later this lake-corner was pumped dry. Wreck was spotted 1941, near planned new village Marknesse.

This photo of the wreck is made probably in winter January 1942 (see link). . 

The surrounding dike around this polder was closed mid August 1940 and start was made to pump the water out. Water level at the time of the emergency landing was only 2.5 meter, therefore the top of the aircraft must have been above the water and visible when it set on the bottom and later embedded itself when the underside sank into the soft muddy seabed. After the landing night 20 August 1940, the crew could crawl on top of the bomber and get their life boat out. Only a mile from the shore line, they could draw attention and were rescued, arrested and became POW.

In 1941 the water level had decreased slowly. Access to this wreck was not easy because of waterpools, mud and reeds. At the time of the picture was taken in Januari 1942, the ground was frozen and covered in snow and the wreck could be reached. In the back of the image a dredging barge is working on the construction of a canal. On the moment of the photo, the 2-engined aircraft had its armament still on board (a Vickers K gun with round magazine was spotted). During 1942, the Germans must have cleared the site and used the bomber for scrap-metal. A few years ago, small parts were found that identified this aircraft as a Whitley bomber, however, serial number was never established. 

It is assumed that this was the P4968, P/O Peter Brodie's crew.  A distress-message from P4968 was received that gave location "North East of Polder, Zuyder Sea Holland", which is here. 

© ZZairwar (Zuyder Zee Air War).