The Netherlands / Landmark

Emergency landing of a Hawker Typhoon




On 11 November 1944, pilots of the Royal Canadian Air Force, based at Welschap airfield near Eindhoven, were ordered to bomb the lock at Terherne in two groups. The lock complex was situated on an important shipping route along which the Germans transported goods and military equipment. 

A little after nine o'clock in the morning, the two groups of Hawker Typhoon fighter-bombers left shortly after each other from Eindhoven for their mission. After arriving at Terherne, the first group successfully bombed one of the two lock sections. The second group fared less well. The bombs ejected by the pilot of the first plane exploded just as John Gordon Fraser's second plane had taken up a lower position above the lock to drop its own bombs.  

His plane was hit in the cooling system by shrapnel from the bombs that exploded below him. This caused the engine temperature to rise rapidly. The pilot of the third plane reported over the on-board radio that smoke was coming from the engine, which made it clear to John Gordon Fraser that he would not reach his base and would have to find suitable terrain for an emergency landing.   

Soon after, he made a successful emergency landing here on the Scharweg. Pilot Fraser initially took shelter in the Easterskar after the crash landing. Siebe de Jong and Jan Sloothaak provided him with civilian clothes and food. With help from the resistance, he then ended up in Tjalleberd after some wanderings through Joure, Akmarijp and Oudehaske, among other places.  

There, he assisted Lykele Faber, agent of the Office of Special Assignments (BBO), who had been dropped together with Peter Tazelaar near Haskerhorne in November 1944. Their mission, code-named Necking, was to maintain radio contact with London, organise the Frisian resistance, and help set up sites where provisions, weapons and ammunition could be dropped by parachute.