28 Dec 1962, Hawker crashed into Lion Rock ridge

Last page
Submitted by Admin on Sat, 08/16/2014 - 13:35

hawker crash 1962

 I have been researching the story of the Hawker crash on Dec 28th 1962 in which Flt Lt David Crichton died , and was very surpirised to learn he had crash landed successfully just a few weeks earlier (see http://gwulo.com/node/20834).  David Crichton was my wifes uncle and last week Davids sister , my wifes Aunt Anne retold the tragic event . She is well and living today in australia . We live in the uk. David is buried in the colonial cemetry which Anne has visited .

I'm not sure she knows about this crash landing earlier that month . she will be very shocked when we tell her . All these years later it shows the power of the internet . 

Anyway if anyone has any other recollections or information please post ! 

Hunter Crash

Hello Rob


I too remember that day clearly. I was at school at St Georges in Kowloon Tong (just below Lion Rock) and saw the rescue helicopters flying around, and think I may have seen the smoke, but I'm not sure. I also vividly remember the previous articles in the papers concerning the passenger flight and the wheels up landing.


At the time I was 14 and had just developed an interest in Aviation, which continued into professional flying from which I recently retired.


Anyway, a day or so after the accident I climbed Lion Rock with a friend and visited the accident site. There was a small hole in the ground (about Hunter size) which was about 10 foot deep. The surrounding grass was burnt as the papers reported. I did take some pictures but, alas, they were lost when my mother died recently.


However, I did pick up a small part of the aircraft ( I know I shouldnt have) and it is an electrical connector. I got it looked at by an engineer at work once. You can still see some earth inside it. It has sat on my mantlepiece ever since.


I cannot think of a better home for this and would be delighted if you would have it.


Please let me know and I will send it on. I am in Essex by the way.



Lion Rock Hunter Crash

I have just picked up on this thread several months late, but thought that I would make a minor contribution.  I was only four years old in 1962, but I have a vivid memory of the crash because my father was the station commander at RAF Kai Tak when it happened and he too flew the Hunters on 28 Sqn.  We lived on the top floor of a block of flats on Waterloo Road and I was playing on the verandah when the Hunter flew by.  I watched it fly straight into Lion Rock and a large black mushroom cloud of smoke rising into the air after the crash.  I obviously didn't know who the pilot was, but I do remember my father musing about the cause of the accident.  I'm afraid that is the extent of my memory.

Lion Rock Hunter Crash

I have searched a few times over the years and only now traced this site.  I lived in the army flats at Kowloon Tsai, just under Lion Rock.  I in my room and heard an enormous bang.  I could not see the top of the rock for the balcony above, but after getting out onto the balcony could clearly see the smoke rising.  I too climbed up to the crash site the following day with a friend.  The point of impact was on the rear side of the hill, just below the summit.  My understanding is that two aircraft were about to line up with the runway for a landing and that the leader had just cleared the summit but his No.2 had been just too low to do so

Lion Rock Hunter Crash

I did not actually see the aircraft on that day, as did TimOman. However, my understanding of HOW it crashed is the same as his. I was aged 10 at that time and living very close to Osborn Barracks. I was very interested in planes, especially military ones. I would go out in the open to watch whenever a Hawker Hunter flew by. A flight routine as I could see was to go over the Lion Rock from the Shatin side towards the direction of Lei Yue Mun (over the harbour). Then they would bank to the right and fly over Hong Kong Island in a westerly direction. Next over Stone Cutters Island and headed towards Kai Tak, somewhat in an clockwise loop. From where I lived I heard them only when they were over the Lion Rock range i.e. within my line of sight. I think they probably were just a few hundred feet above the range (usually over the saddle where the crash occurred) when they started this run towards the direction of Lei Yue Mun. The bit from that point on up until the bank to the right was in a straight line and appeared to be the fastest bit of the circuit. I was having lunch on that day and I heard the sound of one of those "runs". With rice bowl in hand I did not go out to watch. The sound of that run was however followed by the sound of a huge explosion. When I rushed out to watch a pillar of black smoke was there over the saddle (a short distance west of the Lion Rock peak). From a photo that I saw on a newspaper the next day the plane seemed to have ploughed straight into a slope just about a hundred feet below the ridge line. It was also reported that only part of the remains of the pilot was recovered. It is a very sad story. I understand that the Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department these days compiles reports on crashes that occur in Hong Kong. I doubt whether it did back then, especially when it was a military aircraft. I grew up in the age of the Venom (Vampire?) and the Hawker Hunter and even now have very fond memory of them. The last time I was in London I took time to visit the RAF Museum and to my delight, a Hawker Hunter was still there! Hope this 'recollection' of mine does its bit in making the story complete.

Visiting Hong Kong in August 2012


I am visiting Hong Kong on business in early August and my father, Bruce Crichton Robertson, a cousin of David Crichton, has asked me to visit the Colonial cemetery to pay my respects.   I was wondering if anyone can assist me in locating David's grave?

Kind regards

David Crichton's grave


The list of graves has this entry:

17---/09/09- Crichton D G 1962-12-28 26 4335

The first entry gives the plot, so the grave is in section 17. The location of each section within the cemetery can be found on this map.

Regards, David


Lion Rock Hunter Crash

If anyone is still interested in this subject, another "I was there" report is here




Date(s) of events described
Last page