1952-01-10

Crash site Cwm Edno near Dolwyddelan, Wales 
Airline Aer Lingus 
Aircraft Douglas C-47B  –  EI-AFL  –  St. Kevin 
Route London/Northolt  –  Dublin/Collinstown 
Crew 3  –  0 survivors 
Passengers 20  –  0 survivors 

 

The crash

The plane took off from London/Northolt Airport at 17:25 on a flight to Dublin. At 19:12 the crew reported they had reached the Nefyn area and they would descend from 6500 ft to 4500 ft. This was the last radio contact with the plane. The descending plane was caught by severe downdraughts on the lee side of Snowdon mountain which forced the plane down into an area of very great turbulence. The crew lost control of the plane, a part of the starboard wing broke off and at 19:15 the plane crashed into a peat bog some 18 miles off course. The plane caught fire and was completely destroyed.
The exact cause of the crash was not determined.

 

The mail

The plane carried 6 bags of mail (2 from Copenhagen, 1 from Malmö, 1 from Gothenburg, 1 from Geneva and 1 from Frankfurt/Main). Among the mail was 13 registered letters.
According to a note in “The Revealer” all mail was salvaged except the bag from Geneva, but one postcard from Switzerland is actually known. Most of the mail was badly torn, partially burned and damaged by water. So far no mail from Germany has been recorded.
The mail was brought to Dublin for further processing. The Post District Dublin (Post-Cheanntar,  Baile Átha Cliath) produced labels which were attached to the covers and cards.
The first part of salvaged mail was forwarded on Monday the 14 January with the label type A. The same procedure was followed on 15 January. No mail was forwarded on 16 January.
It is assumed that Aer Lingus protested against the Post Office using labels mentioning the airline’s name and the name of the airplane. The text on the label was changed – see type B, and the last mail forwarded on 17 January show this label.

So far I have recorded  3 covers from Denmark and 10 covers from Sweden. Ronny Vogt also has a postcard from Switzerland (see his book).

 

 

 

A.19520110-a
Irish label.
Size textblock:  49 x 66 mm.

Only used on mail forwarded  14 and 15 JAN 1952.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

B.19520110-b
Irish label.
Size textblock:  ?

Only used on mail forwarded  17 JAN 1952.

 

 

 

 

The size of the labels type A and B vary as they were printed on large size paper and later cut from the sheets. The labels were always tied to the covers or postcards with the resealing label type C shown below.

 

 

 

C.19520110-c
Irish resealing label.
Type M.P. 480.
Size:  81 x 29 mm.

 

 

Recorded with postmark DUBLIN 6 with dates 14 JA, 15 JA or 17 JA 52.
This postmark was most certainly used for special purposes only in the General Post Office in Dublin. The origin of the postmark went back to the 1910s or early 1920es when English postmarks were used.
The labels were postmarked before they were attached to the items.
I have seen one cover were the label was postmarked  BAILE ÁTHA CLIATH  2  14 JA 52 after the label was attached to the cover.

 

 

 

 

 

Examples of mail

19520110-011a 19520110-011b
Cover from Copenhagen, Denmark to Dublin. Crash label type A tied with resealing labels type C postmarked DUBLIN 6  14 JA 52.
Vogt Collection.
19520110-012a 19520110-012b
Registered cover from Denmark metermarked KJØBENHAVN  -9.1.52 to Dublin, Ireland. Crash label type B tied with resealing label type C postmarked DUBLIN 6  17 JA 52.
Vogt Collection.   
19520110-003a 19520110-003b

Cover from Sweden metermarked SIMRISHAMN  -9.1.52 to Ireland. Crash label type A tied with resealing labels type C postmarked DUBLIN 6  14 JA 52.
Thiesen Collection.

19520110-029a 19520110-029b

Cover from Sweden postmarled STOCKHOLM BAN  8.1.52 to Dublin, Ireland. Crash label type A tied with resealing labels type C postmarked DUBLIN 6  14 JA 52.
Vogt Collection.

19520110-025a 19520110-025b

Registered cover from Sweden postmarked STOCKHOLM  8.1.52 to Ireland. Crash label type A tied with resealing label type C with the unusual Dublin postmark BAILE ÁTHA CLIATH 2   14 JA 52.

19520110-037a 19520110-037b

Cover from Sweden metermarked SÄFFLE 09.1.52 to Ireland. Crash label type A tied with resealing label type C postmarked DUBLIN 6  15 JA 52.
Vogt Collection.

19520110-038a 19520110-038b

Large cover from Sweden postmarked STOCKHOLM  BAN  8.1.52 to Dublin. Crash label type A tied with resealing label type C postmarked DUBLIN 6  15 JA 52.
Vogt Collection.