Remembering the crash of RAF Shackleton XF702 near Lochailort
recorded and updated by Ken Bowker

On December 21st 1967, XF702, a Royal Air Force Avro Shackleton MR3 maritime reconnaisance aircraft of 206 Squadron, based at RAF Kinloss, encountered severe icing conditions in cloud and subsequently crashed into the hillside below Creag Bhan, above Arieniskil, Lochailort.

All thirteen men on board were killed.

The impact scar is still visible on the hillside, a short way off the Right of Way from Arieniskil to Meoble, at a height of about 700 feet.   On May 19th 2007, at the culmination of a project started by Ken Bowker, and in the presence of four children and one grand-daughter of the crew, Derek Straw of the 206 Squadron Association fixed a commemorative tablet at the scene bearing the 206 Squadron motto - "Nihil Nos Effugit" - "Nothing escapes us".

On the fiftieth anniversary of the tragedy, 21st December 2017, John Channon (a past member of 206 Sqdn) organised a memorial service at the site of the crash, where the cairn was completely rebuilt by Jimmy MacDonald of Skye in summer 2017. Details of that day's pilgrimage can be seen here.

Please respect the site.

Shackleton XF702 - Bruce Mackie

The crash scar, 2005

Commemorative tablet installed on May 19th 2007

RAF Lossiemouth Chaplain Rev.Tucker conducts the
memorial service on December 21st, 2017

The RAF Mountain Rescue Team's report  on the accident is available here.

The Daily Record's front page, next day - click for a .pdf file.

This is what The Times said.

George Watt was RAF Kinloss at the time of the accident has given us permission to publish his memories of the aftermath - click here to read them.

Harry Clyne has made some historical notes from various sources - read those here.

Jim Brown, an RAF technician based at Kinloss, adds his memories here.

Our thanks to everyone who has contributed to this page.