Although the analysis is spot on - and is probably why no-one has put this online
(I have found references - but would you believe that they don't give numbers, merely inform the pilot that the take off and landing runway requirements are similar to other named aircraft.)
But the mention of something like "a simple table of runway length vs weight or maybe just a couple of examples" is the sort of guide I have in mind.
Nowadays, every operational take-off and landing is accompanied by precise calculations (if for no other reason that some mission criteria mean that the loading is so high that going too fast too soon could collapse the undercarriage), and carrier ops are such that one almost wonder how they launch an aircraft in less than an hour. Ok, exaggerating, but the workload is heavy.
To be perhaps a little more exact, max and min figures are what I have in mind, but I didn't want to overcomplicate the question for non-flyers and frighten them off by listing criteria.
A light civil aircraft and an Hercules transport are vastly different, but might operate off the same strip (I'm generalising) but a wartime tail-dragger like a Spitfire or Hurricane (or Blenheim or 110) could need much more strip as it wallows and floats before it settles and can be pulled up.
I really only needed to know that say a dead stick aircraft needs a minimum of say 500, 1000, or 1,500 feet to get down, and that the spec says the pilot must not event attempt a landing if such a distance is not available, as he will over run - and meet the trees at the end of the strip in a most unfriendly way.
There was a news article about this recently, when the wrong weight entered into an in-flight computer nearly resulted in a disaster in a civilian airliner. But fortunately the captain realised the problem and took manual control. A good illustration of the point you have just made. Disaster Narrowly Avoided
Looks like there's another author out to see what he can spin out of the Hess legacy and see if he can retire on the book sales:
Amusingly, I think, he has Hess's destination as RAF Prestwick, and that Dungavel was 'impossible' so couldn't have been where he was going.
Reading a review of the book almost seems to suggest that Prestwick is referred to as an airport, which it was of course, but it was soon taken over by the RAF when war broke out, so was a military airfield when Hess made is flight.
In 1941, I find it difficult to accept that even Hess would have contemplated trying to fly a Luftwaffe marked Bf-110 into an RAF airfield. Lookouts would have spotted the light bomber approaching, and a combination of AA fire and interceptors would surely have ended the flight.
Unless, of course, all those involved - radar, sector control, lookouts, AA batteries, interceptor flights, station personnel etc etc were all in on the arrival.
If so, he would have been met, and flown in by escorts - if only to prevent other aircraft, observers, or batteries downing the German bomber because they were not in on the plan, but spotted it.
Then again, we already know he was heading for RAF Acklington, so why would he fly across Scotland, needed all that extra fuel on an already extended flight, and having to fly above all those AA batteries, observers, and potential intercepts.
Enjoy this new work of fiction from 2010 (well, let's say it's no more fact than all the other works of speculation that have been spun around the fixed points of fact that are known):
I don't know that I'd agree with something as broad as not discounting 'Anything by any author'.
Irving makes a particularly good example of this as his writings are amongst the most pernicious one may find with ease, and obtain freely (without cost).
Some years ago, I happened to dip into his writings (before I learned who he was), and found I was 'sucked into' his hateful views as I became interested in the way he combined established facts from World War II with carefully crafted revisions of how they combined, and what they meant.
The unusual version of history caught my attention, which is fair enough as we can see in the interesting and at times amusing variation created around he Hess story. But these usually reach the 'alarm bell; stage after a while, as the smell of bull builds up to the stage where one's nose can no longer be ignored. But this is different from someone like Irving, who denies reality, and has an alternate political agenda.
I've also found that there are now increasing numbers of apolitical and educational sites covering the war and events such as the flight.
Granted they may be described as sanitised, but this also means that - provided you already have a wider and more mature background - their content makes a handy reference, and which can be just for neutrality.
There can also be some odd discoveries.
It took me quite a while - a few years ago - to fathom the url of what appeared to be a comprehensive account of World War II...
At the time, I couldn't understand why the creator had not done more to credit the work, but it was accurate, and easy to read, although I could never quote it.
This was, in part, due to my habit of avoiding Wikipedia. Not because their is anything wrong with it (quite the opposite), but because it is an encyclopaedia, a source of reference material, and not the original source. I merely prefer to dig and find the info for myself - even if it turns out to be the same.
For this reason, it was a very long time before I happened to have some content 'memorised' to the extend that I noticed I was reading the same, word for word, when I did turn to Wikipedia for a cross check, and to see if it listed any documented references.
Of course, I now know that what I was looking at was a trick used by SEO (search engine optimisers) to fool search engines into ranking the source domain higher higher in their searches by having good factual content.
In actuality, the site was an American real estate vendor, and had copied thousands of Wikipedia pages into its own domain, in the hope that having all those 'good' pages would make search engines look to it for a result when people searched for real estate for sale in the US.
Happily, this no longer works and is a waste of time and effort, as the search engines rank not only on accuracy now, but also relevance, so there are few Wikipedia pages that will help a real estate agent up the ranks.
Ye know what folks, I'm just a wee bit afraid to comment on this topic. Now, I wonder, why is that? I have read a lot of this fellow Irvine's books but not the one about Hess and I have found them all historically accurate as far as my knowledge of WWII is concerned. I have been involved in many discussions for example, with regard to the bombing of Dresden, and I have yet to be convinced his treatment of the topic was inaccurate. I recall no evidence that Irvine promoted neo-Nazism. Why do I have fear of involving myself in this topic?
Am I intimidated by the likes of "He is a well-known Revisionist - and Holocaust Denier, now widely considered an antisemite and a racist who promotes neo-Nazism." ? Yes, I think I am. I think to myself, by disagreeing with this blatant assertion, am I leaving myself open to the same labels which apparently, rightfully and beyond question, belong to David Irvine? Perhaps, but let me state here and now that I know the persecution of the Jewish people in Nazi Germany actually took place. Does that save me from the nasty labels?
If Irvine doesn't believe that the persecution of the Jewish people in Nazi Germany actually took place, then that's his right, he needs to be convinced, not out of hand condemned by an unsubstantiated mystical general acceptance. This of course does not deprive him of the ability to write an accurate history of General Rommel, or the bombing of Dresden... or does it? I read both of those historical books and I found them well written, easy to read, and exceptionally accurate on the basis of my own knowledge of these two WWII events.
Yes, what I have written here, I have written with a measure of fear. A fear that stems from a feeling of disagreeing with a yet-to-be-established majority. Over and above that, what I have written really doesn't have much to do with Scotland.
And Dugald steps in to prove just how dangerous a Revisionist like Irving is (weaving his ideas through the known facts, but interpreting them to suit his various prejudiced views).
Irving is not being "condemned by unsubstantiated mystical general acceptance".
Publishers will not accept his writing for publication he is so discredited.
Where does one start?
You mention Dresden - Irving claimed the dead in Dresden numbered 100,000-250,000. A number now set at 25,000-35,000. He eventually conceded, and revealed he had based his figure on propaganda issued by Goebbels.
In 1983, he said the (later to be proven a hoax) 'Hitler Diaries' were fake, then decided to endorse them as real, then changed to say they were fake. Take your pick.
He lost a libel case (1996) against Penguin and Lipstadt - he claimed he had been libeled under the grounds that Lipstadt had called him a Holocaust denier when in his opinion there was no Holocaust to deny, and suggested that he had falsified evidence or deliberately misinterpreted it. Penguin et al were awarded costs, landing him with a bill of £2 million, and was eventually made bankrupt in 2002 for not paying.
In 1989, he a pamphlet in England, stating that there was no mass murder via gas chambers at the Auschwitz. He said the gas chambers at Auschwitz were a hoax, and that he: "has placed himself at the head of a growing band of historians, worldwide, who are now sceptical of the claim that at Auschwitz and other camps were 'factories of death', in which millions of innocent people were systematically gassed to death". He went on to write: "now he is saying the same thing about the infamous 'gas chambers' of Auschwitz, Treblinka and Majdanek. They did not exist – ever – except perhaps as the brainchild of Britain's brilliant wartime Psychological Warfare Executive", and that: "the survivors of Auschwitz are themselves testimony to the absence of an extermination programme".
In a speech made in 1990, he stated: "I say the following thing: there were no gas chambers in Auschwitz. There have been only mock-ups built by the Poles in the years after the war".
In 1992, a German court found him guilty of Holocaust denial under the Auschwitzlüge section of the law against Volksverhetzung. He was then barred from entering Germany, and the governments of Austria, Italy, and Canada, did the same, with Canada arresting him in 1992 and deporting him back to England.
His integrity was demonstrated after his arrest by Austrian police in 2005. He was given 3 years for denial under law prohibiting National Socialist activities (Verbotsgesetz). His plea in this case included a statement that he no longer claimed the Holocaust did not take place and that: "The Nazis did murder millions of Jews". As soon as he was released and deported to England in 2006, he immediately reaffirmed his position off Austrian soil, and stated that he felt "no need any longer to show remorse" for his Holocaust views".
This material appeared on TV news as it happened, so is hardly 'mystical'.
I could go on and on. That's only a fraction of his life story in the land of denial.
The only thing you have to fear in here is that someone might not let you make an assertion like:
"condemned by unsubstantiated mystical general acceptance"
And go unchallenged with no public records and accounts being called up to refute it.
I think we all know where this research by Apollo is revolving around (Dungavel Estate - Emergency landing ground) - so I hope it goes well. It should be based on the exact mark of Messerschmitt Bf-110 because in all probability there were different flying surfaces, minor change to such as flaps could make a big difference to required distance. This assumes the intention of Hess was to land there , and also intended to take off again rather than just a early aircraft carrier style controlled crash landing with just a possibility of taking off again.
ISTR the Hamilton residence at Dungavel was a military hospital , also under this cover it was also a secret squirrel drey
Is there any known mapping of exactly the location of the emergency landing ground at Dungavel from RAF records , or was that a secret about Scotland ?
The authors have interviewed a woman who served with the ATS and was at Dungavel on the night of May 10, 1941. She claims the landing lights at the Dungavel airstrip were switched on, ready to receive an incoming aircraft, but later switched off.
I have looked at a number of maps, but being a military field, and grass, there is nothing.
As you say, Dungavel would really have been a 'carrier landing', to avoid being shot down
Unless the story about a peace deal was true - rather than Hess being deluded - he would not have have any need to take off again.
This, without any data, I am sure would not have been possible from Dungavel.
But, as a tail-dragger, this is all a bit academic, as these could operate from any suitably flat field.
The significance of an emergency landing ground was that it was a known safe location, and had facilities on hand if needed. Access would also have been planned for vehicles and personnel.
Just eyeballing a field has the distinct disadvantage that such things as fences and wires are invisible from altitude, and when seen on final approach - well, it's too late to do a missed approach and try again. Ditto for holes and rocks - once these become visible, it's mitigation, not avoidance.
When flying, you have to have one eye out for a landing spot if the engine fails, and as most modern news stories tell us, these landings often end in disaster, even in 'open' country - and that's usually just in a small private plane.
I'm not researching this, and was about to have this thread deleted (as per note at start) but I guess I will have to withdraw that now, as it has generated some interest
"And Dugald steps in to prove just how dangerous a Revisionist like Irving is (weaving his ideas through the known facts, but interpreting them to suit his various prejudiced views)." I have a problem with this opening sentence of your reply Apollo. In the bracketed clauses I don't know who is being mocked: who is the person represented by the possessive pronoun "his"; is it this fellow Dugald, or this fellow Irving, in the introductory clause? Am I weaving my ideas through known facts, or is it Irving who is weaving his ideas through known facts? I guess it must be me since I am supposedly the one who proves the apparent success of Irving nasty behavior. So I'll assume I'm weaving my ideas through known facts. But, jist a wee minute Mister, the only known fact I used in my Reply # 62 was, "I know the persecution of the Jewish people in Nazi Germany actually took place.". What idea, pray tell, am I weaving though this known fact? Nah, Apollo, I don't think I can be used to prove just how dangerous Irving is; geez, I didn't even know how to spell his name till I read this thread. Oh, and I am not prejudiced.
' "Irving is not being "condemned by unsubstantiated mystical general acceptance".' I find it very hard to believe publishers will not accept Irving's writing for publication because he is so discredited. No, I'll go further here... I just don't believe it. It's a sweeping statement, and I wonder who or what method was used to establish this as factual. Is it because of the information obtained from "http://www.fpp.co.uk/books/Hess/" where Irving apparently said: "...and I -- pondered the mystery of why no US publisher had offered for my Hess: The Missing Years."? The fact that one can download copies of this book at no cost hardly constitutes proof that no one will publish his writing in general.
With regard to Dresden's deaths being between 100,000-250,000, was Irving's estimate any less accurate than others? This estimate was quite acceptable to high ranking American officers. Why do you use his varying estimates disparagingly with the likes of " He eventually conceded". The others eventually conceded too! Good heavens man, most people amended their estimates. There is nothing wrong with that, it's quite normal. I believe about 100,000 died... but let me impress upon you here, that I'm including those who were killed in the American strafing which took place next day while the refugees were leaving the city (no, no, not based on that 'nut-case' Kurt Vonnegut's claim but rather, on eyewitness accounts... Yes, this is a bit catty).
Yes, Irving endorsed the fake Hitler diaries, and so did the distinguished British historian, Trevor Ropper. Irving was also one of the first to expose the diaries as a hoax. And yes, he did change his mind as a result of further investigation, just as any historian would do when some fact was shown to be a fake.
Yes, he lost his trial in the Lipstadt affair. This libel suit of course was just about the nuttiest thing Irving ever did. Imagine undertaking a libel suit against one such as Lipstadt, in America! Man, that's like undertaking a libel suit against the Celtic F.C. in a Parkhead court room! I hope he never paid his $2,000,000.
It seems Irving wrote a pamphlet 22 years ago claiming there had been no mass murder about 50 years ago at a places called Auschwitz, Treblinka, and Majdanek. Well, that's what he thinks, or at least believed at that time. It's nothing but an opinion of something he believed. If I disagree with him, so what, does this deprive him of his right to an opinion? Geez, this guy hasn't killed anyone or robbed any bank or done any harm to any person; all he has done is express an opinion, and it matters not one hoot if it's wrong and he refuses to recant or indeed even if he does recant. As regards his so-called "Psychological Warfare Executive" and "testimony" claims; again, nothing more than opinions.
Yes, Irving was deported back to England, I recall the event quite well. A German fellow called Zundell, with whom Irving was associated, was also deported back home. Canada has "hate" laws and I think they were used to get rid of Irving and Zundell. I don't know if the Jewish Defence League or some such thing had something to do with this, but I do recall they attacked Zundell physically outside the couurtroom when Zundell was being tried... I recall it because the attack had been viewed on TV.
Who established the laws under which Irving has been vilified and deported? Were "hate" laws established by national votes, or were they simply introduced by a government? I don't know, but I do not recall ever having had such a vote in Canada. The fact that these laws were established willy nilly, leads me to believe the so-called general acceptance is to me somewhat "mystical".
You see Apollo, you end your reply with the very thing which instills fear in me... a threat! So let me state here unequivocally, that I am not, nor ever have been, a believer in the same hard-to-define-racial-beliefs of the author David Irving.
The problem with the location in the link given above for the Dungavel airstrip location is that it is on the top of a small rounded hill surrounded by mature trees, which are these on pre WW2 maps, so it must have been somewhere else. However there is some good flat unobstructed land about 600m to the west. A good candidate for the location would have been parallel to the B745 road at that point, 1000m of perfectly flat unobstructed ground, except for the fact that this would be almost at right angles to the prevailing wind, which could have caused problems. However there seems to be enough flat land at right angles to the road for a shorter strip. What may or may not be significant is the remains of a Nissen hut, now in a very sorry state, nearby, but that could have been bought by the farmer and moved there after the war.
Thanks to Google this would be my first choice - to the frontage of the residence , however I would like to make a site visit to consider all aspects (the problem being the clutter because of the present usage of Dungavel Shooting Lodge).
Now - the other point of interest I have noted forom Googling is that Dungavel was in fact a Red Cross Hospital, if it were flying the red cross - then it would probably have Red Cross "soverign state" international accepted status. If Hess had landed there - then arguably he would not have been landing on Scottish or British territory
With no intent to be negatively critical of J Guy, who carried out most of the visits mentioned in RCAHMS reports, I spoke to them, and they told me he just did this out of interest, and did not have a great deal of time to spend on any one site, so reports are not detailed. This means the reports are basically of what could be seen by eye, and not usually of anything that needed to be looked for.
This came to light when I asked about things I found only feet away from reported objects, but which were not mentioned in RCAHMS.
In other words - don't treat the reports as definitive or detailed. There could be a lot more (doesn't mean there actually is though, unfortunately )
The Strathaven article has a month but no date - so we have to assume the 70 year reference it uses makes it a 2011 article.
It also refers to Hess landing.
Hess did not land, His aircraft crashed, and he arrived by parachute - separate from the aircraft.
The image described as the airfield is copyright John Harris, so we can probably also assume that has come from his 2010 book.
Any source on the law regarding the Red Cross 'sovereign state' reference?
Sounds like something that would be problematic if an airfield on the same property was a military facility - ie an RAF officially designated emergency airfield.
I suspect hat could nullify such status if it existed.
Under the signatories of the Geneva Conventions then the Red Cross would give neutral ground protective status.
Use of the Red Cross Flag / sign / insignia , needs approval of the Red Cross (I know of one case in the UK where the Red Cross took effective action). The ICRC have always been adament that they have the sole rights.
From Wiki , sorted post war , regarding Switzerland
ICRC is the only institution explicitly named under International Humanitarian Law (IHL) as a controlling authority. The legal mandate of the ICRC stems from the four Geneva Conventions of 1949, as well as its own Statutes. The ICRC also undertakes tasks that are not specifically mandated by law, such as visiting political prisoners outside of conflict and providing relief in natural disasters.
The ICRC is a private association registered in Switzerland that has enjoyed various degrees of special privileges and legal immunities within the territory of Switzerland for many years[when?] and those are described[by whom?] as amounting to de facto sovereignty. On 19 March 1993, a legal foundation for this special treatment was created by a formal agreement between the Swiss government and the ICRC. This agreement protects the full sanctity of all ICRC property in Switzerland including its headquarters and archive, grants members and staff legal immunity, exempts the ICRC from all taxes and fees, guarantees the protected and duty-free transfer of goods, services, and money, provides the ICRC with secure communication privileges at the same level as foreign embassies, and simplifies Committee travel in and out of Switzerland. On the other hand Switzerland does not recognize ICRC issued passports.
Contrary to popular belief, the ICRC is not a sovereign entity like the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and also it is not an international organization, neither of non-governmental nor of governmental type. The ICRC limits its membership to Swiss nationals only, and also unlike most NGOs it does not have a policy of open and unrestricted membership for individuals as its new members are selected by the Committee itself (a process called cooptation). However, since the early 1990s, the ICRC employs persons from all over the world to serve in its field mission and at Headquarters. In 2007, almost half of ICRC staff was non-Swiss. The ICRC has special privileges and legal immunities in many countries,[which?] based on national law in these countries, based on agreements between the ICRC and the respective governments, or, in some cases, based on international jurisprudence (such as the right of ICRC delegates not to bear witness in front of international tribunals).
I suppose , to display a Red Cross / Cresent on a hospital ship is effectively - de facto sovereignty inside or outside of territorial waters, the same argument is valid for a hospital on land with Red Cross / Cresent flying on the property - the deeds / registration would deliniate the actual property covered by the flying of the flag
We could wander off on a tangent, but I think this means there is no real sovereign status, legal, or diplomatic status or protection for somewhere - or something - flying a red cross.
The are agreements and recognitions between parties, which are tolerated on the basis of "We better not blow up the red cross area, because we might want its protection one day". It also creates an incentive not to fight (in time of war) under a false red cross flag. Although my memory fails me for the detail, I recently came across a British operation where the forces did fly the red cross as a subterfuge. This one stuck in my mind as no analysis of this move was made later.
Perhaps the Highway Code is analogous - of itself, one cannot be arrested, prosecuted, fined, or whatever for failing to observe the Highway code, but it collects references to legislation in one place, so failing to observe it can be detrimental if you do commit an offence, and have not observed the content of the Highway Code.
I doubt the deeds would come into it - the flag would be flown on a ship, so it's the hospital ship and not the waters it that are being declared.
By the same logic, I would suggest troops on land might spare a building flying a red cross (or whatever now that we have to be PC ), but anything around it would still be fair game.
For example, an RAF airfield could have a hospital inside its perimeter, flying the flag, but I doubt that would stop an enemy shelling the runway, dispersal area, hangars, or workshops, or machine gunning any personnel wandering around.
It also depends on the parties having signed the Convention.
During the war, Germany and Russia were not signatories from the beginning, and the troops freely committed atrocities.
Even after signing up (to gain protection) some factions still refused to accept or recognise it, and carried on regardless.
The relevance of noting this is that if they have not signed, they cannot be brought to account later for breaking the convention's rules - a contract (which is what it basically is) needs two willing parties, regardless of how horrendous their actions may have been - and an alternative case has to be brought against these groups. For example, war crimes, which are based in law, not mutual and consensual agreement.
This came from the photograph by John Harris which was included in the Strathaven article offered above, and was easily found using the satellite view.
So it may not have been the obvious place for this airfield, but with two independent pieces of info that turn out to place it in the same location, it's hard to discredit this field as the site of the airfield and therefore grass strip.
Claimed as one of the more objective books on the subject, in fact has a Introduction by The Duke of Hamilton.
I don't know if the paperback version page numbers are same as hard-back , but here goes.
Page 36 confirms the Messerschmitt Augsburg-Haunstretten factory landing strip was used by Hess & this was the Air Testing facility also.
Page 52 - machine turned to taxi to the end of the grass runway which at Augsburg-Haunstretten was 1,100m and 50m wide.
Page 53 - (Hess take-off, final - to Scotland) - the run itself was quite lengthy
Page 57 - mention of Dungavel House
Page 66 - he made a minor alteration to course and about 22.45 passed very close to Dungavel House. There was a very small and sloping grass airfield at Dungavel House, privately owned but unused since the beginning of the war. When in use , had been suitable for light bi-planes but it was certainly inadequate for a heavy aircraft such as a Messershmidt Bf110. It is not clear whether Hess intended to attempt a crash landing there or bale out over the sea. In any event he failed to recognize either Dungavel House or the little airfield in the late twilight and decided to climb & continue west ---
Well IMHO a runway of 1,100m length , this is not a long runway , particular for testing aircraft straight from the production line or for emergency landings.
- the run itself was quite lengthy (but obviously under 1,100 m)
- ref. to Dungavel landing strip - as being very small and sloping (we have firmly identified the landing strip - this is not a small area of grass) more like Russian Steppe !
- was Dungavel landing strip "certainly inadequate" for a heavy aircraft such as a messerschmitte Bf110 , as stated on Page 66
IMHO - the authers were shown a incorrect area of ground claimed to be the landing strip and accepted this as fact. Or - they never investigated and made a definative position of the air-strip in the first instance !!
- Also to claim that the range of Bf110 escort fighter/ fighter bomber/night fighter range to be a HEAVY aircraft is total folly.
The most basic search using Google shows the Bf110G-4 varient as 4975kg (max. loaded 9888kg)
A Hawker Hurricane 2b weighing in at 7244 pounds (standard loaded = 3285kg Needing 400 yards take-off to 50ft / landing run 225 yards
A Supermarine Spitfire Mk.V111 weighing in at 5190 lbs empty = 2354kg / Loaded 7990 lbs = 3624 kg
It seems to me that the lengthened Hess version Bf110 would be able to land no problem at Dungavel House , if his tanks had been re-filled - then he would have taken off from Dungavel House no problems , but having dropped his drop-tanks - how far he could have travelled is another matter