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German Heinkel Aircrash

German Heinkel Aircrash on Blackstairs Mountain

The top photo here is taken just below the top of Sturra or Blackstairs Mountain. We’re having a break in the remains of the bomb craters left after a German Heinkel HE 111 Luftwaffe bomber crashed here on the 11th October 1941 during ‘The Emergency’. It had taken off earlier from France to attack shipping on the Irish Sea and was heard crashing about midnight on the above date. There seems to be two varying accounts – first that the RAF went in pursuit and shot it down over Ireland and second that it just got lost and accidentally flew into the east slope of the above mountain. However weather reports suggest conditions were clear with just a light haze, so take your pick.

Either way, the four German airmen  who died were Kurt Tiggemann, Wilhelm Böhmer, Ehrfried Kolwe, and Hans Szuflita. The men were first buried nearby in Rathnure and then later moved in the 1960s to the German War Cemetery in Glencree, pictured here. The Irish army attended the crash site and I’ve heard that they exploded the bombs on the hillside, leaving these craters. Part of the undercarriage and wheel are on display in Enniscorthy museum.

The site is accurately marked on our Blackstairs, Mount Leinster & the Barrow Valley 1:25,000 scale map.