RAF student pilots killed in light aircraft crash named by police

Scene of the crash near Castle Howard. Image: Paul Atkinson.
Scene of the crash near Castle Howard. Image: Paul Atkinson.

Two RAF student pilots who died when their plane crashed into a remote field in Ryedale have been named by police.

Cameron James Forster, 21, from Sussex, and Ajvir Singh Sandhu, 25, from Essex, were killed as the light aircraft crash landed in a field off Mains Lane, between Castle Howard and the A64, in North Yorkshire, at about 10.40am on Saturday.

The plane was a Slingsby T67 Firefly, which is thought to have took off from Full Sutton Flying Centre near York. A spokesman for the centre declined to comment.

Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) investigators continue to probe the cause of the crash.

The Castle Howard family have sent their “heartfelt condolences” to the grieving relatives of the pilot and his passenger.

Nicholas Howard, the executive co-chairman of the Castle Howard Estate, said: “The sudden shock is always terrible for those close to fatal accidents, and my heartfelt condolences go out to the families and friends of those who died in this crash.”

Members of the public alerted the police to the crash at around 10.40am on Saturday.

Following the crash, North Yorkshire Police Chief Inspector Mark Grange said: “Two males who were in the aircraft were pronounced dead at the scene.”

Up to 20 firefighters attended the scene and set up a foam blanket around the aircraft in case it caught fire, a North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said.

A spokesperson for the nearby Crown and Cushion pub in Welburn added: “All we heard was sirens about half 10. A lot of people heard the fire engine go and stop but we didn’t see the plane.”