Along a little country road in County Antrim between the towns of Ballymena and Ballyclare, resides a small memorial and resting spot dedicated to the lives lost in two tragic airplane crashes.
The first of these incidents occurred in October 1941, when a crew of Royal Air Force Volunteer Reservists from No.5 Air Reserves School & No.25 Training Command were on a navigational training exercise. During the flight, an engine overheated and caught fire causing the plane to crash among the slopes of Big Collin Mountain near Tildarg. All four crew members lost their lives.
The second incident occurred in February 1945, when a crew from No.1674 Heavy Conversion Unit & No.17 Group Coastal Command were on a night-time radar homing exercise in a Consolidated Liberator Bomber. During the flight, the autopilot failed and the plane was flung out of their circuit causing it to wreck. Seven crew members died and three managed to survive.
From the site, visitors can see great spans of the County Antrim Countryside, including Slemish Mountain, Ballyboley Forest, and Big Collin Mountain. The site is mostly just an area where people can stop the car or have a short respite.
Know Before You Go
To get here, you have to drive to Ballyclare Town in County Antrim and then leave the town by the Rashee Road and follow this road for approximately five miles until you reach the layby, in which the crash site is located.
If you are coming from the Ballymena direction, you follow the Larne Road until you reach the Misty Burn Café/Farm Shop junction, and then turn right onto the Colin Road and follow this for two miles until you reach the layby.