Peace, a year after horror

Peace, a year after horror

Wester Daily Press Reporter  April 11th 1974

A MONUMENT to 108 people who died when an airliner plunged into a wooded hillside in Hochwald, Switzerland, exactly one, year ago, was unveiled yesterday. A total of 140 relatives and friends, and 20 of the 37 survivors looked on. They travelled in two bus-loads from England, to lay wreaths at the memorial a block, flanked limestone by large two bronze wings. 

Most of those who died when their chartered Vanguard crashed in a snowstorm on April 10, were ‘ wives from  Axbridge, Congresbury and Yatton. They were travelling from Bristol to Basle for a trade fair. 

The party is led by Mr. Barney Lovell, chairman of the special relief coordinating committee which was set up in Axbridge. 


They were greeted by Herr Hansruedi Vogtli, from the hamlet of Herrenmatt, only a few hundred yards from the crash site. He and his ten-year-old son were the first to discover the aircraft. Most of the British party stayed with friends and in hotels in around. Basle. Only one person is staying in Hockwald itself. He is David Besley, aged 18, a hospital porter from Axbridge who since the crash has received a bravery award for rescuing three victims from the wreckage. 

David fought his way down the mountain through a blizzard to get help. Earlier a spokesman for the Swiss air accident investigation department, said the probe into what was the country’s worst air disaster, would not be completed until  the autumn. He said it was too early to apportion blame, but apparently it involved an error by the pilot, who died in the crash. 

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