"When they got there and found the airman they found he was more scared of them.She said he must have thought he was going to be killed and ran off into the woods."But it was only about six months ago that I heard of this story of these women capturing the parachute.
In order to get a closer look at recent trends, we can compare these numbers to data from the 2006 Census. "She told me the villagers had seen this German bomber come down a couple of miles away and a handful of them, mainly women as the men were away at war or working on the farms, got together and decided to retrieve a parachute."They picked up whatever weapons they could lay their hands on like pitchforks and brooms for their own protection and walked two miles across the fields.The four-man crew were supposed to follow the Birmingham to Bristol railway line to direct them but chose the wrong tracks.
Instead the plane ended up going toward Redditch and was shot at by anti-aircraft fire when it past RAF Wythall. The pilot, Oberlieutenant Johannes Speck von Steinberg, flight engineer Feldwebel Siegfried Ruhle, an Iron Cross winner, and observer Feldwebel Fritz Mohn were killed.The episode has now come to light after Christine Thorp, whose mother Irene Smith was one of the women involved, took an offcut of the parachute to the BBC's Antiques Roadshow.