A question mark still remains following an official air crash report over the cause of an air crash in Huddersfield.
Official investigations have now been concluded into the crash on take-off from Crosland Moor Airfield which wrecked a four seater aircraft.
The 82-year-old pilot of the 1978 built Piper Cherokee Arrow, Malcolm George Hill, and his passengers escaped serious injury.
Mr Hill, of Canberra House, Beech Lane, Grasscroft, Oldham, walked away from the crash unhurt but two passengers suffered slight injuries.
A newly-published Air Accident Investigation Branch report into the incident says that the aircraft was “damaged beyond economic repair” in the crash on the morning of June 19 this year.
It says that during take-off, the aircraft developed a swing to the left which the pilot was unable to correct with the use of rudder.
The aircraft then left the runway, ran down an embankment and crashed through a stone wall before coming to rest.
The report says that after the aircraft developed a swing to the left, the left wing tip contacted some bushes bordering the runway which increased the yaw.
The report continued: “The aircraft left the runway, ran down an embankment and through a stone wall before coming to rest in a field with all three landing gears collapsed.
“The occupants evacuated the aircraft normally with some minor bruising to the rear seat passengers who had only been provided with lap belts.”
Although no firm cause for the crash can be identified the report says that photographs show marks on the runway where the aircraft began its take-off roll. It says the pilot, who has 1,880 hours flying experience, believes these could indicate that the nose landing gear retracted and “compromised his ability to steer the aircraft.”
But the report says it is not possible to refute or confirm the pilot’s theory and that in those circumstances the cause of the loss of directional control has not been established.
Mr Hill and his wife Margaret were accompanied by friends, Jeff and Margaret Hine.
They were flying to an event at Sussex.
Mr Hill, twice president of The Rotary Club of Saddleworth, was flying his party to Goodwood to attend the annual general meeting of the elite Flying Rotarians.
The retired Oldham businessman has been a pilot for 42 years and regularly visits venues nationwide to attend Flying Rotarian meetings.
The father of four did National Service as an engine mechanic in the Royal Air Force.
The four-seater Piper Arrow aircraft was making ready for take off and was travelling at about 30mph when the incident happened.