Battle Relic: World War Two
British Supermarine Spitfire left
(portside) wing aileron
Finding place: On the grounds
of the Manoir de la chapelle on 1
Rue des Alpes Mancelles, 61250
Condé-sur-Sarthe, Departement Orne,
Date: June 4th, 2015
GPS location: GPS:
travelling through France from the
Tank Museum at Saumur to
Normandy for the festivities in
light of the 70th anniversary of
D-Day, battle detectives billeted at
the Manoir de la chapelle Bed &
Breakfast in the village of Condé-sur-Sarthe
near Allencon. The building is a
15th century manor with a walled
While there, we were entertained by
the more than hospitable owner
Frédéric Maltete ("Propriétaire
-Gérant") in French). After
introducing ourselves and explaining
our focus of interest, Frédéric took
us to the yard behind the living
quarters and showed us a part of a
Spitfire fighter plane of World War Two.
Frédéric explained to us that the
aileron was found within the
perimeter of his property.
Markings on the plane part
A closer look at the object
revealed some through-and-through
damage suggesting hits from either
anti-aircraft artillery or canon
fire from another fighter plane.
We also noted the stenciled black
markings: DTD 314 S
Our research revealed that this is
the paint specification number
DTD = Air Ministry's Directorate of
DTD314 was the specification for a
synthetic finishing material
consisting of a pigmented primer
suitable for direct application to
metal or timber and a pigmented
synthetic finishing coating suitable
for application over the primer - by
brush or spray.
DTD314 was underscored with an "S"
to ensure that when refinishing the
wrong paint wasn't used.
Spitfire left (portside) wing
We also found that the plane
part is a left (portside) wing
aileron for the British World War
Two Supermarine Spitfire fighter
What cause this aileron to end up in
the yard of the mansion Condé-sur-Sarthe
is still unknown.
the website of the town we know
that World War Two did affect the
"In May 1940, waves of refugees
fleeing the Nazis come through
Condé-sur-Sarthe. The occupation
resulted in forfeiture of any
weapons, requisitioning of property,
ration cards and curfews.
In 1944 , two days after the
landings on the Normandy coast,
Condé-sur-Sarthe is invaded by the
Nazis fleeing Alencon. On 22 June,
four men of the resistance force of
Trun are shot at Galochère and
fifteen others from Courcerault on
June 30, 1944.
On 12 August, the Germans fled and
the French 2nd Armored Division of
Marshal Leclerc liberated Condé-sur-Sarthe
without much difficulties."
There is however no mentioning of
any downed aircraft within the
community. The question remains also
whether or not a Spitfire can
continue its flight with one missing
aileron. If the incident where the
Spitfire lost this aileron occurred
after D-Day, the pilot may have
landed his aircraft at an aerodrome
in the liberated part of Normandy.
On June 4th, 2015 at Condé-sur-Sarthe
in France a World War Two British
Supermarine Spitfire left (portside)
wing aileron was shown to this
agency. This plane part allegedly
belonged to a downed aircraft.
We have determined the part as
original but could not connect it to
a registered crash or emergency
landing of an aircraft of the
mentioned type in this area. It
remains an interesting relic to the
battle to liberate France in World
War Two though.
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