Project Josephine
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Project Josephine
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Blen 4 image pilots copy.jpg

An extract from one of Josephine’s
letters describes the event:
“… the heat was really unbearable,
and the crew used their emergency
tent to set it up under the aircraft wing…
as local people gradually started to
trickle out of the bush they were
seen to be very poor yet regularly
they left a scrawny chicken
at the tent flap…”
Josephine Roberts

Our mission

Historical context

Our expedition

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In the spring of 1941 a Bristol Blenheim and six Hurricanes took off in convoy from Takoradi Airport, Ghana, to embark on a 3600 mile journey across Africa to Egypt. The journey took seven days to complete, flying above an exhilarating but challenging African landscape and it became known among pilots as the Takoradi Run.

Project Josephine will follow the story of one Blenheim aircraft and its three-man crew, which went missing along this route in 1941. Tom, the young aircraft gunner, was the only crew member of this lost Blenheim to survive and eventually return home to Scotland.

In Edinburgh, Tom’s fiancée, Josephine, received the official government notification announcing his loss:  ‘Missing  – presumed dead ‘. Our documentary will tell the story of Tom’s remarkable rescue

In 2020 the Pro Jo team will set out on an expedition to search for Tom’s Blenheim and the grave of the pilot who successfully landed the crew’s stricken aircraft, but lost his own life in the crash and you can help us. Using expert guides and meticulous research, the team hopes to trace Tom’s incredible journey through this subtropical savanna. Do the local tribes remember the incident? Can the team discover the crash site of the Blenheim bomber? And crucially will they be able to locate the grave of the dead pilot giving him a chance at repatriation to his mother country and family nearly 80 years later?

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