The Ministry of Defence has started an investigation after two men were killed when an historic aeroplane crashed at an air show.
Lieutenant Commander Bill
Murton, 45, and Neil
Rix, 29, were crewing the Fairey Firefly vintage naval aircraft when it came down near the Duxford airfield in Cambridgeshire, on the eastern side of the M11 at about 1430 BST on Saturday.
The aircraft was taking part in the Flying Legends Air Show at Duxford's Imperial War Museum, near Cambridge, when it went into a nosedive from which it never recovered.
Mr Murton, who was married with three children and lived in Somerset, was the
Commanding Officer of 727 Squadron based at Roborough, Plymouth, Devon.
He had served in the Royal Navy for 21 years and
was an experienced pilot who had been flying with the Royal Naval Historic
Flight for three years.
The Firefly was part of a fleet of vintage military aircraft based at the Royal Naval Air Station Yeovilton, Somerset.
Commodore Bill Covington, the commanding officer of RNAS Yeovilton,
said: "Bill was a most experienced and respected naval pilot with well over
5,000 hours flying time to his credit.
"He was a wonderful man, a fine naval aviator who lived for flying. All of us
are devastated by his death. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and
Mr Rix was aircraft fitter with the Royal Naval Historic Flight (RNHF) and was unmarried.
Commander Bryan Wood, the manager of the Flight, said: "Neil loved aircraft
and flying and was particularly proud to be associated with the Firefly.
"He was a most popular member of the Flight and our thoughts are with his
family and friends at this sad time."
Ted Inman, the director of the Duxford site, said carrying on with the show was the "right decision".
Explaining it was a "difficult call", Mr Inman said: "Initially there was a pause because our emergency cover was away at the accident.
"We had time to consider whether to continue with the show and on balance we felt that it was appropriate to do so when emergency cover was restored to the right level."
Mr Inman maintained that Duxford's accident record since it started hosting air displays in 1973 was "very good" and that Civil Aviation Authority guidelines were followed at all times.
"All the manoeuvres are geared above all to safety of the crowds and today's tragic events took place a long long way from the crowd," he added.
Air accident investigators this week called for a safety review at Duxford after a fatal jet crash on the nearby M11 motorway in June last year.
On that occasion, a privately-owned former Soviet air force L-39 military jet trainer came to rest on the motorway after going through the boundary fence at Duxford.