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Human remains found at Bluebird site

The Bluebird was recovered from the lake in March
The Bluebird was recovered from the lake in March  


CONISTON, England -- Divers have found human remains near the area where Donald Campbell's powerboat, Bluebird, was recovered, police have said.

A post mortem and DNA tests are to be carried out, the UK Press Association reported.

The wreck of Campbell's boat was recovered from the bottom of Coniston Water in March.

Police said the human remains were found on Monday by civilian divers, the news agency said.

Inspector Paul Coulson, of Cumbria Police, said: "At approximately 1pm today, partial remains of what is believed to be a human body were recovered from the bed of Coniston Water in Cumbria.

"It was close to the site where the wreckage of Donald Campbell's boat, the Bluebird, was recovered."

Campbell was attempting to break his own world water speed record of 276mph, on January 4, 1967, when the boat vaulted from the lake's surface and somersaulted before crashing, killing him instantly.

Minutes earlier, during his first run, he achieved a speed of 297 mph (475 kph), then turned the craft around without refuelling and without waiting for his wake to settle.

The crash is blamed by some on the waves of the wake disturbing the otherwise glassy lake.

In a poignant interview before his fateful run, Campbell said the boat was an example of British engineering leadership.

"And it does I think also show that the British, when they make their minds up, can jolly well overcome all obstacles and achieve anything," he said.

The location of Bluebird -- and Campbell's body -- eluded his family and divers for more than three decades.

But it was discovered 150ft at the bottom of Coniston, in the Lake District, at the end of last year.

Campbell set seven world water speed records in Bluebird between 1955 and 1964.

He also captured the world land speed record of 403 mph (645 kph) with his Bluebird car in 1964, becoming the only person to hold land and water records at the same time.

His father, Sir Malcolm, also held both land and water records.

Despite being subject to a 5mph speed limit, a local by-law covering Coniston states that attempts at the world water speed record are exempt.

The current record is held by Australian Ken Warby at 317.6 mph.







RELATED STORY:
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• Bluebird Project
• The Donald Campbell Homepage
• The Bluebird Electric Project

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