David Purley

As a life-long Grand Prix fan I have always been both impressed and deeply saddened by the David Purley George Medal incident.

For those that do not know, Purley, a former officer in The Parachute Regiment was a Formula 1 driver and he won the GM attempting in vain, to save poor Roger Williamson in the Dutch Grand Prix 1973.

Anyway, I have seen Purley mentioned on the forum before, but I cannot seem to find it when I search, but not to worry, the reason I am posting now is that I have discovered a song by the Manchester band 'Fraction' about him and I just thought I would post the link in case anyone wanted to download it.

It is free.

The video is also on you tube.

Very moving indeed, if you have not seen it before.

RIP Roger and David

I remember seeing it live on TV - and the fury of James Hunt for the marshals who stood by and watched as Purley tried to rescue the burning Williamson...
I was at Sandhurst with David,and introduced him to his first wife.He was in a wave of outstanding Para Reg officers,who joined in 1968,and had been a tom in the Guards,before Sandhurst.He was killed stunt flying at his parent's aerodrome on the south coast.A great man and a great loss.RIP.

Thanks for replying, I knew I had read here somewhere that a member or two served with him, but I could not find it on a search.

I ilke the song, though I have never heard of 'Fraction'.
I knew David very well ,our paths crossed in the service,same course at Ashford and in hospital , we raced our wheelchairs at the KEVII in Midhurst , got told off for marking the polished floors ! and when he was at his fathers company Lec refrigeration in Bognor regis who sponsored his racing team, I still have a tool box of his with the LEC team sticker on it.
It's nice to see that he's still remembered


Like all good men, gone but never forgotten. (Especially among motor racing fans)

What was Purley like when in the service?
BlotBangRub, check your PM's



It was spooky to see this thread earlier today. Having not thought about David Purley for years, I was trying to look something up about him on Google only last week. I cannot recall what it was, now? .... trying to recall the type of plane he was flying when he fatally crashed? ..... when it was he died?

I have now found this information here:


...... and it says Pitts Special stunt bi-plane on 2nd July 1985.

I (unfortunately) lived in Bognor Regis for far too many years.
Consequently I knew many people who knew all the Purley family well.
I knew David's mother and had met his most recent wife a few times.
My brother was at school with David's most recent wife.
On the afternoon or evening that David Purley was performing stunts in his Pitts Special and, fatally crashed, my brother was wind-surfing nearby and was interviewed (and on TV) as a witness to the crash.

Here is a link to the David Purley Memorial page. It has numerous links to other related pages.


I would be interested to hear what any of you who actually knew David Purley think about the tribute song by 'Fraction' that is linked in my original post?

PS I am not a journo, or connected with the band in any way!

PPS I have been to Bognor a few times. Only things I can remember are the lovely Rachael who I was visiting (to keep with the motor racing theme I met her on a trip to the San Marino GP and she was a marshall at events back home) and there being a big 'Scalectrix' place outside the train station!


Thank you for that link, BlotBangRub.

As for the song:
(1) I didn't know David (just his Mum and a couple of meetings with the most recent wife).
(2) I can't access the song due to my legendary, primitive operating system not allowing me to make necessary upgrades.

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