SURVIVORS of the Shoreham air crash have described their terror and agony after being engulfed in a “fireball”.

The Old Bailey heard that people ran for their lives, with one man thrown across a child’s buggy and another leaping out of a burning car.

Their harrowing accounts were read to the jury in manslaughter trial of pilot Andrew Hill.

Eleven people were killed when his 1950s Hawker Hunter fighter jet plummeted on to the A27 while it was performing a loop-the-loop stunt on August 22, 2015.

House husband Paul Snellgrove was watching the show with his family, including his granddaughter.

He was taking photographs of the Hunter as it turned into a loop.

At first he thought it was going to do an “impressive manoeuvre” but then noticed it was going slow and low, the court heard.

As the plane came down on the dual carriageway, Mr Snellgrove heard a “crunch”.

He described being thrown over the buggy and his daughter.

“I started to feel a burning sensation down my face,” he said. “I was in absolute agony.

“My daughter said ‘Dad, your face and ears are gone’. I shouted ‘Run’.

“Everyone that I had seen before the crash had gone. I don’t know what happened to them.”

He was “on the point of passing out” but was told to stay awake before he was treated at the scene.

He said: “I was in a real state and people asked me what happened. I just wanted to be reunited with my family.”

Software engineer Thomas Milburn, from Worthing, had cycled to Shoreham, where he found a spot to take pictures.

In a split second, he realised the Hunter was going to crash.

He said: “I thought it was going to hit me. From my sitting position I immediately lay down, put my head in my hands and closed my eyes.

“I heard an explosion. I felt a wave of pressure coming towards me. Through my eyelids I saw a bright orange light. I felt extreme heat through my skin.

“I really thought I was going to die. I thought I would be consumed by burning fuel.

“I realised I had been engulfed or partially engulfed by a fireball. Everything around me was silent.

“A few seconds after that I was able to get to my feet and I stood up. I realised I was in shock.

“I remember thinking ‘Don’t look around’. Immediately before the crash I saw a lot of people sitting on the ground. I was sure all those people were in the direct line of the plane and must have been killed.

“I just kept running down the road towards the airfield.

“As I was running I realised the skin on my hands and arms felt loose.”

Mr Milburn suffered burns to his arms, legs and back, the court heard.

He said: “I felt I was lucky to be alive. Very weary, a sense of disbelief about what happened. It seemed like a dream.”

Retired Peter Reed leapt from his burning car while it was still moving to escape the carnage.

He said he began to panic when he heard a “massive bang”.

“I had the strong impression that my vehicle was on fire and it was going to explode,” he said.

“I decided I needed to get out of my still-moving vehicle. I leapt out of my car. I saw my car continuing along the road, finally coming to a stop.

“I felt my arms were hot where I had been burnt but otherwise I felt unscathed.”

He said there was thick black smoke and cars burning.

He heard someone saying “Where’s the pilot?” and realised it was a plane crash.

“At the time my vehicle was engulfed in flames I was absolutely terrified.”

Since the crash, Mr Reed said he had suffered flashbacks and had difficulty sleeping.

Trained pilot David Miles said he heard the Hunter before he saw it.

He said he thought the plane was flying very low and slow and was surprised it was attempting a loop.

He said: “I was already thinking this was not looking good at all. I was beginning to be very fearful the Hunter was going to crash.

“I could not understand why he had begun the manoeuvre.

“I was just about to walk forward and look around the trees to see what happened when I heard a big bang.

“I did not think - I just ran as fast as I could in the opposite direction.”

The jury was shown a video of the Hunter attempting a loop-the-loop.

The plane came down behind a line of trees then exploded in a huge ball of fire.

Iain Campbell, managing director of, which filmed the show, described the defendant as enthusiastic, professional and modest.

The Market Rasen-based managing director, said in a read statement: "At the time the Hunter went down I actually had my back to it. I heard the crowd's dismay at the crash."

On the footage, a commentator could be heard to exclaim: "That's such a beautiful airplane", moments before the crash.

As it exploded, the commentator said "Oh", then became silent.

Hill, 54, of Sandon, Buntingford, Hertfordshire, denies 11 charges of manslaughter by gross negligence.

The trial continues.