Wire on low wooden poles; 8). The battery had its own Würzburg Dora radar position and command bunker. Up to 7,000 Organisation Todt workers in Guernsey built mainly in two years, between 1941 and 1943, the bulk of the fortifications. [8] A power station was built in the Bouet by OT. [16]:63 Army troops were rotated to Alderney for three month tours of duty. The OT organisation designated the Channel Islands work area as Insel Einsatze.[10]:29. Five camps were built, however most OT workers went into requisitioned houses. [7]:66 This compares to the £2-10-0 a week offered by the States of Guernsey. At Fort Saumarez L’Eree headland, a trench system with machine gun and a Tobruk pit has been opened up and is accessible to the public.[16]:179. Liberation. [14]:174 More exotic camouflage, including disguising positions as houses were used. Many Dutchmen and others who were brought to Guernsey by the Germans stay… Thousands of foreign prisoners and labourers were shipped to the Islands to complete the construction. If necessary, timber supports were installed, then the process started again. He ordered additional men to the Islands and, having decided the defences were inadequate, lacking tanks and coastal artillery, he instructed the Organisation Todt (OT) to undertake the building of 200-250 strongpoints in each of the larger islands. L’Ancresse common has, in the middle of the golf course, the six gun Flak Battery Dolman, in concrete emplacements that could be used for a dual purpose as they commanded sea approaches with a 14,000m effective range. They are the most obvious symbol of German construction. SUBSCRIBE: http://www.youtube.com/c/VicStefanu - Let's visit the WW2 German fortifications of Guernsey. The "Westbefestigungen" (Inspector of Western Fortresses) was given responsibility for oversight and was required to generate bi-weekly progress reports. Granite stones were built into some concrete walls to give a natural stone finish. Some of the OT supervisors were sadistic. Service was compulsory in the militia for every man in the Island. Rodney fired seventy-two 16-inch shells. Cranes and concrete mixers were sourced. [5] There were over 200 standardised armour parts. From April, Tours of Guernsey will be offering walking tours around the Scharnhorst Battery, the bunker network on the Fort Hommet headland, and the not-seen-before site at the Mirus Battery. OT transport was brought to Guernsey, mainly French vehicles dating back to 1914, to supplement horse-drawn transport. Aerial photograph of Vazon Bay with Stützpunkt Rotenstein at the top, Resistance in the German-occupied Channel Islands, Civilian life under the German occupation of the Channel Islands, Fort Hommet 10.5 cm Coastal Defence Gun Casement Bunker, "World War II anti-landing devices found in Guernsey", Guernsey Grammar School and Sixth Form Centre, Policy and Resources Committee of Guernsey, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=German_fortification_of_Guernsey&oldid=993985887, Military history of the Channel Islands during World War II, Channel Islands articles missing geocoordinate data, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. The Allies knew the locations of casemates as the RAF had undertaken photographic flights during the construction years.Aerial photograph of Vazon Bay with Stützpunkt Rotenstein at the top[25] In addition, a few messages giving some detailed information, had been smuggled out of the Islands. Bruno spiral barbed wire; 3). Fortress engineers and OT workers returned to France to work on. 10.5cm Gun Casement.JPG 2,560 × 1,920; 1.21 MB An additional 13 being mounted in open field positions. 4 is now an occupation museum. This example shows a bunker disguised as a house. As a result of this, the island is flooded with German bunkers and fortifications which can now be explored by members of the public. The Channel Islands were seen as a perfect stepping-stone to the invasion of the Great Britain. 'Wish you were here!' Guernsey received two command tanks, 12 normal tanks, and five flame-throwing tanks.[16]:83. The Germans repaired the battery within a few weeks.[16]:123. Download this stock image: German WW2 fortifications on Guernsey coastal defences - MPA878 from Alamy's library of millions of high resolution stock photos, illustrations and vectors. They therefore had a high level of skills and quickly worked out the details of what was needed.[3]:8. Netzknotenpunkt (Telephone network bunkers) were built to protect vulnerable exchanges. [24]:2, Some positions were buried under soil and landscaped with plants and trees. Using the Regelbau standardized plans, each site was excavated normally using manual labour, sometimes needing explosives, the materials excavated generally being kept close by. Holes through walls for ventilation pipes and cables, doorways and escape routes being put in before the concrete was poured. These bunkers were used in addition to the use of hotels and large houses that made more amenable surroundings for the officers. [4]:9 [18]:294, Machine guns protected within casemates, on top in Tobruk pits, or in trench systems, some with thin overhead protection. [16]:101 Naval Range-finding Tower MP 3 at Pleinmont, which has 5 observation levels and had a radar unit on the roof, has become a museum, open to the public. Massive prop supports were needed for the 2–3.5 metre thick ceilings. On 2 June 1941 Adolf Hitler asked for maps of the Channel Islands; these were provided the next day. Lily James plays free-spirited journalist Juliet Ashton, who forms a life-changing bond with the delightful and A command and an observation bunker completes the major fortifications. Oct 28, 2020 - Explore Marcel Edwards's board "world war 2 Guernsey German soldiers 1940-1945" on Pinterest. [4]:30, Dummy positions were set up, including using logs to simulate guns and dummy minefields. [4]:63–4 [16]:178, 3.7 cm Flak and 5 cm Flak provided medium support (3,000-5,000m effective range) and 2 cm Flak were located for close protection of facilities, some in concrete emplacements (2,000m effective range). Others may be looked at, clambered over, and a few can be entered with care. Each observation slit of a tower observed for one particular battery and was fitted with range finding equipment. On 2 June 1941 Adolf Hitler asked for maps of the Channel Islands; these were provided the next day. The chapters from the original book have been reproduced in a set of ten paperbacks. The defence shelter with … This weekend marks 75 years since the beginning of the liberation of the Islands of Guernsey after the Second World War. View the maps of Guernsey used by the Germans during World War II. A number of junctions on the route also had sentry and machine gun positions built into granite walls. during the occupation of Guernsey in WWII. [9]:179–180 The OT hospital was at Ruette Braye, its fuel depot at Grandes Rocques, and timber and cement stores at St Sampson.[7]:26. Fortifications were improved in the Channel Islands, manned by professional soldiers and the Guernsey militia who would help to defend the Island for the next 600 years. The two Würzburg and two Freya radar units at Fort George, Guernsey,[4]:63 were repeatedly attacked from the end of May 1944 on. There is now incontrovertible evidence that a top-secret launcher site for V1 missiles was being constructed on the island - but these ones are likely to have contained Sarin. Under the direct orders from Hitler Guernsey was to become an Impregnable Fortress and work commenced on the building of fortifications. The concept of lineal defences having been discredited in World War 1, the current idea was hedgehog defences with all round visibility and support from other positions giving interlocking fire. Ruins of German WW2 fortifications at the coastline of Guernsey, Channel Islands, UK Batterie Dollman gun pit, a WW2 German installation on Pleinmont headland, Guernsey. [22], Widerstandsnest (Resistance nest) (WN) formed a smaller defensive zone, filling in between SP's, and protecting specific points, like artillery batteries or a radar station. [7]:115 Detailed death certificates were filled out and the deaths were reported to OT in St Malo. The Island had sand pits, away from the coastline that had had the salt washed out. [4]:9 A casemate with a 10.5 cm gun has been restored at Hommet headland, north of Vazon and is open to the public. Clearance in the wood along t… [4]:56–9, Land artillery was situated to fire on landing beaches and inland. The island of Guernsey has … Beach sand and pebbles would be used as a last resort.[7]:43. In Guernsey there were five batteries, each of four 10cm Czech artillery, which had a range of 9.6 kilometres (6.0 mi). The resulting construction work in the Channel Islands was extensive; it required thousands of workers and massive supplies of cement and steel. Shuttering for concrete walls and if the ceiling was to be done, overhead supports were installed and concrete poured. [7]:19 OT would carry out the majority of the work. Huge World War Two bunker that Hitler built on Guernsey goes on sale for £155,000 and could be turned into a holiday let. A visit by Dr Todt, who was also Minister of Armaments, took place in early October.[7]:16. The lowest levels of manual labourers were treated like slaves. The smaller Freya radar was less visible. [7]:19, Headquarters of the 7,000 strong OT in Guernsey was established at Sausmarez park in December 1941. Guernsey and its neighbouring islands have a unique distinction which sets them apart from the rest of the British Isles. Because the Germans expected to invade the United Kingdom in the autumn of 1940, they decided that expenditure on defences for the islands would be a waste. Luftwaffe fighter groups JG27 and JG53, equipped with Me Bf 109s, had been based during Kanalkampf in Guernsey in 1940. [13]:57 Some of the workers were Jews; around 1,000 French Jews spent time in the Channel Islands. Commanding Officer of the German garrison, Lieutenant-General Rudolf Graf von Schmettow, nephew of Gerd von Rundstedt commander of OB West (Commander-in-Chief West),[1]:195 ordered the writing of a 500-page book that described the fortifications in great detail, illustrated with maps, photographs and coloured drawings. By 1944 Guernsey’s coastline was covered in concrete fortifications. Guernsey WW2 bunker to open to public. [11]:58, Anti-tank artillery was in short supply. A colossal 8% of the entire Atlantic Wall’s concrete was poured into the Islands and they held more guns than the If they were from the Eastern Bloc, a deduction of 55% was made to pay for the cost of overseas reconstruction. This took the troops in Guernsey up to 12,000. De bezetting van de Kanaaleilanden verwijst naar de militaire bezetting van de Kanaaleilanden door nazi-Duitsland die duurde van 30 juni 1940 tot de bevrijding op 9 mei 1945.De Kanaaleilanden omvatten de Kroonbezitten van de baljuwschappen Guernsey en Jersey, die geen deel zijn van het Verenigd Koninkrijk en ook de kleinere eilanden Alderney en Sark omvatten. Alderney was considered too well-protected against aircraft attack so HMS Rodney had the mission of shelling it. Guernsey received a few tracked anti-tank guns, but relied more on guns such as the 3.7 cm Pak 35/36, fifteen 5 cm Pak 38, and eight 7.5 cm Pak 40. Wire barrier around the dugout; 15). In this section you will find: Guernsey Occupied - this is a past exhibition about the occupation in general. into an impregnable fortress as part of his infamous ‘Atlantic Wall’, heavily fortifying the only British territory he would ever conquer. The German designs incorporated certain standard features such as entrance door at right angles, armoured air intake, 30mm steel doors, ventilation, telephones,[4]:7 internal walls lined with wood, and an emergency exit. [1]:196 Reinforced with additional Heer units including 16th Machine Gun Battalion and 213th Panzer Battalion, and Kriegsmarine and Luftwaffe units. 1. The work would continue as planned, despite the death of Dr Todt in a plane crash in February 1942. [1]:197 The outcome was a decision to provide for the “permanent fortification” of the Islands to make an impregnable fortress to be completed within 14 months. Mines; 4). Whilst the Luftwaffe and Kriegsmarine had their roles in protecting the islands from the Allies, the occupying forces put their main effort into land defences aimed at repelling a seaborne or airborne assault. We have seen some come back for holiday/memorial days. The Naval Signals HQ at St Jacques in St Peter Port was the main communications centre. From the beginning of 1943 further construction work became a lower priority as the by then existing defences were sufficiently strong. 319 ID provided the bulk of troops for the whole of the Channel Islands, it became the largest division in the German army. Whether the Islands were impregnable was never tested, except for Battery Blücher in Alderney. Volunteer and conscripted labour would receive much better treatment than would forced labour. [8] The original defence order was reinforced with a second order, dated 20 October 1941, following a Fuhrer conference on 18 October to discuss the engineers' assessment of requirements. Panel, made from the wooden poles; 12). One of the most significant periods in the Channel Islands’ history was the German Occupation during World War II. [12] Other sources of labor were Poland, French camps full of Spanish Republicans who had fled Spain after losing the civil war, and 1,018 out-of-work French North Africans from Algeria who were living in the south of France. Here is a quick overview of what happened on each Island. The island of Guernsey has been fortified for several thousand years, the number of defence locations and complexity of the defence increasing with time, manpower and the improvements in weapons and tactics.. Several Strongpoint groups made a Verteidigungsbereich (Defence area)[23], Hohlgangsanlagen (cave passage installations) (Ho) were built to store vehicles, ammunition, food, fuel and equipment, Ho. Apr 8, 2016 - Explore Digital History Archive's board "WWII Fortifications" on Pinterest. Also, each route was given a number. Skilled labourers brought over from Germany and Europe were provided with a suitable wage. When it became clear that conquering Britain would be impossible, Hitler issued orders to convert the Channel Islands They worked 12-hour shifts, seven days a week, and were allowed one half-day a month off.[14]:168. [7]:56 It features accommodation bunkers and two fortress quality ammunition bunkers, all linked by deep, concrete-lined trenches. Fortification in Guernsey was colossal during WWII including bunkers, forts, gun emplacements and tunnels to help create Hitler's Atlantic Wall. Minefeilds; 2). French Renault Char B1 tanks, destined for Rommel in North Africa in early 1942, also were diverted to the Channel Islands. [7]:36 Contractors brought equipment and vehicles. See more ideas about guernsey, world war, channel islands. Personnel shelters, such as a Type R621 shelter designed for a section of 10 men, had two concealed exits and a ringstellung or Tobruk pit were used in many locations, as were 5 cm and 8 cm mortars. The Islands of Guernsey are what’s known as an ‘archipelago’ – a collection of islands located on the English Channel between England and France. Many Russians were liberated by the British in Guernsey and Alderney. Individual troops – field fortifications, slit trenches etc. See more ideas about fortification, wwii, siegfried line. Camouflaged barrier and machine-gun nest; 10). A 90 cm gauge railway was constructed, running from the harbour in St Peter Port north to St Sampson and on to L'Ancresse, before running down the whole of the west coast to L’Eree. These employees were paid and provided with accommodation, better food, time off, leave[11]:42 and comforts. OT, formed in 1933, was a construction organization that organised and supervised the work of a number of engineering and construction companies, as well as supplying a large labour force. They mined all the beaches. Anti tank walls built at the high water mark. Each location had defences and facilities to suit its specific needs, the thickness of walls, floor, and ceiling were standard. [16]:104 However, U-Boats in Guernsey were too vulnerable to air attack. [7]:59–60, It was not just men that became OT workers; a number of women also found themselves in work camps. It comprised three bunkers: types V142, M172 and V192. Over 16,000 OT workers were brought to the Channel Islands, of whom 7,000 came to Guernsey. It had the largest artillery pieces in the Channel Islands, tanks, and 12,000 troops:[1]:204 one soldier for every two civilians on the island, compared to France which had a 1:80 ratio, or higher. Hundreds of reinforced bunkers, gun emplacements Published. On the 30th June 1940 German forces invaded Guernsey. OT – most tunnelling, quarrying, railways, roads, loading and unloading ships, supervising civilian construction firms, controlling civilian labour and “St” fortress type constructions. Fortifications. At the end of the reign of Henry VIII, in 1546 work was begun on building a fortification on the site that would become known as Essex Castle, the only remains are the current North and West walls of the fortification. Over 300 large concrete constructions were built in the Channel Islands. machine gun posts, observation posts, battery locations, etc.) Barbed wire and minefields would have protected the nest.[4]:37. Albert Speer replaced Todt. The initial plan was for two towers to observe a target and through measuring angles determine its distance and therefore grid reference. [7]:45 HQ and command bunkers were built for the Fortress Commander at La Corbinerie west of Ville au Roi, connected to one for the 319 Divisional commander. [1]:200, Consumable materials were sourced: cement, steel, timber for shuttering, sand and aggregate. The Regelbau (standard build) system used books of plans for each of over 600 approved types of bunker and casemate, each having a specific purpose. One cubic metre of concrete contained 400 kg cement, 1,800 kg aggregate and sand, 170-200 litres water. 1,100 OT workers remained in Jersey in October 1943, of which 530 were Islanders. Six Marinepeilstände (MP) observation towers were built on high points. Other buildings used as headquarters included the Crown Hotel, which served as the Harbourmaster's office. 244,000 m³ of rock were excavated out of the Channel Islands, only a little less than the 255,000m³ in the whole of the rest of the. Metal strengthening bars were wired together and the wooden shuttering was installed. Guernsey, although the smallest of the two, was given special treatment and had 12,000 troops inland, that’s one German soldier for every two civilians. The German Festung Guernsey book recorded 616,000m³ of concrete used in Guernsey, almost 10% of the concrete used in the Atlantic Wall. 4 tunnels at La Valette in St Peter Port, to hold 480 tons of fuel. [4]:67–8 Artillerie Abteilung 1265 HQ was at Quatre Vents Estate, St Martin. Jump to navigation Jump to search. Tunnels are sealed or locked as they are especially dangerous. They were badly fed and clothed and were beaten and punished for minor offences;[11]:33 the Germans considered them expendable and worked some to death. In these clips you see some of its famous fortifications including those built by the German occupations forces … Initially the Germans built only feldmässige Anlage (field-type construction) positions. Today, many bunkers can be viewed and even explored, “The Germans laid barbed wire all along. 200 men worked to provide facilities for a garrison of 200 soldiers.The capture of Sark by the French in 1549 ensured the work would continue and additional funding was obtained. Wood; 16). Cavities filled with rubble. OT gave Guernsey the code name Gustav. Fortifications of Guernsey. 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