Record Details

NHER Number:33262
Type of record:Monument
Name:Site of World War Two searchlight battery

Summary

A World War Two searchlight battery is visible on aerial photographs. Three searchlight emplacements were present in a typical trefoil arrangement. Two further circular emplacements, for predictor equipment and possibly a light anti-aircraft gun, were located to the south of the searchlights. A small camp was located a short distance to the north of the searchlights.

Images - none

Location

Grid Reference:TM 4288 9310
Map Sheet:TM49SW
Parish:GILLINGHAM, SOUTH NORFOLK, NORFOLK

Full description

1945. RAF air photograph.
Shows searchlight battery consisting of three joining circular structures at grid reference with one 60m south, another 200m southeast. The field is currently arable set aside.
See (S1).
B. Cushion (NLA) November 1997.

September 2006. Norfolk NMP
A World War Two searchlight battery is visible on aerial photographs (S1). The central grid reference for this site has been amended from TM 4290 9300 to TM 4287 9308. Earthworks of three adjoining searchlight emplacements were present at TM 4287 9300. These were arranged in the typical trefoil plan with raised earthwork banks around the outside. Each of the circular emplacements had a diameter of approximately 12.5m. Two further circular emplacements were present to the south of the searchlights. The largest of these, with an internal diameter of approximately 12m and a 5m wide outer bank, was located at TM 4289 9293. A second isolated emplacement with an 11m internal diameter and a 2.5m outer bank was located at TM 4204 9291. These isolated emplacements to the south of the main cluster of searchlights are likely to have been for the predictor equipment and possibly a light anti-aircraft gun. To the north of the road were several buildings located along a small access road. It is likely that these formed part of the camp associated with the battery. At the northern end of access road at TM 4275 9329 were two concrete hardstandings. These were 9m square and positioned 51m apart on a northwest to southeast axis. A rectangular earth banked emplacement or pit was positioned halfway between these and slightly to their southwest. The function of this emplacement and hardstanding is not clear. The earliest available aerial photograph showing this searchlight battery dated to October 1945 (S1). By that time the site was abandoned and it appears that some buildings had already been demolished or removed.
J. Albone (NMP), 04 September 2006

Monument Types

  • MILITARY CAMP (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • SEARCHLIGHT BATTERY (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

---Map: Cushion, B.. Annotated Map of Searchlight Positions, Gillingham..
<S1>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1945. RAF 106G/UK/930 4103-4 16-OCT-1945 (NHER TM 4292A / TM 4392A).

Related records - none

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