Record Details

NHER Number:27388
Type of record:Monument
Name:Probable World War Two Direction Finding Station

Summary

A World War Two structure is visible on aerial photographs. It is first visible on photographs taken in May 1944. It was probably a Direction Finding station, used as a navigation aid by Allied aircraft, although it resembles a pillbox disguised as a lighthouse or mill. Similar structures have been mapped elsewhere along the Norfolk coast (e.g. NHER 43313).

Images - none

Location

Grid Reference:TG 5059 1694
Map Sheet:TG51NW
Parish:HEMSBY, GREAT YARMOUTH, NORFOLK

Full description

May 2005. Norfolk NMP.
A probable pillbox is visible on aerial photographs (S1) to (S3), first as an extant structure and subsequently demolished to ground level, centred at TG 5060 1695. It is first visible on aerial photographs taken in May 1944 (S1); its absence from earlier photographs (S4) indicates that it must have been constructed after 10th February 1941. It had been demolished by July 1946 (S3), although its concrete or masonry base remains visible. Like other, similar sites (e.g. NHER 38952) the purpose of the superstructure is not clear. It might have acted as camouflage for the pillbox below, disguising it as a windmill or lighthouse. Alternatively, it might have housed military equipment.

The pillbox or structure itself and its base may both be polygonal in plan, but the photographs are not clear enough to distinguish their exact form and they have both been mapped as circular. It is possible that this site corresponds with an otherwise unidentified Type 24 pillbox, now demolished, listed in a gazetteer at TG 5040 1690 (S5).
S. Tremlett (NMP), 25 May 2005.

December 2006. Norfolk NMP.
Comparison with other sites, such as NHER 43313, which have been identified by Roger Thomas of English Heritage suggests that the ‘pillbox’ described above is instead a World War Two Direction Finding station. It would have formed part of the ‘Coastal System’ of such sites, which were used as navigation aids by Allied aircraft.
S. Tremlett (NMP), 17 December 2006.

Monument Types

  • PILLBOX? (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • RADAR BEACON (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)
  • RADIO STATION (World War Two - 1939 AD to 1945 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

<S1>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1944. RAF 106G/LA/17 3010-1 28-MAY-1944 (NMR).
<S2>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1945. RAF 106G/UK/832 3191-2 23-SEP-1945 (NHER TG 5016D, TG 5016A).
<S3>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1946. RAF 106G/UK/1634 5040-1 09-JUL-1946 (NHER TG 5117A, TG 5017B).
<S4>Vertical Aerial Photograph: RAF. 1941. RAF 268F/BR172 (VA) 45 10-FEB-1941 (NMR).
<S5>Monograph: Bird, C.. 1999. Silent sentinels: the story of Norfolk's fixed defences during the twentieth century.. p 78.

Related records - none

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