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Report - Rifle range, Burton, Staff's

Discussion in 'Other Sites' started by NiteLite41, Mar 31, 2011.

  1. NiteLite41

    NiteLite41 28DL Member
    28DL Member

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    http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=12344

    If anyone has more information on the place please pass it on.

    I find it pleasantly surprising that this impressive 150 year old structure is still in pretty good order and free from graffiti etc... and long may it remain so.

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    Not v.impressed by the accuracy, those bricks have taken a peppering.
    Now I understand why they made it so big.
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    Bullet holes - where they should be.
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    a prime target.:D

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    The metal pole is the first of several distance markers at about every 100yards away from the target area.

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    A view from the back.

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  2. bungle666

    bungle666 ....king of snake........
    28DL Full Member

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    There is plenty of history if you know where too look!

    Been having a nose around the old mappage for this area is VERY interesting indeed!

    this is in actual fact a 1100 yard rifle range that pre-dates BOTH world wars.

    the earliest map i have seen is the 1:2,500 scale 1883-1884 Staffordshire map, this place is indeed CLEARLY marked on that map and where the building is stood there does appear to be a structure, although it is smaller it is parabolic in shape as the centre of what you see above is today!

    the next interesting map is the 1902 1:10,560 scale map where it is again marked as Rifle range, with all the butts up to 1100Yds marked on the map! the area of the buildings appears on the map as little more than an earthwork or small structure marked "butts".

    The 1924 Staffordshire 1:10,560 has it marked again as "rifle range" "butts" and there is now a significant looking building on the site! due to a HUGE gap in the mapping, this leads me to think the building was erected during or before WW1. Also the 1100Yrd butt has now disappeared and the site has become a 100Yrd range! there are also the words "flagstaff" marked at the rear of the building, so by my reckoning this was for a massive flagpole to warn anyone in the area firing was going on.

    Now skipping to post WW2 and the 1955 Staffordshire 1:10,560. this is STILL marked "rifle range" and all the shooting positions up to 1000Yds are still marked, giving the impression of occasional use!

    1971 Derbyshire 1:2,500, much the same as 1955 TBH! shooting positions still marked, flag positions still marked! so thats 90+ years of use as a Rifle range!


    1972-76 Staffordshire 1:10,000 is where it all undoes! still marked "Rifle range" but that's it! the building is now marked more like an earthwork, the firing positions are no longer marked and the flag positions are gone! so i think its safe to assume the site was dead and finished by this time! still over 90 years of service aint bad eh!

    the 1982 map is the same as the 72-76 maps, marked "rifle range" but by the 90s this wording has also disappeared from the maps just leaving the appearance of a random earthwork!

    hope this bit of history helps!

    good pics of an interesting site there fella!

    B..
     
  3. okidoke

    okidoke 28DL Member
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    Hi I was brought up in this area! As a kid I spent my childhood playing there!

    I’ll fill you in with a bit of history. I can’t really say much more because both my parent's worked/served there. It was part of the Ordinance Dept. – that’s what we knew it as. My dad was a Military Police Officer who was stationed in the gate house. He was moved from Donington Military base Shropshire to serve here in the 1930's, where he met my mum who served in the canteen.

    It was used for riffle practice, as stated, up until the 1970's. The actual main buildings are now owed by B & Q Distribution. After its military use it became the site where 'Branston Pickle' was made!

    My mother still served her time in the officer's private quarter's up until she retired in the 70's. I could go on for ever with knowledge of this place! - great find, and thank you....
     
    #3 okidoke, May 18, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: May 19, 2011
  4. Ordnance

    Ordnance Moderator
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    Former COD Branston centred on SK23552162.

    Central Ordnance Depot (COD) Branston was situated on Burton Road, Branston, Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire. It was built in 1915 as the National Machine Gun Factory and was then taken over by Crosse and Blackwell in the 1920s, with the village giving its name to the world famous pickle that was first produced there.

    In the 1930s it became a silk factory and was taken over by the Army in the Second World War as one of the armies Central Ordnance Depots.

    It closed as an Army Depot c1967, when it then became Home Office Stores, supplying prisons and storing the former AFS 'Green Goddess' fire engines. The 'Green Goddesses', which were used by the military during national firefighters' strikes, they were moved a former Central Vehicle Depot (CVD) at nearby CVD Marchington at the end of the 1980s. Marchington was already a Home Office Store and both Branston & Marchington stored a range of 'Cold War' Civil Defence Vehicles & Stores (including ROC stores)

    In 2004, part of the former Depot was leased to B&Q and operated as a distribution depot for them by the logistics firm TNT. A massive fire at the beginning of 2006, destroyed millions of pounds worth of fitted kitchens stock. The buildings still remain Government property.

    The Rifle range was reported to be closed in 1965 for Military Usage, as was a smaller 30 mtr range at the former Marchington camp.
     
    #4 Ordnance, May 18, 2012
    Last edited: May 18, 2012
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