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Report - Stoke Orchard ROC/Trench/Battle HQ,Cheltenham, august 2014

Discussion in 'Other Sites' started by huey, Aug 12, 2014.

  1. huey

    huey 28DL Regular User
    Regular User

    Aug 4, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Quick re-visit to see the well known ROC post and half seagull trench at Stoke-Orchard. What a lot of people miss is the fact this was an important airport during the war with its own Battle HQ,control tower,six blister hangers,four grass runways,oil/fuel/munitions storage etc. It was used for pilot training and for emergency landings.It had just over 600 personel and 116 WAAF stationed here,whilst off duty they lived in a purpose built camp (designed by Billy Butlin of holiday camp fame,)just up the road.When the airfield was de-commissioned it became a POW camp for captured Italian soldiers who were put to use on local farmland.Incidentally that site became the well known (in this forum anyway) National Coal Research Establishment.
    Half Seagull Trench is in excellent condition still
    Inside..ends filled in,access through the slits
    Machine gun mount
    ROC entrance hatch(unlocked) vent shafts vandalised but still there,as is mast mount.
    Inside,tiny toilet room. original door etc,no hand pump but sump is dry
    Main room,bunkbeds etc gone,vent totally blocked up
    Original table,shelf and door.Not much room for 3 people.
    Mount for the GZI (Ground Zero Indicator) behind is the Bomb Power Indicator mount
    The forgotten about Battle HQ
    Speaking to a local I was told as a kid he played around the site and can remember going through a tunnel under the railtracks and coming up into another building but cant remember where! Negotiations are currently ongoing with the local whose garden the Battle HQ is in,hopefully I can report back soon with some pics/more info.
    Thanks for looking.

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