Watford ROC Group HQ No.5

June 24, 2011 | Posted in Bunker, Nuclear, ROC, Royal Observer Corp, Royal Observer Corps, Watford | By

Finally and as promised some Cold War content for you…Watford ROC Group HQ opened on 18th November 1961, finished operationally in 1968 and closed in 1973 before being sold in 1974. These days the site is owned by the Park Veterinary Centrewho’s surgery and offices are sited in theWW2 ROC buildings on the main road and use the bunker at the rear of the site for storage.Many original items have been stripped over the years but a vast amount of original features are still intact so it was well worth a visit.

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Market Deeping ROC Post – Northamptonshire Group

August 4, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, FSM, Nuclear, ROC, Royal Observer Corps | By

Opened – March 1960
Closed – September 1991
The last post visited as part of an ‘8 ROC Posts in one day’ tour and probably the mintiest ROC Post i’ve visited to date. Actually I didn’t really want to post this one up as it just serves as temptation for some morons to come and trash it and steal its contents but then I thought if I don’t post it up then someone else will…..its fate is sealed either way I guess…..hopefully someone will put a massive lock on it to protect this for future generations of visitors, who knows.

Some pix suffer from me experimenting with camera settings which I promise not to do while out in the field again…

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Castor ROC Post – Northamptonshire Group

August 3, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, FSM, Nuclear, Observation Post, ROC, Royal Observer Corps | By

Opened – February 1962
Closed – October 1968
Explored as part of an 8 ROC Posts in one day tour we visited Castor ROC Post, location of a well publicised suicide by a local farmer some years ago who hanged himself in the access shaft. Perhaps this has put off the chavs as the post is in no worse condition that when Sub Brit visited back in 1997, apart from the fact that the compound is now totally overgrown and it took us several laps of the site to locate the hatch and crawl on our hands and knees through the undergrowth.

Good deed of the day was rescuing a sick looking toad that probably fell down the severed at ground level FSM tube and bringing it back to the surface.

Also present at this site is a great example of an Aicraft Observation Post, originally this would have had a canvas cover on top and some steps.

I was experimenting with camera settings so apologies for the quality on some shots.

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Spalding ROC Post – Lincolnshire Group

August 2, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, Nuclear, Observation Post, ROC, Royal Observer Corps | By

Opened – October 1964
Closed – October 1968
Yet another post visited as part of an ‘8 ROC Posts in one day’ tour. We walked right past this one as the compound was totally overgrown. The hatch has been torn off for years but surprisingly it was bone dry inside. Some internal fittings still present such as the bed and no vandalism which is neat. Really nice and peaceful site with fantastic light outside.

As mentioned in my other reports for this day I was experimenting with camera settings (epic fail on most which got deleted ) so apologies for the quality.

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Moulton Chapel ROC Post – Lincolnshire Group

July 30, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, FSM, Nuclear, Observation Post, ROC, Royal Observer Corps | By

Opened – July 1960
Closed – October 1968
Explored as part of an ‘8 ROC Posts in one day’ tour sadly this was one of several sorry looking posts we came across. ‘Decorated’ my local morons in a fetching yellow and blue colour scheme, some smoke damage to the roof tiles and a shattered sump grate welcoming us below ground. The cupboard had been partially destroyed but there was an intact hand operated siren crate.

The compound was in a fantastic location on the edge of a cornfield and contains the demolished remains of a brick Aircraft Observation Post, also in the compound are several beehives….complete with LOTS of bees….needless to say we chose a swift and different exit on the way out as we had accidentally disturbed them on the way in.

Yet again I was experimenting with camera settings (epic fail on most which got deleted…) so apologies for the quality on some shots.

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Wansford ROC Post – Northamptonshire Group

July 29, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, FSM, Observation Post, ROC, Royal Observer Corps | By

Opened – February 1962
Closed – October 1968
Even more from the ‘8 ROC Posts in one day’ tour. We knew in advance that this one was badly trashed and that was certainly the case but we needed to visit to tick off some remaining Northants Group posts.

As previously stated I was experimenting with camera settings (epic fail on most which got deleted ) so apologies for the lame shots.

Also present at this site was a brick Aircraft Observation Post from an earlier time in ROC history, this would have been linked up to HQ with a land line using a Magneto Telephone.The other unusual item in the pictures is a very old cashbox from a BT pay-on-answer public phone box, quite what that was doing up here I don’t know, unless it was robbed then dragged up here to be prised open…

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Upwell ROC Post – Norfolk Group

July 28, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, FSM, Nuclear, ROC, Royal Observer Corp | By

Opened – October 1959
Closed – September 1991
More from the ‘8 ROC Posts in one day’ tour. Once we caught sight of the telegraph poles disappearing into a field we were well happy as this was a Master Post but sadly on reaching the compound it was a major disappointment as it was seriously locked down (pictures elsewhere show this to be very tidy inside). The exterior was a lovely shade of green though with no obvious damage to anything. Not sure if they built this too low by mistake but the FSM tube has an extension and the hatch is well low in the ground!!

Supposedly this has been bought by someone but I don’t know for sure. Whoever is taking care of it has secured it very well and as we were tight on time we couldn’t really spend time finding out.

A Tube Cam was also out of the question unless we had a monster can of EAC Plus Gas and a spare day…..we had neither 🙁

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Parson Drove ROC Post – Cambridgeshire Group (FSM Tube Cam)

July 27, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, FSM, Nuclear, ROC, Royal Observer Corp | By

Opened – March 1960
Closed – September 1991
Another post visited as part of an ‘8 ROC Posts in one day’ tour, Parson Drove had been ingeniously locked with a cleverly fitted mortice lock so became our first ‘fail’ of the day in respect of underground shots. The post was recently sold on eBay to someone in Oakham, Rutland but it looks like nothing has been done to it apart from the fancy lock.

Never one to be outwitted I broke out the Tube Cam Kit and did some ‘remote photography’. The interior looks to be the same as its always been with the red spray paint noted by Sub Brit back in 1999. My Tube Cam Kit is due to be modified in the future to provide precise shots, these ones are a bit poor but its better than nothing.

The famous Shetland pony is still there, it crept up on us and was attempting to eat Winch It In’s Canon kit while we had our backs turned doing the Tube Cam !!

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March ROC Post – Cambridgeshire Group

July 26, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, Nuclear, ROC, Royal Observer Corp | By

Opened – July 1961
Closed – September 1991
Explored as part of an 8 ROC Posts in one day tour we were surprised to find this site totally overgrown as supposedly someone had bought this post and was going to restore it, obviously something has gone wrong with this plan!.

The long paving slab path that runs from the compound to steps up to the main road was covered in a thick hedge and the compound itself is several feet high in brambles and nettles. As stated on Sub Brit this post was totally dug up and rebuilt during the 1980’s and it shows, the walls and interior are in superb condition and a damp-proof membrane is evident at the base of the hatch. Internally the air vents are of a different design, we couldn’t even see the rear, above ground vent due to undergrowth but pictures on Sub Brit show this to be of a different design too. Toilet area was fitted with slatted shelves and the ‘desk’ seemed different to many other ROC Posts.

I was experimenting with camera settings (epic fail on most which got deleted!) so apologies for the quality on some shots.

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Market Deeping Starfish Decoy Control Bunker

July 23, 2010 | Posted in Bunker, Decoy, QF, QL, RAF, ROC, Royal Observer Corp, Starfish | By

This was a bonus find while we were out on a ROC Fest day last week (8 ROC Posts in one day!!), I’ve not seen anything like this before but its believed to be a Starfish Bombing Decoy Control Bunker related to the (relatively) nearby RAF Wittering

If you know different the please post a comment and let me know.

The building has three rooms, one small room at the front, which is now buried and was possibly either a generator room or more likely a toilet, a 12ft x 10ft room to one side of the entrance corridor and a large 30ft x 12ft room. The large room has a ladder on the end wall going up to a hatch in the concrete roof which looked like at one time it had a brick surround. At various points in the roof were large circular holes and on the large flat concrete roof was evidence of mounting points, possibly for a ‘Micklethwaite’ type device or maybe another small platform/canopy. Surrounding this site are piles of broken brickwork and at least one Blast Wall which may well have covered the main entrance originally.

All in all an interesting find and despite the graffiti the place had a nice feel to it.

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