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Thread: Anti-Aircraft Operation Rooms Bunker, Cardiff 2014/15

  1. #1
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    Default Anti-Aircraft Operation Rooms Bunker, Cardiff 2014/15


    I grew up in a town near this AAOR Bunker and heard stories about people stumbling across it in the forest when I was younger. The bunker become almost an Urban Legend at one point - and I can remember a time that I even thought it did not exist! Have visited this site on 2 occasions and have had 2 very different experiences that I would like to share with you (sorry if it looks a lot to read, but I like a good story haha, hope you enjoy)-

    April 2014 - I do a lot of walking / hiking in my spare time. On this particular afternoon I was alone and walked Caerphilly mountain and into Wenallt forestry (Cardiff). It was then I remembered some supposed landmarks given to me during some recent pub talk for the location of the Bunker. I decided to abandon the walk and make it my mission to find this bunker and finally see it for myself. Surprisingly, I found it quite easily and took a good look around the site resulting in me finding an open doorway into the bunker - Result! I walked in and then around a partition wall which instantly blocked out any light. It was then I realised that I was not prepared for this - not only did I not have a torch but I had no way of knowing what was an inch in front of me! I luckily had my small digital camera with me so I could take a photo / flash which would show me where I'm going..... and so I went on. So everytime I flashed I saw in that instant a corridor, doors to the left or right, a room's contents, a staircase, etc. I happily wandered around for a good while - and then my mind began playing tricks. I started wondering things like - when was the last time I charged the camera battery? What would I do if the battery suddenly died? Would I ever find my way out of this concrete maze in the blackness? What would I do if the next time I flashed there was someone stood in front of me?!!! (yes, my mind can be very cruel at times!). I'm not usually spooked very easily, but as soon as these thoughts entered my brain I was doomed. I manically flashed my way around the corridors until I finally found the exit and daylight....Relief! I knew there was more to explore so I'd definitely be back - and next time, I'd be properly equipped with my usual camera , torches.... and company!

    September 2015 - Myself and Jon6D had been on a great and successful day out exploring, and was on the drive home. We both felt like we had that one more place in us - and it was then the Bunker popped into my mind. He had never been there and always wanted to so was very very keen. As I drove, I excitedly told him all about my experience the previous year. Plus as I'd been there before, there would be no searching for the place, or gaps in the fence or shiftily hanging around looking for an entrance - it would just be "grab your camera and enjoy" - a perfect end to a great day. We parked up and I led the way straight to the bunker, and then I confidently walked around it to show him the entrance..... which had been breeze blocked up. The disappointment was unbearable, and an awkward silence followed.....

    I suppose the moral of this story is that if you intend on returning to a place don't leave it 17 months like I idiotically did!!! Obviously, the photos below are from my first visit (as my second visit's photos just contain Jon's glum face). The photos were taken as my light/guide rather than me actually taking a photograph - so please bear that in mind when viewing haha!


    History
    The Wenallt anti-aircraft operations rooms (AAOR) - a half-submerged bunker built in the increasing frost of the 1951 Cold War. The site was a vital ops room. It had dormitories, canteen, sick bay, water storage, air filtration, power generators and a pulse-proofed Faraday-caged communications room. Later the former AAOR became the main BT war headquarters for Wales. The distinctive curved glass galleries were stripped out, and new dormitories, air conditioning, canteen etc., were installed in the 1970s but the work was abandoned before completion and the bunker is now disused although the adjacent BT radio site remains in service.

    Hope you enjoy the photos....





























    Last edited by Vertigo Rod; 10th Feb 16 at 16:28.

  2. Thanks given by: ajarb, flyboys90, HughieD, Jon6D, jsp77, krela, Locksley, Mearing, oldscrote, Rubex, Scaramanger, SlimJim, tazong, thorfrun, tumble112, UrbanX, ww2sam
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  4. #2
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    Brilliant write up Rod, really enjoyed that, I haven't giving up on getting back in the place, just need to lose a few pounds before I can fit in that vent in the last photo, good job buddy :o

  5. Thanks given by: Vertigo Rod
  6. #3
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    I like that a lot - well photographed. Shame the vandals have got in there and done there thing.

  7. Thanks given by: Vertigo Rod
  8. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by HughieD View Post
    I like that a lot - well photographed. Shame the vandals have got in there and done there thing.
    Thank you Hughie - it had been used as a base for raves for a while plus suffered a few fires. You're right - it is a real shame to see it like this

  9. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon6D View Post
    Brilliant write up Rod, really enjoyed that, I haven't giving up on getting back in the place, just need to lose a few pounds before I can fit in that vent in the last photo, good job buddy :o
    Thank you Jon - glad you enjoyed, tickled myself writing it!

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  11. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vertigo Rod View Post
    it had been used as a base for raves for a while
    It was yes, happy memories. ;) That was a long time ago though, and before the pikey metal stripping and the fires started by local scrotes.

  12. Thanks given by: Vertigo Rod
  13. #7
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    Nice write up and photos Vertigo Rod :)

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  15. #8
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    Cool stuff! Pity the mongs got to it, looks like there would have been some interesting stuff inside.
    Guntish Gent

    Pics 'n' Ting


  16. Thanks given by: Vertigo Rod
  17. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by krela View Post
    It was yes, happy memories. ;) That was a long time ago though, and before the pikey metal stripping and the fires started by local scrotes.
    Chill out boss, remember your blood pressure, I liked your report VR and some nice pics. Thanks
    Smiler
    😁

  18. Thanks given by: Vertigo Rod
  19. #10
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    Interesting post and a good write up. Pity about the vandalism.
    When the going gets tough - the tough get going.

  20. Thanks given by: Vertigo Rod
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