LOGISTICS FOR D-DAY

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Home Front History

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I would really appreciate all and any help members may be able to give. I am researching the supply chain and the logistics in the months leading to D-DAY, specifically sites and locations used for storage of fuel, food, vehicles, medical supplies, ammunition and so on. If any buildings/sites still exist perhaps you can point me in the right direction. Many thanks. The results of my research will be put into the public domain as an educational and historical resource. Photo shows oil pumping station at Northington, Hampshire
 

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Dirus_Strictus

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You should look at the Northern sites of the Ministry of Supply first. These were stocked up ages before D-Day and their contents gradually moved Southwards as D-Day got ever closer. Visiting Clumber Park Notts. in the very early 50's with Mum and Dad, I can remember seeing low, open ended Nissen Huts full of all manner of stuff - carboys of chemicals, winchesters of the same, boots, blankets, firehoses and metal, wooden and cardboard boxes in the hundreds. There just in case the Cold War erupted I suppose; all of it was Civil Defence oriented - Not much there for the Armed Forces, from what I saw and learned about later.
 

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You should look at the Northern sites of the Ministry of Supply first. These were stocked up ages before D-Day and their contents gradually moved Southwards as D-Day got ever closer. Visiting Clumber Park Notts. in the very early 50's with Mum and Dad, I can remember seeing low, open ended Nissen Huts full of all manner of stuff - carboys of chemicals, winchesters of the same, boots, blankets, firehoses and metal, wooden and cardboard boxes in the hundreds. There just in case the Cold War erupted I suppose; all of it was Civil Defence oriented - Not much there for the Armed Forces, from what I saw and learned about later.
That's interesting thank you I have not picked up on even though I know convoys from the USA bought goods into docks like Liverpool and Glasgow. Appreciate the anecdote as well.
 

PhilW

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I would really appreciate all and any help members may be able to give. I am researching the supply chain and the logistics in the months leading to D-DAY, specifically sites and locations used for storage of fuel, food, vehicles, medical supplies, ammunition and so on. If any buildings/sites still exist perhaps you can point me in the right direction. Many thanks. The results of my research will be put into the public domain as an educational and historical resource. Photo shows oil pumping station at Northington, Hampshire
Surviving Fuel barges and Landing Craft laid up in Poole harbour, August 1974
 

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PhilW

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I would really appreciate all and any help members may be able to give. I am researching the supply chain and the logistics in the months leading to D-DAY, specifically sites and locations used for storage of fuel, food, vehicles, medical supplies, ammunition and so on. If any buildings/sites still exist perhaps you can point me in the right direction. Many thanks. The results of my research will be put into the public domain as an educational and historical resource. Photo shows oil pumping station at Northington, Hampshire
I remember seeing a surviving bit of a Mulberry harbour in Weymouth Harbour, but in the 1970's. No idea if it is still there
 

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I remember seeing a surviving bit of a Mulberry harbour in Weymouth Harbour, but in the 1970's. No idea if it is still there
There is one in Langstone harbour by Hayling Island, I've driven an inflatable around it when I did a course for Scuba diving. We even had to moor up to it. Here is another landing craft that sunk in Dundee Harbour
 

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Home Front History

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Surviving Fuel barges and Landing Craft laid up in Poole harbour, August 1974
Hi PhilW. Another fascinating fact that I was unaware of so many thanks for sharing the photographs and info. Interestingly this morning I have been told that several Bren Gun Carriers that were stored for D-Day were rolled into a large pit and covered up 75 years ago in the New Forest.
 

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There is one in Langstone harbour by Hayling Island, I've driven an inflatable around it when I did a course for Scuba diving. We even had to moor up to it. Here is another landing craft that sunk in Dundee Harbour
Received with many thanks. How much equipment is still stored in the UK or rotting away one wonders?
 

night crawler

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Hi PhilW. Another fascinating fact that I was unaware of so many thanks for sharing the photographs and info. Interestingly this morning I have been told that several Bren Gun Carriers that were stored for D-Day were rolled into a large pit and covered up 75 years ago in the New Forest.
There was story like that about BMC in Oxford duming a load of cars in one of Gurndons pits and covering them up. I have to wonder how much truth is in the stories.
 

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The dumping of cars is a definite myth in War Time. We were so short of iron and steel that the MOS was going around the streets of Britain cutting down wrought iron fences for the blast furnaces of Sheffield! There were still dumps in Sheffield that contained piles of them in the mid 50's. Dad was a commercial traveller and I can remember him pointing out a dump during one of his many trips to Sheffield during the summer holidays at that time, when we used to accompany him as a family
 

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To answer a few of the points raised:
Gurndons were a sand a gravel company and they were taken under Ministry of Supply control for WW2 as the sand was vital for sand bags and the gravel for runways nothing was going to get in the way of critical material supply definitely not a load of cars. A few private individuals hid there cars in tunnels, caves etc for the duration of the war and the story is I suspect an extrapolation of that.
Clumber Park was part of Central Ammunition Depot Warsop along with 3 other nearby estates there was about 60.000t of the stuff in Clumber alone, the park was also used for vehicle testing a product development facility, a POW camp and a training camp for soldiers so a bit of everything given the vast size of the place.
The fuel barges and LCM pictured area post war vessels not used on D-Day.
The Mulberry Harbours (x2) were build al round the country as far north as Cairnryan in Scotland where some beetles survived on the beach into the 2000's the parts were towed to many south coast harbours between Portland and Dungeness in time for D-Day. The first components of Mulberry were towed to France the day after D-Day and both harbours were partially operational within a week. Unfortunately on 19 June D+12 there was a massive storm. Mulberry A the American one was far more advanced on the surface than B the British one but they were well behind on the sub-surface moorings etc so harbour A was destroyed by the storm the surviving bits being moved to Arromanches and added to the British Harbour which was well anchored and survived.

The biggest logistics disaster was PLUTO the petrol pipe lines, 4 were planned to arrive within 4 weeks of D-Day but all were very late (many weeks), the first line failed during laying the second had a ships anchor dropped on it and was destroyed so some bright spark decided to increase pressure on the surviving 2 lines resulting in both bursting within a day so the original PLUTO delivered 0.016% of the fuel required. PLUTO 2 to Calais was a big success. This meant that the RASC petrol supply depots in UK had to stay here filling jerry cans until 1945 instead of deploying to France to fill cans from PLUTO. The cans went to France by ship and were unloaded from anchorage inside the Mulberry break water directly into DUKW's which took the cans ashore and then well inland to the front line and later the Bayeux depot. Basically the jerry can operation saved the whole Overlord operation.
Nigel Attwood
 

night crawler

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To answer a few of the points raised:
Gurndons were a sand a gravel company and they were taken under Ministry of Supply control for WW2 as the sand was vital for sand bags and the gravel for runways nothing was going to get in the way of critical material supply definitely not a load of cars. A few private individuals hid there cars in tunnels, caves etc for the duration of the war and the story is I suspect an extrapolation of that.
Clumber Park was part of Central Ammunition Depot Warsop along with 3 other nearby estates there was about 60.000t of the stuff in Clumber alone, the park was also used for vehicle testing a product development facility, a POW camp and a training camp for soldiers so a bit of everything given the vast size of the place.
The fuel barges and LCM pictured area post war vessels not used on D-Day.
The Mulberry Harbours (x2) were build al round the country as far north as Cairnryan in Scotland where some beetles survived on the beach into the 2000's the parts were towed to many south coast harbours between Portland and Dungeness in time for D-Day. The first components of Mulberry were towed to France the day after D-Day and both harbours were partially operational within a week. Unfortunately on 19 June D+12 there was a massive storm. Mulberry A the American one was far more advanced on the surface than B the British one but they were well behind on the sub-surface moorings etc so harbour A was destroyed by the storm the surviving bits being moved to Arromanches and added to the British Harbour which was well anchored and survived.

The biggest logistics disaster was PLUTO the petrol pipe lines, 4 were planned to arrive within 4 weeks of D-Day but all were very late (many weeks), the first line failed during laying the second had a ships anchor dropped on it and was destroyed so some bright spark decided to increase pressure on the surviving 2 lines resulting in both bursting within a day so the original PLUTO delivered 0.016% of the fuel required. PLUTO 2 to Calais was a big success. This meant that the RASC petrol supply depots in UK had to stay here filling jerry cans until 1945 instead of deploying to France to fill cans from PLUTO. The cans went to France by ship and were unloaded from anchorage inside the Mulberry break water directly into DUKW's which took the cans ashore and then well inland to the front line and later the Bayeux depot. Basically the jerry can operation saved the whole Overlord operation.
Nigel Attwood
I know about Grundons being a sand and gravel, they owned most of the pits around here and still do but I doubt very much anyone hideing stuff in tunnels as they were pits. Most are filled in my SODC using them for land fill. The story came from one of the Apprentices I knew either at work of collage
The beetles you mentioned in Scotland are at Garlieston and I'm miffed I never clocked them when I was there years back. Here is a link to Garlieston's part and I never clocked this in the bay either but here is a beetle for you
 

Home Front History

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To answer a few of the points raised:
Gurndons were a sand a gravel company and they were taken under Ministry of Supply control for WW2 as the sand was vital for sand bags and the gravel for runways nothing was going to get in the way of critical material supply definitely not a load of cars. A few private individuals hid there cars in tunnels, caves etc for the duration of the war and the story is I suspect an extrapolation of that.
Clumber Park was part of Central Ammunition Depot Warsop along with 3 other nearby estates there was about 60.000t of the stuff in Clumber alone, the park was also used for vehicle testing a product development facility, a POW camp and a training camp for soldiers so a bit of everything given the vast size of the place.
The fuel barges and LCM pictured area post war vessels not used on D-Day.
The Mulberry Harbours (x2) were build al round the country as far north as Cairnryan in Scotland where some beetles survived on the beach into the 2000's the parts were towed to many south coast harbours between Portland and Dungeness in time for D-Day. The first components of Mulberry were towed to France the day after D-Day and both harbours were partially operational within a week. Unfortunately on 19 June D+12 there was a massive storm. Mulberry A the American one was far more advanced on the surface than B the British one but they were well behind on the sub-surface moorings etc so harbour A was destroyed by the storm the surviving bits being moved to Arromanches and added to the British Harbour which was well anchored and survived.

The biggest logistics disaster was PLUTO the petrol pipe lines, 4 were planned to arrive within 4 weeks of D-Day but all were very late (many weeks), the first line failed during laying the second had a ships anchor dropped on it and was destroyed so some bright spark decided to increase pressure on the surviving 2 lines resulting in both bursting within a day so the original PLUTO delivered 0.016% of the fuel required. PLUTO 2 to Calais was a big success. This meant that the RASC petrol supply depots in UK had to stay here filling jerry cans until 1945 instead of deploying to France to fill cans from PLUTO. The cans went to France by ship and were unloaded from anchorage inside the Mulberry break water directly into DUKW's which took the cans ashore and then well inland to the front line and later the Bayeux depot. Basically the jerry can operation saved the whole Overlord operation.
Nigel Attwood
Thank you for this information. It adds depth to several interesting matters.
 

Natters5

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1617016286431.png

These are the ones at Cairnryan (Old House Point) I would guess the ones at Garlieston parted company with the tugs when heading south as the manufacture was at Cairnryan using up stocks of cement etc left over from constructing the harbour. I used to see these quite regularly when traveling back from Northern Ireland (Army) to visit my parents in Dumfries. Plus I surveyed the whole coast there to write a feasibility report for MoD on reopening Cairnryan port and the military railway to service the Army in Ulster in the 1970's.
 

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These are the ones at Cairnryan (Old House Point) I would guess the ones at Garlieston parted company with the tugs when heading south as the manufacture was at Cairnryan using up stocks of cement etc left over from constructing the harbour. I used to see these quite regularly when traveling back from Northern Ireland (Army) to visit my parents in Dumfries. Plus I surveyed the whole coast there to write a feasibility report for MoD on reopening Cairnryan port and the military railway to service the Army in Ulster in the 1970's.
Great photo and very interesting information for further research. Many thanks.
 
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