Portbury Anti-Aircraft site.

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Veteran Member
Veteran Member
Sep 20, 2005
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Hazards: Cattle sometimes in field.

Status: Private land owned by a local farmer.

Recommended? : Only if you're into ww2 stuff.

Construction of the specially designed reinforced concrete emplacements
to hold 3.7 inch and 4.5 inch guns began in 1938. These followed a number
of standard patterns which developed throughout the war, but generally
they were octagonal or square, about 40 feet across and comprised an open
concreted enclosure with shoulder-high external walls. Around the inside there
were ammunition alcoves where the shells would be stored on wooden racking.
In the centre, the steel framework of the hold-fast, for anchoring the gun,
was embedded in the concrete of the base. The emplacements were grouped
in fours and eights, half batteries or full batteries.

Armament varied from 3-inch guns to 3.7 inch, 4.5 inch, 40mm Bofors and the
5.25 inch gun which could sling a shell eight miles into the air. The Portbury
site was manned by the 237 Battery, 76th Heavy Anti Aircraft Regiment. As
well as the 928 Balloon Squadron who flew 12 barrage balloons at the site.

This anti aircraft site shot down a German Heinkel 111 on 25/09/1940, the
aircraft crashed nearby at Racecourse Farm, the German crew all survived
and were captured. On 22/02/1941 a He111 bomber was crippled by gunfire
from a neighbouring anti aircraft site, the plane then struck a barrage balloon
at the Portbury site and tore off a wing, the aircraft crashed into the mud
flats at Portbury Wharf, only one of the five man crew survived and became
a prisoner of war.



Sep 20, 2005
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Bristol, UK.
Aaah, the Barrage Balloon Sqaudron explains the 'extras' at this HAA then.

Shame about the pisspoor paint job by the local re-enactment bunch.

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