Cold War Sites

Protected Area Wood Norton – The BBC’s Cotswolds Bunker

If the balloon went up and a Nuclear War started then the BBC would have broadcast a set script to help you feel at ease that auntie was still broadcasting! That broadcast could have come from many of the Regional Government Headquarters (RGHQ) around the country which each had a BBC Studio. However it could equally have come from the BBC’s very own secret bunker. Wood Norton Hall in Worcestershire was bought by the BBC in 1939 as a place it could relocate to from London in the event of war and it saw use during the Second World War acting as an emergency broadcasting centre. Its use continued however […]

Hope Cove RGHQ 7.2 Gets Emergency Listing Protection to Stop Destruction

Historic England granted an emergency Grade II listing to the former R6 ROTOR Station and Regional Seat of Government (RSG) at Hope Cove in Devon. The complex had recently been purchased by a private buyer to be used for “Wine Storage” however significant destruction to the exterior walls had begun including plans to add an external door to the lower bunker area. Hope cove was created as an R6 ROTOR Station in the early 1950’s and converted during the cold war was converted to be a Regional Seat of Government RSG (later Regional Government Headquarters RGHQ 7.2). It consists of a semi-sunken bunker with one ground level floor and 1 […]

Drakelow Tunnels

Under the Worcestershire countryside just north of Kidderminster lies a secret which has its roots in World War II and the Cold War. A massive series of underground tunnels known as Rover 1D Shadow Factory or most recently as Regional Government Headquarters (RGHQ) 9-2. Drakelow Tunnels were originally constructed under the UK Governments World War II Shadow Factory scheme which provided for underground factories to continue operating even under bombardment. These were mainly vehicle and aircraft manufacturers and were involved in the production of Aircraft, Aero engines and munitions. Workers blasted an area of nearly 300,000 square feet underground to create a series of 4 tunnels wide enough to accommodate a shift of […]

25 Years since the Berlin Wall fell

On the 9th November 2014 events took place in Berlin to mark the 25th anniversary of the Berlin Wall coming down. So we thought it would be an ideal time for a post looking at back at one of the most iconic structures of the Cold War. Following World War 2, Germany was divided into West and East. The Western side being controlled by the Allied nations of Britain, France and America. The Eastern side was to be controlled by the Soviets. Its capital Berlin, which sat inside East Germany (German Democratic Republic GDR), was to be further divided into West and East in the same way. Berlin ended up […]

A close encounter of the Star Wars kind

On a recent location exploration BCW revisited RAF Greenham Common. The sole mission for the day was to get an update on the Ground Launched Cruise Missile Maintenance Area or GAMA. Most people know GAMA as the missile silos located in fenced off south west corner of RAF Greenham Common. Since our last visit it still hasn’t found a full time use and the owners still refuse to to entertain any idea of preserving it for the Public, presumably as it wouldn’t produce them a profit despite GAMA being a scheduled monument. However on visiting it was apparent that some of the doors had been repaired. This in itself was […]

Greenham Common Control Plans in Progress

To kick off our site move with some good news is also a good plan and its great to hear that the plans to turn the Control Tower at the former RAF Greenham Common are progressing well. Greenham Parish Council successfully bid for the property earlier this year with plans to preserve the building and turn it into a visitors centre. Planning applications are now under way for it to receive listed status and be converted into the visitors centre. The planning application and plans can be viewed here. RAF Greenham Common became infamous when in the 1980’s the US placed nuclear capable ground launched cruise missiles (GLCM) at the […]

Hack Green ROTOR Station

One of the countries best preserved “Nuclear Bunkers” is the R6 type ROTOR Station at Hack Green, Cheshire. Hack Green began life as a World War II decoy bombing site for the nearby Crewe train station before it became RAF Hack Green when its job was to utilise the newly designed RADAR systems to protect the Western Midlands from attack as part of 21 fixed UK RADAR stations on the mainland. Following World War II and at the beginning of the Cold War the UK re-examined its existing radar and found it wholly inadequate to deal with the threat of jet aircraft. With this in mind the UK embarked on […]

Greenham Control Tower Update

The deadline for submission of bids for the sale and future use of the former control tower at RAF Greenham Common was midday on the 7th September 2013. We are happy to report that Greenham Parish Council successfully submitted their bid in time. However, West Berkshire council confirmed (via twitter) that they received a total of 7 bids. So sadly the sale to a private buyer is still not out of the question. Hopefully West Berkshire Council will look beyond the financial gain and see that it is entrusted to the hands of Greenham Parish Council to ensure its preservation and future public use as an information centre and museum. […]

York Cold War Bunker

Opened in the 1961 York ROC Headquarters served a vital role in the UK’s civil defense during the cold war. The primary role of the ROC (Royal Observer Corp) was to monitor and report on Nuclear Attacks and post attack Fallout. Located to the east of York in the Acomb area, the Semi-Sunken bunker served its function silently until it was decommissioned in the early 1990s. As a group HQ for the ROC it was connected to a network of small ROC Posts which would report information about the attack and fallout to the bunker which was then collated and dispersed as required. It would also have been used to […]