Tuesday morning saw Dad and I drive back up to the coast and go to Arromanches first which I have blogged about here:
After we had been to the museums and had a bit of lunch (dinning was much better at Sword beach for what it is worth) we drove a couple of miles up the coast to the gun battery at Longues Sur Mer.
Built by the Todt Organization in 1943 the four gun battery is noteworthy in that it is the only one left in Normandy that has kept its guns in situ. The guns from other batteries were taken by scrap dealers post war. The gun bunkers are set back from the edge of the cliffs but there is an observation post there that would have once housed a rangefinder to provide firing solutions to the battery.
The guns and bunkers are set in a free to enter country park that you can just wander through as you wish, this is combined with a refreshing lack of commercialization and very little modern health and safety. The only bunker fenced off was the one that had suffered extensive damage.
The damaged bunker.
A 155mm gun of French manufacture with damage visible on its side.
A view of the gun’s breach from inside the bunker.
Another view of a gun- the notches in the concrete on either side were to give the guns as much traverse as possible.
There were lots of smaller tobruk pits and fighting positions around the site to provide local defence such as this medium mortar pit.
The two floor observation bunker.
The very thick concrete roof was held up by four very thin iron rods; although it does not look like it from this pictures there was stand up head room inside.
The view back from the observation bunker to the gun battery.
The view from the observation bunker back towards the Mulberry harbour remains at Arromanches.
After this we took the scenic route back to our holiday home taking in the the Goodwood battle area.