Twentieth Century Defences in Warwickshire

"What the dickens is that"? "What on earth is that concrete block doing there"? "Who, in their right mind, would build a brick but there, miles from anywhere"? These are questions that you may have asked yourself, if like me you are a frequent traveller around the lanes of Warwickshire and have seen strange objects at the side of the road or in the middle of a field, miles from the nearest habitation.

The answers can now be found in a well researched little tome recently published by Tempus Publishing of Stroud entitled; Twentieth Century Defences in warwickshire Steve Carvell has painstakingly compiled an interesting photographic and readable guide, which once you have picked up you will find very difficult to put down.

The book deals with the buildings and structures associated with the defence of Warwickshire; and how during the early part of the Second World War, the county was divided up into sectors, separated by 'stop lines' made up of natural barriers such as the rivers and prominent features such as canals and railway lines; these stop lines were augmented by man made obstacles such as tank traps, road blocks and pill boxes all with the object of making life difficult for the enemy if an invasion took place.

There is a detailed description of the various types of pill box and antitank obstacles and the location of those which survive. Royal Air Force bases and Army camps are described at length and there is a whole host of information dealing with other impedimenta of defence including antiaircraft gun emplacements, prisoner of war camps and even Warwickshire's own Bombing Ranges.

This book of 160 pages is packed full of information and interesting photographs, plus and excellent gazetteer which lists full details of the condition and location, including a Grid Reference, of every defence site in the County. I would certainly recommend it to any one who is interested in walking, cycling and twentieth century history; in fact priced at £12.99 Steve Carvell's "Twentieth Century Defences in Warwickshire" would make a superb stocking filler for that man who is difficult to please.

This article has been kindly written by Nimrod

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