Posted: 3 January 2007 23:15
I came across two roadblock sites today on my way to Bexhill to try and get a problem with my new laptop (I'll post something about this at a later date) fixed.
Although I'd taken the exact same route only a week previously (on my way to buy the laptop), I hadn't noticed this cylinder at the roadside in Windmill Hill.
There didn't appear to be any other evidence in view; the location would have been a logical place for a roadblock, being near a road junction.
I haven't yet uncovered a defence scheme for this exact area, but I expect that this roadblock was probably manned by the local Home Guard platoon.
The second roadblock I had noticed previously - lined up neatly on the edge of a garage forecourt these five cylinders are again near a road junction leading into Sidley, near Bexhill.
I actually remember seeing these cylinders many years ago, but didn't know what they were at that time.
As I didn't have my camera or GPS receiver with me last week, I didn't stop to investigate.
I've had a quick look in the local defence scheme, and, although I've only roughly converted the grid reference to the Cassini Grid in use at the time, the following passage may describe this particular roadblock:
Double row of concrete blocks each side of rd, slots for rails. Sandbagged posn. on side of rd. and in house.
Again, there was no other evidence in the area, but a project for the future is to plot all my lists of roadblocks on a map and go and investigate!
Cassini Grid was the map reference system in use on British military maps from 1919 until the introduction of the National Grid Reference system still used today on Ordnance Survey maps. The two systems are not related, and so wartime Cassini references need to be converted to modern National Grid. More information can be found on the maps page.
Reinforced concrete cylindrical obstacles with a shaft down the centre in which could be inserted a crowbar for manhandling, or a picket for barbed wire. Cylinders were 90cm high and 60cm wide and deployed in groups of three as a more effective alternative for buoys.
A military plan of defence for a specified area. Defence Schemes were issued at numerous levels. Defence Schemes were later known as Plans to Defeat Invasion on the orders of General Montgomery.
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Hibbs, Peter Roadblocks (2020) Available at: http://wwww.pillbox.org.uk/blog/216517/ Accessed: 3 July 2020
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