Posted: 21 August 2009 18:20

The Army was critical of the roads at Norman's Bay, but only one roadblock was listed here in late 1941. There was no surviving evidence of it, although I did find an odd array of pimples.

This set of 16 pimples is not in situ; the lines are so crooked I believe them to have been moved onto this verge beside the bridge leading into the Beachlands Estate at Pevensey Bay.

Roadblock recce

Moving onto the northern road into Norman's Bay, I arrived at the bridge at which the sole roadblock was listed at. If you're on the ball, then you'll have realised that, just like the "Maginot Line" bridge at Langney, this bridge also crosses the anti-tank ditch I described back in 2007.

Roadblock recce

Listed here were 4 hairpin rails, 7 sockets and 18 cylinders; the ratio of rails to sockets is not unusual and the number of sockets required to bring the block up to standard was 14 with an appropriate increase in rails. However, it seems that the development of the block was not scheduled to go ahead.

There were actually two other roadblocks listed in early 1941 at Norman's Bay, but it seems that they had been dismantled by the time the survey was being conducted towards the end of the year.

- Pete



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Anti-tank ditch

Ditch designed to hinder movement of tanks and AFVs. Ditches could be entirely artificial or existing ditches or natural features such as rivers, might be dredged, shaped and revetted to improve their effectiveness.


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.


Small anti-tank block in the form of a truncated pyramid. Pimples were used to extend anti-tank obstacles and roadblocks and were intended for use on soft ground.


Concrete-lined shafts dug into road surfaces into which rails or RSJs (hairpin or straight) could be inserted to form a roadblock. When not in use, a wooden cover was placed over each socket.

This site is copyright © Peter Hibbs 2006 - 2018. All rights reserved.

Hibbs, Peter Roadblock recce (29) - Norman's Bay (2018) Available at: Accessed: 14 December 2018

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