Thursday, December 20

Ibsley Common - World War II and the New Forest

After further feedback (thanks Jon) and some initial research of my own there's more information slowly appearing about goings on in this area, and the remnants left behind.

Its quite an amazing turn of events really. The initial post thread started out casually questioning a small ruin standing alone on a New Forest ridge. And since has been regularly unearthing a rich seam of recent military and social history.

Firstly some more pictures and location detail of various military remains in the area, tying in with the military airfield RAF Ibsley.

Next a very detailed piece from 1995 (Norman Parker's 'Wartime Secrets of the Forest') indicating the sheer size of the military area and the high level of secrecy surrounding it.

And then there's even a film tie-in with original WWII bomb testing footage from the range appearing in the 1969 film "Mosquito Squadron" showing the original Highball bomb drop . With some pictures and schematic of the bomb here.

To quote Wartime Secrets (which the local library is now trying to source for me)
"As the war drew to its close, Grand Slams (bombs) rained down on the previously impenetrable reinforced targets of Europe, destroying them one by one."

And let's not get started on the bronze age barrows in the same area.

Phew. Lots to gaze over whilst the imagination soars as next time I wander across what once appeared as a simple New Forest heathland, open to the sky.

Is that the far off drone of long vanished bombers from high overhead?

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I went in this bunker today. There are several rooms, so take a torch when you go. You can also get in the one in the background, but that involves going down a vertical shaft with a couple of iron rungs.
Thanks Jon - yet another site to add into the route I've planned out to work my way around these spots, although this one is a bit off the main route, despite being nearer the road.

Sounds like a spooky place to visit!
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