bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

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jopaerya
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by jopaerya » 08 Jan 2021 20:07

Thanks Simon

MPHS Flandern
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by MPHS Flandern » 09 Jan 2021 10:29


pierrot
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by pierrot » 09 Jan 2021 14:26

Dear all

For the ones not really knowing this strongpoint, here some information.

Stp Roon was an infanterie strongpoint built around the casino of the Middelkerke. Middelkerke is a seaside resort located west of the Ostend. The casino was built on a recess of the dyke making a perfect place to build a defensive position with good flanking fields of fire along both side of the dyke.
Stp Roon March 1943.jpg
IGN 1948.jpg

On this place, the Belgian army already built some defences in 1938-39 with the installation of one of the 13 APX tank turrets built along the Belgian coast. The Germans improved these defence position a lot, the casino itself was fortified and many bunkers were built.
Two R502's were built on both side of the casino, an double VF observation bunker was built in front, the basement of the casino was reinforced on some places to act as shelters, two VF bunkers were built on the tennis ground behind the casino and a network of trenches were dug out between all these constructions. In 1944 a R612 was added to the position flanking to the west direction.
The position has been occupied by different units during the war (24 I.D, 304 I.D, 306 I.D., 39 I.D., 171 R.I.D., 48 I.D. and even 712 I.D.(for a couple of weeks only). For the Germans, it was part of the KVA A3, LXXXIX ArmeeKorps, 15 Armee. In September 1944, the position has been abandonned by the retraiting Germans without any fighting taking place there.
Hereunder a plan from the position as it was in 1945. Numbers refer to my own inventory.
PNO-A3-IV-M-Plan2.jpg
Nr 10 found completly exploded in 1945. Probably a munition bunker
Nr 11 R502 with bunker code Ost-W 010-216
Nr 12 Double VF observation bunker. On the top of it another observation post in brick has been erected. According the given description, the dimension and the identification on pictures it should be the same kind as the bunker pictured here below
EMD-A2-VI-P34.jpg
Nr 13 bunker found expolded in 1945. The external dimensions are about 9.6 x 9.6m, walls of 1m and one entrance. it doesn't look to be a standard type or Regelbau.
Nr 14 unidentified VF bunker 15 x 11m external dimensions
Nr 15 Tobrukstand
Nr 16 Shelter built in the basement of the casino
Nr 17 Shelter built in the basement of the casino
Nr 18 Belgian APX tank turret
Nr 19 unidentified VF bunker 9.5 x 11m external dimensions
Nr 20 MG post with 3 loopholes in brickwork 4.5 x 5.5m
Nr 21 Tobrukstand
Nr 22 R502 with bunker code Ost-W 010-215
Nr 23 R612
R612 Stp Roon.JPG
Nr 24 small observation post built into the dyke found demolished in 1945
Nr 25 found completly expolded in 1945. Probably a munition bunker
Nr 26 small unidentified shelter dimensions 6 x 4m
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Last edited by pierrot on 09 Jan 2021 15:27, edited 3 times in total.

pierrot
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by pierrot » 09 Jan 2021 14:54

The propanga companies made some pictures inside this position. The most famous one are the ones showing an Alarm exercice with soldiers running out of the R502 (Nr22).
ADP-0221.jpg
ADP-0222.jpg
ADP-0223.jpg
And the one with the PAK 40 that was moved later in a R680 a few hundreds meters to the East of the Position. According a minefield plan from 1944, this R680 is not inside the limit of Stp Roon and belonged most probably to one of the numerous ZWN created in 1944 between the strongpoints. On the background, the observation bunker off course, but also the APX turret is visible on the first picture.
ADP-0224.jpg
ADP-0225.jpg
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Last edited by pierrot on 09 Jan 2021 15:15, edited 2 times in total.

pierrot
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by pierrot » 09 Jan 2021 15:08

Now some post-war pictures of this position:

A beautifull oblique view taken in January 1945 (Keele)
Keele 1945 Stp Roon.JPG
An old post card from the early 50 showing the VF bunker Nr 14. We see also on the background the roof of the R502 Nr 11 sticking out the ground, the roof has not been cut yet, so it means this picture is from before 1954.
W-0633.jpg
An interesting picture from 1945 showing VF bunker Nr 19 and the MG Post with 3 loopholes Nr 20
Atlantikwall Belgie Middelkerke.17.jpg
Belgian Engineers busy with the inventorising of the bunkers. Here above the observation bunker Nr 12
W-0636.jpg
Some demolition was carried out as well but it is not clear what is exploding on the picture as the R612 is still visible on the foreground. The R612 was demolished end 1945 together with the observation bunker Nr 12 and the R680 just outside the position
W-0635.jpg


Enjoy

Pierrot
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v60pih
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by v60pih » 09 Jan 2021 23:02

Thank you Pierrot for this beautiful information!

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AW
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by AW » 11 Jan 2021 10:40

merci Pierrot

greetz
Alex

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moonraker
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by moonraker » 11 Jan 2021 11:59

hello,
thank for the retour pièrrot :wink:

Me belfra-team

Dirk Peeters1
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Re: bunker found at middelkerke (BE)

Post by Dirk Peeters1 » 12 Jan 2021 14:51

the belgian tank turret construction is reused after the war
00 1.jpg
00 0.jpg
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