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Roadblock, Bracken Hall Green, Baildon Moor

A Scheduled Monument in Bingley, Bradford

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Latitude: 53.8545 / 53°51'16"N

Longitude: -1.8043 / 1°48'15"W

OS Eastings: 412972.034328

OS Northings: 439826.404216

OS Grid: SE129398

Mapcode National: GBR HRVW.50

Mapcode Global: WHC92.8C2X

Entry Name: Roadblock, Bracken Hall Green, Baildon Moor

Scheduled Date: 20 October 2015

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1420929

County: Bradford

Civil Parish: Bingley

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): West Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Baildon St John the Evangelist

Church of England Diocese: Leeds


Second World War roadblock, consisting of an anti-tank wall built of orthstats, set between two 'one-way' anti-tank ditches with counterscarp banks, and a dry-stone field boundary wall, adapted by the insertion of steel rail barrier sockets and three musketry loop-holes with an infantry slit trench to the rear.

Source: Historic England


Principal elements: Second World War roadblock, consisting of an anti-tank wall built of orthstats, set between two 'one-way' anti-tank ditches with counterscarp banks, and a dry-stone field boundary wall, adapted by the insertion of sockets to receive steel barrier rails and three rifle embrasures with an infantry slit trench to the rear.

Description: the roadblock built to obstruct an unclassified road called Glen Road, is situated at Bracken Hall Green, on the south-western side of Baildon Moor. The western side of the roadblock comprises an orthstat anti-tank wall set between two anti-tank ditches, in an area of common grazing land laying between the Bracken Hall Crags of Shipley Glen and the western side of Glen Road. The anti-tank wall consists of a 20m long, 2m wide, double row of orthostats, in-filled with earth and rubble, aligned roughly east-west, and varying in height from 1-2m. It appears to have been built to resemble prehistoric walling for camouflage purposes and sits between two ‘one-way’ anti-tank ditches. The ditch on the northern side is 3m wide and 1m deep, it has a slight counterscarp bank on its northern side and slopes gently down to the near vertical scarp beneath the orthostat wall; while the ditch on the southern side of the wall is 3-4m wide and 0.5m deep and also has a counterscarp bank. It is likely that both of these ditches have suffered from some degree of slumping and in-fill due to natural processes and colonization by scrub.

The field to the east of the roadblock is enclosed by a dry-stone wall, a 50m long section of this wall standing immediately to the east of Glen Road and including the curved section at the north-west corner of the field, forming part of the roadblock. An in-filled infantry slit trench which shows as a depression is situated in the field immediately behind the curved section of wall, which has three wide-splay rifle embrasures cut just above its base. Three blocks of timber each approximately 1.5m long by 0.25m square are laid end to end forming the lintels of the embrasures, which have been blocked with dry-laid stone. When the embrasures were inserted, the wall above the lintels was reconstructed and mortar was used to strengthen the stone joints. Two sockets with flat wrought-iron sheet lintels have been let into the side of the dry-stone wall opposite the orthostat wall and ditches; the sockets were for receiving the ends of the girders that formed the road block. To accommodate the sockets, the wall was reconstructed and mortar was used to strengthen the stone joints.

Extent of scheduling: the scheduling includes the full extent of the orthostat wall, the two ditches and associated counterscarp banks, a 50m long section of the dry-stone wall and the in-filled trench to its rear. The road is not part of the scheduled area; however, there remains the possibility of concrete sockets designed to receive steel rails that may be buried beneath the road surface.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

This Second World War roadblock is scheduled for the following principal reasons:

* Period: it contributes eloquently to an understanding of the broader defence policy adopted to resist invasion during the Second World War;
* Rarity: the roadblock is a rare example of an inland obstacle designed to control the flow of local traffic and to impede the movement of attacking airborne troops;
* Survival: the roadblock survives well and is readable, both as upstanding structures and as in-filled features:
* Diversity: the roadblock is a good example to demonstrate the diversity of designs and materials used;
* Potential: the roadblock has the potential to enhance our detailed understanding of the construction, function and use of this type of anti-invasion defensive structure during the Second World War.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Brown, I et al, 20th Century Defences in Britain, (1996)
Lowry, B, British Home Defences 1940-1945, (2004)
Wills, H, Pillboxes: A study of UK defences 1940, (1985)
CS Dobinson, Twentieth Century Fortifications in England. Volume II: Anti-Invasion Defences of WWII, 1996,

Source: Historic England

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