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Edingham Munitions Factory

A Scheduled Monument in Abbey, Dumfries and Galloway

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Coordinates

Latitude: 54.9416 / 54°56'29"N

Longitude: -3.805 / 3°48'18"W

OS Eastings: 284469

OS Northings: 562264

OS Grid: NX844622

Mapcode National: GBR 1CW9.0C

Mapcode Global: WH5X6.J290

Entry Name: Edingham Munitions Factory

Scheduled Date: 5 October 1998

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM6789

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: 20th Century Military and Related: Magazines; Industrial: chemical

Location: Urr

County: Dumfries and Galloway

Electoral Ward: Abbey

Traditional County: Kirkcudbrightshire

Description

The monument comprises parts of a remarkably well-preserved example of a World War II explosives factory, with buildings and earthworks illustrating the function of the main elements of the production of explosives very clearly. The factory was used for the manufacture of nitroglycerine and cordite. The buildings were erected by Sir Robert McAlpine and Sons in 1940 and used throughout the war.

The complex covered 555 acres, 334 acres within the factory security fence. A short siding ran from the railway near Southwick Station to the factory and a 2 mile length of main line ran inside the factory. There were 240 separate structures as originally built, and in addition to the railway the factory had its own complex road system. However, the buildings were designed to be of a temporary nature, and because of the inevitability of the deterioration in the materials used (poor quality brick and concrete) only a selection of the best-preserved and most representative structures are to be scheduled, including explosives manufacturing buildings, storage magazines, processing plants, elements of the transport system and the defensive pill-boxes.

The areas to be scheduled are marked in red and numbered on the attached plan.

1. Nitrating plant, at grid reference NX84056280 - four brick and concrete structures built within massive earthen banks, accessed by brick and concrete tunnels.

2. Magazines, at NX84406225 - long, narrow brick and concrete

structures built then covered with earth mounds to form safe

underground storage for unstable explosives: many of the doors and fixtures still survive. (Divided into areas 2a and 2b.)

3. Small scale processing sheds, at NX84436285 and NX85006325.

Wedge-shaped single storey brick buildings, lighted by small-pane

windows high in the front elevation, over a concrete walkway. Doors, windows and some fixtures survive intact. Mostly single pile, but one double-pile building, with a flat roof. (Two separate groups, areas 3a and 3b.)

4. Viaduct, at NX84876293

5. Batch processing plants, at NX85006365

6. Three brick-built pillboxes defending the N perimeter of the site, at NX84046312, NX84346302 and NX84596366. (Areas 6a, 6b and 6c respectively.)

The area to be scheduled encompasses the visible remains listed above and an area around them in which traces of associated activity may be expected to survive. It is divided into 10 unequal areas, all of which are marked in red on the accompanying map extract. The area around the nitrating plant (1) is irregular in shape with maximum dimensions of 250m NNW-SSE by 130m WSW-ENE. The area around the magazines (2a and 2b) is irregular in shape with maximum dimensions of 470m NNW-SSE by 330m NE-SW, excluding the new road, which divides this area into two. The area around the westernmost small scale processing shed(3a) is irregular in shape with maximum dimensions of 230m SW-NE by 150m WNW-ESE. The area around the easternmost small scale processing plant (3b) is sub-rectangular with maximum dimensions of 110m N-S by 100m E-W. The area around the viaduct (4) is circular with a diameter of 85m. The area around the batch processing plants (5) is irregular in shape with maximum dimensions of 160m N-S by 80m E-W. The area around the westernmost pillbox (6a) is circular with a diameter of 40m. The area around the middle pillbox (6b) is circular with a diameter of 30m. The area around the easternmost pillbox (6c) is circular with a diameter of 30m.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Sources

Bibliography
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Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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