Ancient Monuments

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Oxwich Bay Coast Defence / Chain Home Low Radar Station

A Scheduled Monument in Penrice (Pen-rhys), Swansea (Abertawe)

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Latitude: 51.5436 / 51°32'37"N

Longitude: -4.1518 / 4°9'6"W

OS Eastings: 250879

OS Northings: 184941

OS Grid: SS508849

Mapcode National: GBR GT.3JYG

Mapcode Global: VH3N3.ZGGJ

Entry Name: Oxwich Bay Coast Defence / Chain Home Low Radar Station

Scheduled Date: 3 April 2008

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 1248

Cadw Legacy ID: GM602

Schedule Class: Defence

Category: Radar Station

Period: Post Medieval/Modern

County: Swansea (Abertawe)

Community: Penrice (Pen-rhys)

Traditional County: Glamorgan


The monument comprises the remains of a WWII Coast Defence / Chain Home Low (CD / CHL) radar station, an anti-invasion defence measure designed to guard against both low-flying enemy aircraft and shipping in the Bristol Channel. Known as Oxwich Bay (No. M128), the station was constructed by the Army in 1941-2, prior to the take over of the system by the RAF and then its final abandonment in 1943-4. The site consisted of three single-storey concrete buildings with flat roofs, set above the cliffs at Oxwich Point and overlooking the Bristol Channel to the south. The main site was accessed by a purpose built flight of concrete steps to the W. The operations building (Item A) consists of three unequal-sized rooms and retains the footings for the radar array gantry framework on the roof. The generator house (Item B) lies to the east, with the remains of a pair of temporary brick latrines between the two structures. A third building of uncertain function (Item C), possibly a switch gear house lies upslope to the north.

The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance and illustrate our knowledge of the development and use of radar. It is a rare surviving example of a group of WWII radar station buildings. The well-preserved structure may be expected to contain archaeological information in regard to building techniques and functional detail. The importance of the site is further enhanced by the group value it shares with two other surviving CD / CHL radar stations at Old Castle Head (scheduled as PE493) and Margam (scheduled as GM488).

The area scheduled comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.

Source: Cadw

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