Churches on Ranges

Discussion in 'RAC' started by GDav, Aug 7, 2006.

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  1. I was watching one of these archeology programmes tonight. They were on the Pembrokeshire coast. Then I remembered that there used to be a little church out of bounds on the ranges at Castlemartin. There's also one at Imber Village, also out of bounds, where they have a service every year in memory of all the villagers who were turfed out in 1942 to make way for the training area.

    Given the size of our ranges there are bound to be loads of interesting archeological finds, especially on places like Salisbury Plain.

    Anybody remember any more?
  2. There's one on the Bovington ranges, too, called Tyneham, IIRC.

    And don't forget the one on Hohne Ranges; the one in which you sit whilst the Gunners take pot shots at you. I prayed harder than I have ever done.......

  3. Tyneham a realistic - if short battle run on Scimitar. It is not difficult to imagine how it might be today, if re-occupied.
  4. Funny to imagine the communites cut off from their places of worship, even worse when you consider Imber - often called 'The Forgotten Village'.
  5. Training areas and Salisbury Plain in particular, are lousy with archaeological sites and interesting buildings. There are dozens of Scheduled Ancient Monuments (sites protected by law) on the Plain and I believe (although I can’t remember where I heard this) that even some of the modern sites there are protected. The survival of all this stuff is for pretty much the same reasons as all the wildlife we’re always told not to engage - because the army tends to use its huge tracts of land as ‘land’, rather than ploughing it or digging it up and building all over it as happens pretty much everywhere else.

    Tyneham on the Lulworth range has always been controversial, due to the way it’s residents were moved out having been promised the right to return by Churchill. After the war, they were effectively told to clear off by the MOD and frequent attempts were made to have it returned. Patrick Wright wrote a book on the subject called the Village that Died for England.

    I don’t know much about the church at Castlemartin, however, I do remember being told not to confuse it with the arc markers at night.

    Train Green should contain advice on not carrying out shovel recces in the middle of prehistoric barrows etc.

  6. I remember one in particular abandoned village at Thetford training area - quite sad being the soft bastard I am at times!!
  7. Imber's much the same as Tyneham although I do know there were other villages which were handed back.

    There was much to interest the intellectually hungry on a lot of our ranges - unfortunately I think a lot of us were too wrapped up in other things then to care. For example: on a grid search in Northern Ireland one day we came upon a Quaker graveyard near the old MQ's in Craigavon. It was overgrown and vandalised and I remember thinking it was such a shame that all those people had been thrown off their land to build estates which were never built. Imagine my surprise last month when I came across an article which said the graveyard had been rediscovered, cleaned up and now preserved as a heritage site?
  8. During the building of DARA's white elephant at St Athans there were many Roman and Prehistoric finds made, (not just the neanderthals in the barrack blocks) most were catalogued before having thousands of tons of substandard concrete poured over them. Whilst RAF Honington was being built a gibbet cage plus occupant was found where the foundations of one of the hangars was to go, spooky doing lock up and roving patrol.
  9. AlienFTM

    AlienFTM LE Book Reviewer

    Dunno about churches, but our squadron was the first to go down Tyneham battle run in a long. long time in 1977. As Sqn Ldr's driver, I had a posse of IGs and people in the back of my newly-open-topped Landrover as we followed troop after troop down the battle run.

    OC could not stop himself from jumping out every time we stopped and collecting mushrooms, undisturbed in God knows how long, the size of dinner plates.

    It never occurred to him that there was a posse of IGs jumping on the bus and off the bus.

    Diced mushroom by the time we got back to camp, for me to clear up.

    I took gazillions of photos during my time, largely because my mother complained that I didn't write daily while we were in Omagh. Thereafter I sent photos home by the score and wrote Air Mail flimsy by the dozen.

    They all went diffy when my brother cleared her house after she died. Bastid.

    All I have now, out of all those photos, is a reel of film of 3 Tp (IIRC) shot that day on Tyneham battle run.