Inverbervie CEW Radar Station
Inverbervie CEW Radar Station, lies approximately halfway between Montrose and Stonehaven, Angus.
Inverbervie is a Royal Burgh, a status granted by King David II of Scotland in 1341 when he made landfall there on his return from exile in France, with his wife Queen Margaret (Drummond). The event is commemorated in the name of the nearby cliffs known as Craig David, the headland as Bervie Brow, and the shore below as King's Step. Legend tells of events on June 2, 1341, and a storm in the North Sea. Sailing from France to Scotland, the vessel carrying King David II and Queen Margaret was driven on to the rocks at Inverbervie, where the King and Queen scrambled ashore and were able to shelter under a cliff, which came to be known as Craig David.
In 1953, a Centimetric Early Warning (CEW) radar station was built on the headland. Five radar systems were installed to provided coverage of the North Sea and north coast of Scotland, and give advance warning of the approach of any potential threats.
In 1968, the station was taken over by the US Navy, and operated in conjunction with the major monitoring station based at RAF Edzell, a little over 10 miles to the west. Edzell closed in 1977, followed by Inverbervie in 1978.
The facility lay unused for the next six years, until 1984, when it was designated Reserve Headquarters for Group Headquarters and Sector Control at Craigiebarns, Dundee.
The station was finally closed and withdrawn from service in 1993.
The bunker lay unused for a further six years, purchased by the current (2007) owner in 1999.
Information recorded by RCAHMS identifies aerial photographs of the location dating from 1954, 1957, 1967, and 1973, all of which show a small T shaped building on the headland, set within an area if approximately 40 m x 20 m, assumed to be the roof of an underground structure, with related structures nearby. The underground structure is further described as lying beneath what appears to be a cottage, but is actually part of the structure's domestic infrastructure, such as water tanks. The entrance to the underground facility is reported to be protected by a blast door, with the interior provided with artificial lighting and ventilation. While being locally rumoured to date from the 1930s, the installation is recorded as having been built in 1952, with further work carried out in the 1960s when the mezzanine floor was added.
For Sale in 2010
Site visit by Subterranea Britannica
We are grateful to our friends at Subterranea Britannica for permission to reproduce the following details.
Site Name: Inverbervie CEW R1 ROTOR Radar Station
The Inverbervie CEW (Centimetric Early Warning) Radar Station was built in 1952 and was designated an R1. It consisted of a single storey bunker accessed from the standard design guardhouse/bungalow built of local stone. It had three type 13 and 2 type14 radar systems, one mounted on an overhead gantry.
In the 1960's the site was taken over by the US Navy working in conjunction with nearby RAF Edzel where the US Navy's security group had their Oceanographic Monitoring Station monitoring the North Sea and the coast around the north of Britain. During this period the bunker was substantially modified and converted into two levels. This was done by removing the original floor and lowering the height of the rooms, in this way it was possible to squeeze a second level into the same space without altering the structure of the bunker. The US Navy moved out in 1978 and the bunker remained empty for six year until 1984 when it was taken over as the Armed Forces Standby HQ to Craigie Hall. The bunker was finally closed in 1993 and purchased by the current owner in 1999. Despite the US modification the plant room remains in original condition and is the best surviving example of its type (CEW / R1). It would appear that the American's did not use the AC Plant, utilising only a small number of the original fans to provide ventilation.
Most of the other rooms have been completely altered, there is a new kitchen and new toilets with one very strange anomaly; both the male and female toilets have a urinal. On the opposite side of the main spine corridor is the new two storey control room with an open balcony overlooking the 'well' and room windows (on both floors) which also overlook the 'well' on the other side.
Two manual switchboards are still in place in one room, very similar those that were noted at another AFHQ at Henley. There are numerous other items of control equipment remaining which will need further research and investigation to interpret. The bunker is a little damp in places but is generally in excellent condition and is lit throughout. On the surface the 5 radar plinths remain intact the most interesting being the Type 14 where a low gantry straddled the small control building which still contains its original 50 c/s and 500 c/s switching racks and cable termination blocks. Four massive concrete blocks that supported the gantry stand around the building. The mound over the bunker is fairly unobtrusive set in a low valley on top of the hill, at the far end of it is the small emergency exit blockhouse.
The site is private and very secure, with two mean and hungry Alsatian dogs patrolling the grounds (24/7). The owner has made it clear he wouldn't welcome visitors.
2 ⇑ For sale: Dr No's Scottish bunker complex • The Register Retrieved July 12, 2010.
- The Courier - For sale: Cold War bunker. Would suit megalomaniac keen to take over world Retrieved July 12, 2010.
You may add a comment or offer further details which may be included in the page above.
Commenting has been disabled thanks to the attention of scum known as spam commenters
Recent Page Trail: