Small Arms Ammunition Store Abbotsinch
A building believed to have been a World War II small arms ammunition store, complete with baffle wall, has been identified to the east of the junction of the A726 Barnsford Road and Walkinshaw Road, which runs adjacent to the northwest perimeter fence of Glasgow Airport.
During the war, this building would have been within the perimeter of Abbotsinch Airfield, and close to the pillboxes located towards the northwest corner of the field.
The building was identified during a site visit in April 2008, and is a windowless single storey structure built on a concrete base, with brick walls and a concrete roof. Internally, the structure is divided into three rooms, a single room occupies the eastern half, with the remaining space to the west shared equally between two smaller rooms. The large room has a single door set in the centre of the east wall, while the smaller rooms each have their single door placed in the corner, such that they lie beside on another and in the centre of the west wall. Structurally, the north and south walls, together with the centre dividing wall, were noted to be of full brick construction (stretchers and headers visible on each side), while the walls carrying the doors, and the smaller dividing wall, were of half brick. The internal walls are unbroken, with no doorways or apertures between any of the interior spaces. All rooms have vents fitted at roof and floor level, in the corners adjacent to the longer dividing wall, which also indicates its thickness. The smaller rooms each have two further vents in their western wall, so that each room has four vents.
Although partially stripped, an earthing strap was noted to have been installed a few inches below the perimeter of the flat roof, with straps leading to ground down the centres of the north and south walls.
To the west of the building and a few feet away from the doorways, is a heavy W-shaped baffle wall, built to a thickness of two full bricks, and of the same height as the building.
The remains of a tarmac access road lead north from Walkinshaw Road, with an adjacent pile of concrete fence posts which appear to have been lying undisturbed for some years.
A small steel bridge crosses a drainage channel or ditch a few yard to the northeast. Believed to be part of the airfield, this leads to a roughly triangular area of ground, evident in the various aerial views of the site, which have been suggested as being the remains of earthworks that may have formed a bomb store.
A further concrete hut base was found in the ground nearby, indicating at least one further building to the south of this store.
The building is currently (2008) unrecorded (by RCAHMS), so there are no records immediately available. Following a number of online queries placed in discussion groups concerned with buildings from the time, the general concencus was that the building was a store for small arms and associated ammunition, and could also have been used to store light anti-aircraft shells.
Ten pillboxes have been identified around the perimeter of Abbotsinch Airfield, which was established by the RAF in 1933, and later transferred to the Royal Navy in 1943, becoming HMS Sanderling. The pillboxes positions have been added to the map below.
Abbotsinch Airfield pillboxes:
- Pillbox 1
- Pillbox 2
- Pillbox 3
- Pillbox 4
- Pillbox 5
- Pillbox 6
- Pillbox 7
- Pillbox 8
- Pillbox 9
- Pillbox 10
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