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Wednesday, 4 September 2019

Operation Biting - The Bruneval Raid 27th February 1942 Part Two

A couple of week's ago I had the chance to visit the site of the Bruneval Raid once again.

Lighthouse at Cap d'Antifer
Whilst there I took the opportunity to visit the Freya site at Cap d'Antifer, that wasn't part of the scope of the raid, but was just north of where the attack took place.

The concrete base for the Freya Radar. A similar construction is easily accessible on the high ground overlooking Arromanches and I believe has been restored with a replica aerial.
From the Rue de Major Frost in the village of La Presbytere, take the Rue de Phare towards the Lighthouse at Cap d’Antifer.

Personnel Bunker
Visit the lighthouse and the German Naval Radar buildings around it before heading back the way you came.

At sharp left hand bend, park your car by the gate. Here you’ll see immediately a good example of a Tobruk bunker. Now walk towards the cliffs and you can climb up onto the first flak position you come to.

Nice Tobruk emplacement....popular with the locals!
From here you can view the other bunkers, the Freya base (in the distance) and the old entrance blocks that were either side of the flak position’s gate!

Flak Bunker
These two concrete blocks are the former entrance gate posts to the flak position. The way in was blocked by slotting in a steel pole between the blocks. Another flak position is in the distance
I also (rather foolishly as it was a very hot day) decided to climb up the path to the concrete bunker at the site of "REDOUBT". 

"REDOUBT" looking across to the modern day memorial
The bunker is likely to be a later addition, but this was the path down which the raiders evacuated to the beach. 

If you ever go there be aware that it is very steep, not very wide and very challenging!

                 View from "REDOUBT" across to the drop zone where two sections accidentally were dropped
Hotel Beauminet in Saint-Jouin-Bruneval (just up the road from the beach), that housed the Luftwaffe personnel who manned the radar and which was visited by two members of the French resistance to gain intelligence before the raid. The mission was a total success, they even found out that the mine fields at the beach were dummies!
I hope you find the photographs of the areas I visited interesting, and perhaps inspire you to take a look yourselves one day!

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