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St Dennis and Goss Moor - Local Defences

by cornwallcsv

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Archive List > Childhood and Evacuation

Contributed by 
People in story: 
Kenneth H Rickard
Location of story: 
St Dennis and Goss Moor, Cornwall
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
12 December 2005

This story has been added by CSV volunteer Linda Clark on behalf of the author Kenneth H Rickard. It is an extract from a book he wrote called 'St Dennis and Goss Moor', published by Halsgrove of Tiverton. They fully understand the site's terms and conditions.

Sand and blocks produced from the Goss Moor sand works were used on the many Second World War projects, two of which were anti-aircraft pillars and barricades for roads. In 1940 anti-aircraft pillars were built on the A30 grass verges on Goss Moor between the iron girder railway bridge and the road bridge at St Dennis Junction. Each pillar was made from concrete blocks and a concrete post and probably stood about 15ft high. These pillars were meant to discourage any attempt by Germany to land troop-carrying aircraft on the straight and open road. When the threat of any invasion diminished in 1944 the pillars were demolished. A concrete pillbox was built in 1940 on Goss Moor by the access road to the sand and block works. It is not clear why this site was selected, apart from the fact that it did command good views of the A30(this area was not overgrown in those days). In any emergency it would have been manned by the Home Guard. The pillbox was destroyed by dynamite after the war.
The road barricades were very large concrete sections probably weighing about four to five tons each and were positioned at strategic positions along the A30, including Fraddon Hill, Indian Queens and St Columb Road, plus all road junctions. They were positioned so that with a slight adjustment they could block the road in the event of an enemy invasion, thus impeding any transport progress. The disadvantage was that these sites were a nuisance to local traffic, especially buses which had difficulty in negotiating the chicane-type road layout. When the threat of an invasion diminished these barricades were also removed.

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