Welcome to this blog which is intended to accompany a website on how Suffolk was defended during the Second War. The blog will describe my trips out and about looking for the remains of the Second War defences while the Website will concentrate on putting these into context.

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Sunday, 8 May 2011

Eastern Command Line: lavenham - Part 2

There are two interesting Type 22 pillboxes in the lavenham area, close to each other but quite different in character.  One is a first line position pillbox on the Command Line while the other is on the rear line.  All the other pillboxes in this area are of the new designs for the Command Line (C.R.E 1116, 1113 and 1096). Neither of these two seem to be on the list of the Command Line pillboxes.

The one on the first line position would appear to have embrasures designed to take a Turnbull mount (a cradle designed to hold a light machine gun), of which two  have been fitted. It is bullet proof, with an internal anti-ricochet wall and a low level protected entrance, typical on this part of the Command Line. The two machine guns in these mounts would have covered a crossing over the Command line. The remaining embrasures have metal plates fitted to make them bullet proof. As the Turnbull mount was not introduced until late 1940, could this pillbox  have been built after the initial work on the Command Line was completed?  Although why it is not shell proof like other first line pillboxes is a mystery.

The second pillbox is also bullet proof and again has a low level protected entrance. However the embrasures are much narrower (with four 'steps' and a metal plate for reinforcement on the last 'step'). It was presumably thought less likely that a stray bullet could enter through these embrasures as there is no internal anti-ricochet wall.

Images 1-5: Type 22 on first line position with Turnbull mounts fitted in two embrasures.
Images 6-7: Type 22 on rear line position with narrow embrasures and no internal anti-ricochet wall.

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