Site Event/Activity record ESF19985 - Martlesham Heath WWII Structures Building Recording

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Location MRM 140 World War II Defences on The Swale, Brightwell Heath, Ipswich
Grid reference Centred TM 2497 4458 (375m by 258m)
Map sheet TM24SW



Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service


Not recorded.



A building recording was undertaken of three structures dating from the inter-war period to WWII as required in a Brief and Specification by Edward Martin of Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service Conservation Team. These buildings formed part of RAF Martlesham, which from 1917 housed the Armament Experimental Flight and the Aircraft Testing Flight, later to become the Aeroplane and Armament Experimental Establishment. The airfield also became actively involved in combat operations during WWII. A Type-22 pillbox (constructed on top of a Bronze Age barrow mound and surrounded by revetment walls and a gun emplacement), a brick hut which possibly functioned as a stand-by set house for the HFDF tower, and an octagonal wall for a High Frequency Direction Finding (HFDF) tower were recorded. The latter building is a brick curtain wall, functioning as a protective structure for a wooden HFDF beacon tower, from which only the concrete and metal foundations still remain. The three buildings were in various states of repair, although the Type-22 pillbox was the best preserved and still contained graffiti from WWII, as well as later graffiti thought to be contemporary with the nearby housing estate. The structures would have functioned within part of the defensive network associated with the airfield, and the HFDF structure and the brick hut possibly played a part in the installation's experimental work too. Project status: Complete Yes, Validated Yes Previous/Future Work: Previous Yes, Future Yes Associated Identifiers: HER event no. MRM 140 Sitecode MRM 140 Contracting Unit No. 2012/002 Planning Application No. C/10/1441 NMR No. 1566753 Project Type: Building Recording Methods and Techniques: '''Annotated Sketch''', '''Measured Survey''', '''Photographic Survey''', '''Survey/Recording Of Fabric/Structure''' Reason for Investigation: Direction from Local Planning Authority - PPS Current Land use: Other 3 - Built over Monument Type(s)/Period(s): PILLBOX Modern, HIGH FREQUENCY DIRECTION FINDING TOWER Modern, STAND BY SET HOUSE Modern Artefact Type(s)/Period(s): NONE None PROJECT LOCATION Area 67.00 Square metres Grid References: TM2495544592 Point, TM2503444514 Point, TM2513544513 Point PROJECT CREATOR(S) Brief originator: Local Authority Archaeologist and/or Planning Authority/advisory body Design originator: Edward Martin Director/Manager: Stuart Boulter Supervisor: Rob Brooks DIGITAL ARCHIVE Recipient: Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service ID: MRM 140 Contents: 'Survey', 'other' Media: 'Images raster / digital photography', 'Survey', 'Text' PAPER ARCHIVE Recipient: Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service ID: MRM 140 Contents: 'Survey', 'other' Media: 'Correspondence', 'Report' BIBLIOGRAPHY Publication Type: Grey literature (unpublished document/manuscript) Title: RAF Martlesham Heath structures, Martlesham, MRM 140, Archaeological Building Record Author(s)/Editor(s): Brooks, R. Other Bibliographic Details: SCCAS Report No. 2012/002 Date: 2012 Issuer/Publisher: SCCAS Place of Issue or Publication: Bury St Edmunds Description: A4, comb bound, white cover, in colour, with three appendices (also available as a pdf)

Sources/Archives (2)

  • --- Unpublished document: Muldowney, M.. 2008. Building Recording Report, World War II defences on the Swale, Brightwell Heath, Ipswich MRM 140.
  • --- Unpublished document: Brooks, R. 2012. Martlesham Heath WWII structures, Martlesham, MRM 140.

Related Monuments/Buildings (4)

  • Eight Round Barrows on Martlesham Heath; Brightwell Heath; Black Hill (Monument)
  • Generator hut, Adastral Park, Martlesham (Building)
  • HFDF (High Frequency Direction Finder) tower, Adastral Park, Martlesham (Monument)
  • World War II defences on the Swale (Mod) (Monument)

Record last edited

Feb 26 2013 9:01AM

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