WWII "decoy city" near Torrance

Moderators: John, Sharon, Fossil, Lucky Poet, crusty_bint, Jazza, dazza

WWII "decoy city" near Torrance

Postby Ronnie » Mon Apr 12, 2004 8:42 pm

Anybody know anything about this? It would make a neat trip if there was any evidence still on the ground.

A letter appeared in the Herald in 1988, with some facts about the "decoy city" that was "set up in the heather" between Torrance and Balmore to distract enemy aircraft from Glasgow. Electric light were used to create a simulacrum of Glasgow, from the blaze of blast furnaces right down to the sparks from tramcars. The site was staffed by a telephonist and an inspection/ repair team of four, and was in operation from 1941 to 1945.

Anyone got the large-scale OS maps for this area? There's nothing particular on the Landranger.
upupdowndownleftrightleftrightbastart
User avatar
Ronnie
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 1984
Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2004 11:22 pm
Location: Glasgow

Postby Pgcc93 » Mon Apr 12, 2004 9:24 pm

You've got my interest on this Ronnie, do you stillhave the Herald article? I would love to read it. Perhaps Turbozutek could be of assistance in pulling the archive if poss. :D

The only place I've heard of being used as a decoy site for Glasgow during WW2 was Auchenreoch in the Kilpatrick hills. This is one of many that were built around many cities in Britain to divert the attention of the axis bombing raids away from strategic areas. They were know by several code names eg: QF sites, Fake Fires or Starfish sites. They were contructed from barrels of fuel oil and pyrotechnics placed over a large area of open ground to resemble citys/targets etc. Set off from a command bunker soon after pathfinder bombers passed over dropping incenderies or flares, this cunningly diverted the following wave of German raiders away from the Clydeside. I've yet to visit the above site but I have learned that it has at least several craters within a 800 yard area of the bunker. So they must have had some value!! not least the accuracy of the Luftwaffe.

Had a look at the OS map for the area you mention, not much going for it without a better locus.
User avatar
Pgcc93
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 4107
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2003 8:12 pm
Location: Hotel Du Vin

Postby cumbo » Tue Apr 13, 2004 9:18 am

I thought Clydebank did a rather good job as a decoy for Glasgow.......Sorry
I have heard about this. I know they did this arround Liverpool and Coventry,Street lighting in the country side around the city putting the German aircraft off the scent.Lets face it not much use,moon light on the Clyde dead givaway!!
Sounds an Intresting day out,count me In
User avatar
cumbo
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 1722
Joined: Sun Jan 25, 2004 1:46 pm
Location: Location:Location

Postby Ronnie » Tue Apr 13, 2004 9:32 am

Yes, Pgcc93, I still have the cutting. It's a letter, and there's not hugely much more in it than I've posted. I suppose you'll be expecting me to scan it now ...
upupdowndownleftrightleftrightbastart
User avatar
Ronnie
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 1984
Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2004 11:22 pm
Location: Glasgow

Postby caine » Tue Apr 13, 2004 12:46 pm

i have a lot of friends and familyfrom torrance and kirky, so i'll ask them if they remember it, some of them are quite old....... :wink:
caine
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Tue Oct 14, 2003 10:52 am

Postby JayKay » Tue Apr 13, 2004 5:49 pm

ISTR remember reading of a similar thing in the Cumbernauld area, then obviously mostly farmland.

BTW In the Torrance/Balmore area is the old RAF Barrage Balloon station RAF Bishopbriggs. It's still mostly there although now mostly used as HMP Low Moss. Other parts are used as a Golf range and playing fields.

One part of it is disused though, the part that was used as a DSS resettlement unit until it closed in the 90's.
User avatar
JayKay
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 1440
Joined: Wed Dec 18, 2002 4:29 pm

Postby Pgcc93 » Tue Apr 13, 2004 8:50 pm

Ronnie wrote:Yes, Pgcc93, I still have the cutting. It's a letter, and there's not hugely much more in it than I've posted. I suppose you'll be expecting me to scan it now ...


It's still not arrived :x ::):
User avatar
Pgcc93
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 4107
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2003 8:12 pm
Location: Hotel Du Vin

Postby DVF » Wed Apr 21, 2004 11:29 am

I vaguely remember a story about a fake city around Dumbarton or Greenock (very vaguely). It was up on a hill and did a good job, got bombed during the night, rebuilt during the day, until one night when a stray bomb landed on a fuel dump or whisky distillery. It lit up the real town all night, took them a week to put the fire out or something.

On another more modern note, I was told once (in the pub, pished as a fart), that if the distillery, bond, whatever, in Drumchapel, behind and around the West end retail park (mega B&Q etc.), if it were to blow up, it would wipe out everything in a 10 mile radius. :!:
User avatar
DVF
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 329
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2004 5:35 pm
Location: Clydebank

Bond store explosion.

Postby gordonjcp » Thu Apr 22, 2004 7:20 am

Nope, it wouldn't wipe out everything in a ten mile radius. There *would* be a very big fire, possibly with a few small explosions caused by casks bursting. But it's not storing explosives. There was a bonded store in the US that went on fire a few months ago, can't remember much about it.
User avatar
gordonjcp
First Stripe
First Stripe
 
Posts: 64
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2003 2:40 pm
Location: Kirkintilloch

Postby Apollo » Fri Sep 29, 2006 12:14 am

Regarding the earlier mention of RAF Bishobriggs and the Balloon Station, I've been asked if anyone has any further information:

No 18 Balloon Centre was built 1939 and it later became RAF Bishopbriggs. Is there anyone about coud help me with the fact that next to that station was a Flying Control Buiding, it was later used as a club.

I couldn't dig up anything in the usual sources, other than the Low Moss reference given above, but it didn't give the station number (though I assume it to be No 18 ), so wondered of anyone had more local knowledge.
Last edited by Apollo on Thu Oct 05, 2006 9:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Apollo
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 2284
Joined: Sun May 09, 2004 10:26 pm
Location: Glasgow

Postby HollowHorn » Fri Sep 29, 2006 8:19 am

Welcome back, Apollo.
User avatar
HollowHorn
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 8925
Joined: Mon May 23, 2005 9:59 pm
Location: Paisley

Postby JayKay » Fri Sep 29, 2006 9:40 am

No 18 Balloon Centre was built 1939 and it later became RAF Bishopbriggs. Is there anyone about coud help me with the fact that next to that station was a Flying Control Buiding, it was later used as a club.

One of the fields near the former RAF Bishopbriggs is used by St Aloysius school as its sports grounds. There is a small two-storey building there that looks more than a little like a control tower.
User avatar
JayKay
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 1440
Joined: Wed Dec 18, 2002 4:29 pm

Postby Socceroo » Fri Sep 29, 2006 10:50 am

There was a decoy site also up at Loch Thom? reservoir above Greenock there is some deep craters along the cut up there also well worth a visit for anyone who has not been.

I've got some photos somewhere, if i find them i'll post them up later.
User avatar
Socceroo
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 1367
Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2005 8:51 pm
Location: Mount Flo, Glasgow

Postby marginalwalker » Fri Sep 29, 2006 5:52 pm

JayKay wrote:No 18 Balloon Centre was built 1939 and it later became RAF Bishopbriggs. Is there anyone about coud help me with the fact that next to that station was a Flying Control Buiding, it was later used as a club.

One of the fields near the former RAF Bishopbriggs is used by St Aloysius school as its sports grounds. There is a small two-storey building there that looks more than a little like a control tower.


I was always told that Loretto Playing Fields used by St Mungo's Academy was an airfield..
marginalwalker
Second Stripe
Second Stripe
 
Posts: 337
Joined: Thu Oct 20, 2005 4:08 pm

Postby Schiehallion » Fri Sep 29, 2006 6:16 pm

When the Germans heard that Churchill had authorised the development of an 80 metre long, 10 metre thick rolled up newspaper to swat the German cities with, they immediately started setting up decoy earwigs in the countryside.

http://tinyurl.com/e79a7
User avatar
Schiehallion
Third Stripe
Third Stripe
 
Posts: 1625
Joined: Sat Mar 20, 2004 9:32 pm

Next

Return to Glasgow Chat (Coffee Lounge)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Exabot [Bot], Google [Bot], Yahoo [Bot] and 9 guests