Royal Observer Corps, (ROC), Monitoring Posts


During our recent holiday we made a visit to Newhaven Fort.

One of the many exhibits there was a recreation of a ROC Monitoring Post. These were underground bunkers that were designed to be used in the event of a nuclear war to determine the direction and power of a blast, and the radiation levels. This information would then be fed back to a control room which would work out where all the bombs had gone off, and how big they were. The amazing thing was that a lot of these posts were manned up until 1991, and there was an incredible 1600 of them spread across the country.

What the exhibit didn't say was what had happened to them all since 1991. Could all of these 1600 relics from the Cold War have been destroyed? After some research I discovered that a large percentage of them still exist, and that there were many not too far from where we live. Actually, the nearest one is only about a mile away, but being within RAF Northolt it was inaccessible.

Based on my research I picked three likely targets in Oxfordshire.

 On Saturday 30th September, Max, Ben and I set off to see if we could find them.

Watlington ROC Monitoring Post