Project ID: SMR1004
Location: Blackham, East Sussex
Project date: 2013
Part of the GHQ Line of pillboxes runs through Withyham Parish, following the railway line from Uckfield and then the River Medway. The parish council invited us to clear vegetation from, and record a selection of them.
Description: Pillbox serial number A40 was designed to acommodate a 6-pounder gun covering a nearby bridge over the River Medway. In the event, a gun was never mounted here. Standing in the corner of a field, the site was heavily overgrown and subject to seasonal deep flooding.
Work involved cutting back vegetation and removing a carpet of ivy that had built up on the roof over 75 years. A trench was cut through an earth bank that had built up to open up the entrance. Excavation revealed the extent of the foundation slab. Cleaning of the embrasure exposed the year '1940' etched in the wet concrete.
The site completely flooded after work had been completed, with the water level nearly reaching the roof. Once the flood had receeded, some footprints in the foundation became discernable.