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Historic England Research Records

Chain Home Low Station Chl03a

Hob Uid: 1477107
Location :
Kent
Thanet
Non Civil Parish
Grid Ref : TR3830071600
Summary : The site of a Royal Air Force Chain Home Low radar station at Foreness Point, which was established by January 1940. The station provided early warning for low-flying enemy aircraft approaching the Thames estuary and London. It formed part of the radar warning network for the key 11 Group RAF Fighter Command during the Battle of Britain. As such it was attacked by the Luftwaffe bombers during all-out German air assaults on 15th August 1940. Chain Home Low sites typically comprised two gantries carrying the transmitter and receiver aerial arrays, a transmitter and receiver hut, a standby set house for the reserve power, and a general purposes hut. However this site was more substantial including a lage underground structure and an above ground entrance element designed to appear to be a domestic house, along with a 200 foot (circa 61 metres) high tower. Aerial photography from 1995 shows that the station had been removed and the site was a building development. A second station at Foreness, site CHL03B, was located at TR 383 714.
More information : A Chain Home Low station located at Foreness (TR 383 716), called site CHL03A. It was established by 05-JAN-1940. Chain Home Low (CHL) stations provided early warning of approaching low-flying enemy aircraft during the Second World War. CHL stations used technology originally used by the Army to plot shipping for coastal batteries. In 1940 the Royal Air Force established the series of Chain Home Low stations to supplement the existing Chain Home stations as they were capable of detecting lower-flying aircraft. CHL sites typically comprised two gantries carrying the transmitter and receiver aerial arrays, a transmitter and receiver hut, a standby set house for the reserve power, and a general purposes hut. Chain Home Low Station CHL03B was located at Foreness at TR 383 714. (1)

Chain Home Low station at Foreness. Aerial photography from 1995 shows that the station has been removed and the site was a building development. (2)

Aerial photograph referenced in source 2. (3)

RAF Foreness: the station provided early warning for low-flying enemy aircraft approaching the Thames estuary and London. It formed part of the radar warning network for the key 11 Group RAF Fighter Command during the Battle of Britain. (4)

Foreness Chain Home Low station, along with similar stations at Hawkinge, Maidstone, Dover and Rye were attacked by small units of German bombers with fighter escorts on 15th August 1940. This was part of the major Luftwaffe assaults launched from the 13th August, codenamed "Adlertag" or "Eagle Day" to the 15th. (5)

An online local Kent history discussion thread features a scan of a 1:250 scale plan of the Foreness "CHEL-B" site. The date on the scanned plan is nearly illegible but may be from 1960. The key notes the presence of a a "type R2" underground building, with a guarroom and entrance area; it also notes a 200 foot tower. (6)

A former archivist for Thanet District Council notes that wartime plans for this site were deposited in the local council archives. The former archivist noted that the site included a large underground structure and an above ground building disguised a domestic house. There is also thought to be a map of the impact of Luftwaffe bombing. (7)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Twentieth century fortifications in England, volume 7. Acoustics and radar: England's early warning systems 1915-1945
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Page(s) : 72,164
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Source Number : 2
Source : Twentieth century military recording project: World War Two radar stations
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Page(s) : 89
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Source Number : 3
Source : Oblique aerial photograph reference number
Source details : NMR/15367/04 30-AUG-1995
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Source Number : 4
Source : World Wide Web page
Source details : Royal Air Force, Crown copyright, 2005. 'Battle of Britain: 11 Group' <> [Accessed 14-JUL-2010]
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Source Number : 5
Source : Bravery, Sacrifice, Freedom: Battle of Britain 70th Anniversary 1940-2010
Source details :
Page(s) : 104
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Source Number : 6
Source : World Wide Web page
Source details : Kent History Forum 2011 'Kent History Forum: Radar Station Kingsgate thread' <> [Accessed 20-JAN-2012]
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Source Number : 7
Source : Oral information, correspondence (not archived) or staff comments
Source details : PastScape comments log 20-JAN-2012
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Second World War
Display Date : Established by 1940
Monument End Date : 1945
Monument Start Date : 1939
Monument Type : Radar Station, Chain Home Station
Evidence : Documentary Evidence

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : TR 37 SE 379
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 1487788
Relationship type : General association

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : Primary, LANDSCAPES OF WAR RECORDING PROJECT
Activity type : MEASURED SURVEY
Start Date : 2008-01-01
End Date : 2009-12-31