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HER Number:MDV78960
Name:The Leach Building, HMS Cambridge, Wembury Point


Range Centre for Medium Range School at HMS Cambridge, built in 1985 and demolished in the early 21st century.


Grid Reference:SX 498 484
Map Sheet:SX44NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishWembury
DistrictSouth Hams
Ecclesiastical ParishWEMBURY

Protected Status

  • SHINE: Military earthworks, buildings and structural remains at HMS Cambridge, Wembury Point

Other References/Statuses

  • SHINE Candidate (Yes)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • MILITARY BUILDING (Built, XX - 1985 AD to 1985 AD (Between))

Full description

English Heritage, HMS Cambridge (Report - Assessment). SDV347539.

Description and assessment of the Leach Building given. The particular significance of the building lies in its structural integrity and the survival of original internal configuration, plant and fittings; its location, original purpose and single function; the structure is representative of a particular phase of the Cold War; centrality to the role of gunnery training in the royal Navy during the last phase of the Cole War; it is closely linked to the first fully remotely controlled 'Main Armament' gun in the Royal Navy; the building is unique, the only one buildt to this design associated with a particular weapons system. The building is to be recommended for retention.

Unknown, HMS Cambridge (Aerial Photograph). SDV347540.

GetMapping, 1999 - 2000, Millennium Map 1999-2000 Getmapping (Aerial Photograph). SDV321648.

Department for Culture, Media and Sport, 2005, Gunnery Range Control Building (AKA The Leach Building), Former HMS Cambridge Site, Wembury, Plymouth, Devon (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV360469.

Notification dated 13th July 2005 of granting of Certificate of Immunity from listing for five years. Having considered the merits of the building it has been concluded that it is not of sufficient architectural or historic interest to be listed.

Berry, N., 2006, Archaeological and Historic Landscape Survey of Wembury Point and The Mewstone, Wembury, Devon, 2, 14 (Report - Survey). SDV345992.

Building to house a new Range Centre for the Medium Range School at HMS Cambridge, completed in 1985 and named after Admiral Leach (victor of the Falklands War). Designed to have the traditional dual role for Wembury (gunnery training and the defence of Plymouth), but updated for the Cold War. The Range Control Centre at the south-east corner of the two storey building has spectacular projecting wrap-around armour plated windows overlooking two 4.5 inch gun platforms that are controlled and fired from within the building and via manned containers on the roof. Its other role was as a 'semi-hardened command centre' for the Royal Navy in the event of a nuclear attack on Plymouth. It was therefore 'fitted for, but not necessarily with', all the air filtering plant, airlocks, decontamination and protected communication facilities. The building was initially retained when the majority of buildings on the Firing Site were demolished early in the 21st century, but following purchase by the National Trust it was not considered suitable for conservation or alternative use, and is due to be demolished shortly. Other details: Figures 2-3, 20-21.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV321648Aerial Photograph: GetMapping. 1999 - 2000. Millennium Map 1999-2000 Getmapping. Millennium Map. Photograph (Digital).
SDV345992Report - Survey: Berry, N.. 2006. Archaeological and Historic Landscape Survey of Wembury Point and The Mewstone, Wembury, Devon. National Trust Report. A4 Stapled + Digital. 2, 14.
SDV347539Report - Assessment: English Heritage. HMS Cambridge. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV347540Aerial Photograph: Unknown. HMS Cambridge. Photocopy + Digital.
SDV360469List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Department for Culture, Media and Sport. 2005. Gunnery Range Control Building (AKA The Leach Building), Former HMS Cambridge Site, Wembury, Plymouth, Devon. Certificate of Immunity. Not applicable.

Associated Monuments

MDV55112Part of: Gunnery Training Area, HMS Cambridge (Monument)
MDV50865Related to: HMS Cambridge, Wembury Point (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4959 - Survey of Wembury Point and the Mewstone, Wembury, Devon

Date Last Edited:Sep 13 2018 12:35PM