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HER Number:MDV80437
Name:Anti-tank Gun Emplacement South-east of Axe Bridge, Colyton

Summary

Anti-tank gun emplacement sited to cover the approach to Axe Bridge. It is not clearly visible on any of the available 1940s aerial photographs, but the remains seem to have been exposed by the removal of a hedgebank and it seemed to survive relatively intact in 2006 and on a site visit in 2014. Part of the Second World War Taunton Stop Line constructed in 1940. The gun was removed to the coast in September 1940.

Location

Grid Reference:SY 260 925
Map Sheet:SY29SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishColyton
DistrictEast Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishCOLYTON

Protected Status

  • SHINE: Pill boxes, anti-tank ditches and obstacles, World War II at the Boshill Cross Stong Point of the Taunton Stop Line, a defensive crossing on the River Axe

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: 1417488
  • SHINE Candidate (Yes)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • GUN EMPLACEMENT (Constructed, World War II - 1940 AD to 1940 AD)

Full description

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/106G/UK/1412, RAF/106G/UK/1412 RP 3357-3358 13-APR-1946 (Aerial Photograph). SDV352504.

A pale mark is visible within a hedgebank.


Wills, H., 1985, Pillboxes. A Study of UK Defences 1940, 74 (Monograph). SDV336210.

Rectangular pillbox of mixed construction facing south-west.


Hellis, J., 1990, List of Defensive Sites (Un-published). SDV99101.

Site visit circa 1988. Anti-tank emplacement, 6 pounder Nordenfeldt type.


Hellis, J., 1992, The Taunton Stop Line, 44-45 (Article in Serial). SDV130111.

Emplacement for 6 pounder Hotchkiss gun beside River Axe. Only brick faced emplacement on Taunton Stop Line. Gun removed to coast in September 1940. Other details: Photo.


Horner, B., 1992, Untitled Source (Personal Comment). SDV347569.

Site visit 6th February 1992. Site clearly visible just south of road on east bank of River Axe. Popular with sheep. Appears in good condition.


Horner, W., 1994, East Devon Pillboxes (Personal Comment). SDV356839.

Site visit 16th March 1994. Faces west covering approaches to Axe Bridge as well as field to south of bridge.


Horner, W., 1994, The Taunton Stop Line (Un-published). SDV358963.

Another of the few anti-tank gun emplacements, an open-fronted brick and concrete construction with a wide field of fire, is sited to the south, covering the bridge and approaching road from Colyford.


Cochrane, J. N., 1996, Pillbox (Gun Emplacement) (Worksheet). SDV357213.

Circular type pillbox (gun emplacement) with open front for field guns. Prominent feature, in a field 100 metres south of A3052, visible from road.


Exeter Archaeology, 2003-2004, East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Archaeological Survey, Site No. 1216 (Archive - Survey). SDV351568.

Anti-tank gun emplacement on east bank of Axe. Part of Taunton Stop Line.


Next Perspectives, 2006, Pan Government Agreement, Next Perspectives PGA Imagery SY2692 17-JUN-2006 (Aerial Photograph). SDV352652.

A small eliptical structure is visible.


THE DEVONSHIRE ASSOCIATION, 2008, WWII Pill Boxes in the Axe Valley, 3-4, 15, 16 (Report - Survey). SDV347565.

A 6-pounder anti-tank gun emplacement SA/T 603 sited to cover the approach to the bridge across the river Axe at Colyford. Basically a circular design open at the front, of reinforced concrete, with 4.5 inch brick outer and inner skins and a reinforced concrete roof. Inside are wall recesses, possibly for ammunition, an a possible gun mounting, now buried beneath rubble. The position of the emplacement prevents the gun being brought to bear on the bridge itself which had already been prepared for demolition with explosives. Details of gun also given.


Ordnance Survey, 2011, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV346129.


Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R., 2013 - 2014, South Devon Coast RCZAS National Mapping Programme Project Site Visit, 09-MAY-2014 (Site Visit). SDV351142.

The structure is visible from the road and appears to be extant.


Hegarty, C. + Knight, S. + Sims, R., 2013-2014, South Devon Coast Rapid Coastal Zone Assessment Survey National Mapping Programme Project (Interpretation). SDV351146.

This pillbox is not clearly visible on any of the available 1940s aerial photographs, and the structure was probably built into the fabric of the hedgebank. The subsequent removal of the hedgebank appears to have exposed the structural remains, elliptically shaped and up to 6 metres in width. They seem - on the basis of the aerial photograph evidence - to survive relatively intact in 2006.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV130111Article in Serial: Hellis, J.. 1992. The Taunton Stop Line. Fortress. 14. Unknown. 44-45.
SDV336210Monograph: Wills, H.. 1985. Pillboxes. A Study of UK Defences 1940. Pillboxes. Hardback Volume. 74.
SDV346129Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2011. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey. Map (Digital). [Mapped feature: #107244 ]
SDV347565Report - Survey: THE DEVONSHIRE ASSOCIATION. 2008. WWII Pill Boxes in the Axe Valley. Devonshire Association. Digital + A4. 3-4, 15, 16.
SDV347569Personal Comment: Horner, B.. 1992. Not Applicable.
SDV351142Site Visit: Hegarty, C., Knight, S. and Sims, R.. 2013 - 2014. South Devon Coast RCZAS National Mapping Programme Project Site Visit. AC Archaeology. Digital. 09-MAY-2014.
SDV351146Interpretation: Hegarty, C. + Knight, S. + Sims, R.. 2013-2014. South Devon Coast Rapid Coastal Zone Assessment Survey National Mapping Programme Project. AC Archaeology Report. Digital.
Linked documents:1
SDV351568Archive - Survey: Exeter Archaeology. 2003-2004. East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Archaeological Survey. East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Archaeological Survey. Digital + Mixed Archive Material. Site No. 1216.
SDV352504Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/106G/UK/1412. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Photograph (Paper). RAF/106G/UK/1412 RP 3357-3358 13-APR-1946.
SDV352652Aerial Photograph: Next Perspectives. 2006. Pan Government Agreement. Pan Government Agreement Aerial Photographs. Digital. Next Perspectives PGA Imagery SY2692 17-JUN-2006.
SDV356839Personal Comment: Horner, W.. 1994. East Devon Pillboxes.
SDV357213Worksheet: Cochrane, J. N.. 1996. Pillbox (Gun Emplacement). Defence of Britain Project. Worksheet + Digital.
SDV358963Un-published: Horner, W.. 1994. The Taunton Stop Line. A4 Single Sheet + Digital.
SDV99101Un-published: Hellis, J.. 1990. List of Defensive Sites. Manuscript.

Associated Monuments

MDV125708Part of: Boshill Cross Strong Point (Monument)
MDV119535Part of: The Taunton Stop Line (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV5167 - Survey of Pillboxes in the Axe Valley
  • EDV6127 - Rapid Coastal Zone Assessment Survey National Mapping Programme (NMP) for South-West England - South Coast Devon (Ref: ACD618)

Date Last Edited:Jun 7 2019 4:58PM