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Military remains in the Mendip Hills

Mendip NMP locationThe Second World War saw new buildings added to Yoxter firing range to the northwest of Priddy and the creation of a bombing decoy complex on Black Down. The Black Down decoy was part of the Second World War defences of the city of Bristol against enemy air raid attacks.

The decoy comprised lighting decoys (QL sites), intended to simulate the city lights and railway marshalling yards, and fire decoys (QF sites) which gave the illusion of targets having been set alight. Control bunkers for the bombing decoys survive on Black Down.

Black Down WWII Bombing Decoy(RAF 3G/TUD/UK/21/PART IV 5356) English Heritage (NMR) RAF photography

Black Down Second World War Bombing Decoy photographed by the RAF on 13 January 1946. The Black Down bombing decoy also comprised a grid pattern of mounds which were set up to prevent airborne landings on this relatively flat and un-wooded area. They were probably constructed prior to the bombing decoys.
© English Heritage (NMR) RAF photography

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Aerial Investigation and Mapping - Swindon
Heritage Protection Department