View Full Version : Unknown installation, can anyone identify?

28-12-2010, 19:47
Jim C and myself spent a damp afternoon at Hunsdon again today. With the undergrowth really laid bare due to the cold temperature, we found something unusual. A square pad of concrete about eight inches thick measuring about 11'X 11'
Mounted within this are four heavy steel brackets, set at a distance of 8 foot apart, one in each corner. Does anyone know what this could have been??

In the forty years I have been walking this place, it never fails to surprise me!






Able Mabel
28-12-2010, 19:56
Possibly the four brackets were the bottom section of legs that supported some high level tank ????

How remote is it ?
Is it on a dispersed site or technical??

28-12-2010, 21:54
It is behind a long gone dispersal, a few feet from what was a 'Technical block type A', converted to a RDF repair workshop. All this is not that far from the tech site. Nothing on the plans (no surprise there!)

28-12-2010, 22:19
Is to far away for a windsock mount???

28-12-2010, 23:04
It would have been one hell of a windsock for an eleven foot square concrete base, and four great big mounts like that Ian!

28-12-2010, 23:08
could it have been a lighting gantry or water tower base

28-12-2010, 23:39
It would have been one hell of a windsock for an eleven foot square concrete base, and four great big mounts like that Ian!

Hi Denis your right i didnt quite get the dimensions quite right, the windsock would have been as big as a barrage balloon

28-12-2010, 23:45
I'm leaning toward raised Braithwaite tank for dispersed site.

28-12-2010, 23:56
Flashearth link + marks the spot.
All the dispersed sites are a mile to the west of the airfield MM, this is just off the northern edge of the airfield, and to the left of the remains of the north south runway.

29-12-2010, 00:32
Crumbs, there's not alot left of that airfield, no wonder you have spent forty years walking around it!
Sorry from an earlier post I thought it was intimated that it was found near a dispersed site, still thinking water tower, or is not possible?

29-12-2010, 00:47
But forty years ago there was a lot there!

No water tower on the plans for Hunsdon, but there is marked a 'Sleeve Streamer Mast. as #245 on the plan. This was not exactly situated where the plan says it should be, but is in the immediate area. Can someone post an image of a 'Sleeve Streamer Mast' and its base for me to compare?. Ian might well have been right after all!

29-12-2010, 00:52
But forty years ago there was a lot there!

That explains things a bit!

Isn't a sleeve streamer a windsock, if so that base seems too large.
Could there have been a EWS in the area? Would all water supplies be necessarily marked on site plans? St Athan has a Braithwaite that dosen't appear on plans, surely every station would need some kind of its own water storage/reservoir (thinking about your point of no water tower on plans).

P Bellamy
29-12-2010, 01:15
From the photos it's unlikely that it's the base of a Braithwaite tower. There are usually sturdy I-section girders with cross-braces.

It looks more like the base of some sort of antenna mast from the triangular mountings.

All the best,

29-12-2010, 07:40
I agree with Paul. Look at the close-up image of one of the metal supports. The glove gives scale making the sides of the triangle about 130 mm; even four would be inadequate to support the legs of a decent capacity water tower.

29-12-2010, 12:01
I assume then that there is about 10" between the mounts centres, seems reasonable for some kind of antenna tower as PB suggests.

29-12-2010, 12:49
Just to clarify
The base is 11 foot square, the mounts are set in from each corner by about 18 inches. The mounts themselves are exactly eight feet apart.

29-12-2010, 13:23
As I've said on many occasions there is nothing more exciting than a lump of concrete with a metal object embedded into it :D.


29-12-2010, 14:26
My sentiments entirely Graham:)

But it is frustrating to find these things and not know what they were. I literally fell over the damn thing having probably walked over that spot countless times in the past. Its seems that this year the undergrowth has been burned back by the frosts, exposing both that, and the concrete ring gunpit I posted on the Hunsdon thread.
Pictures were courtesy of Jim C's phone camera!

Chris Lowe
29-12-2010, 14:30
Did you find any cable conduit in the concrete base Denis.

29-12-2010, 14:31
I am going back there tomorrow with a spade to clear the moss from the base for a better photo Chris.

29-12-2010, 15:09
If there's some sort of cable conduit nearby then it might be the base of an anemometer tower. These were 30 ft (10 m) high - but usually made of angle iron (a big meccano set!). No conduit; then I veer towards a windsock mast.

30-12-2010, 16:58
Just this minute got back from the site,
Tried to clear the roots away but they proved tougher to shift than I imagined. Took a pic of the base again with the edge cleared. Gloves for scale. Couldnt find any conduit on this search Resmoroh.

What I do keep failing to appreciate, is that the wood that is there now, has grown further out by about 30 feet in places. and makes it difficult for me to get my bearing on what was where and when! Something NP tells us often is not to rely on the plans for total accuracy.

*I have edited this post as I believed it was the streamer mast base. After consulting with JimC who pointed out my 245 and 243's were round the wrong way! The streamer mast was the other side of the control tower. The only buildings on the plan in the same location to this base were a Gas Equipment store and a Battery Charging Room. This base remains a mystery*.

Thanks to everyone for their input into this thread.

30-12-2010, 17:49
I remain a doubter if you mean windsock, I've never come across such a hefty base for one and I can't understand how it would need four elevated feet at 8' apart.
Most have much narrower mountings to supports which allow the mast to be swivelled down for maintainance and sock changes etc.

Is it impossible to be a latter aerial intsallation over the original windsock site?
Another way to find out windcone positions are those airfield information sheets that were published post-war, as they show the locations for visiting pilots to know where they are.

Anyway glad you managed to unearth the other glove!

30-12-2010, 23:55
I remain a doubter if you mean windsock, I've never come across such a hefty base for one..
My thoughts too. All those I've seen in the past consist of a wooden pole which is sited between a pair of wooden uprights, say six inches apart. IIRC this was called a tabernacle.


Richard Flagg
31-12-2010, 00:24
Definitely not a windsock, this is the remains of the one at Newton;

Jim C
31-12-2010, 00:48
There are still traces of yellow paint on the four triangular brackets, similar to the paint found on the perimiter track light that I rescued years ago. Was yellow a standard colour paint for preserving metalwork or a 'warning' colour?

31-12-2010, 11:21
I'm sure that I have seen mounts like this somewhere, but can't remember where, when I do I shall try and refer to site plans.
They look to me like they either support a smallish aerial tower or some kind of structure just off the ground, but what:confused:

31-12-2010, 11:38
And that is the best that we can ask for MM. someone must recognise the mounts, I was just surprised it wasnt Graham, Surveyor of all things of rusted steel and broken concrete:)

09-01-2011, 11:31
Dont know if this may be similar but its on the old Met site next to the tower at Dunkeswell


09-01-2011, 11:49
Thanks ricasso:)
If yours had four legs instead of three this would be the sort of thing. Unfortunately ours is close on three hundred yards from where the tower was.

09-01-2011, 12:34
ah well, just a thought, BTW, the instillation in the background of my photo is the "new" official Met Office station for that part of the south west.