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Paul Reed

Bremen Redoubt

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Paul Reed

Found this photos while I was sorting out some old photo albums last week; they were taken by me c.1990 in the Bremen Redoubt in the grounds of the Zonnebeke brickworks. A truly magical place; a WW1 dugout you could just wander around at your leisure! If only I could capture the smell for you as well; it was truly something.

Sadly, I understand the whole thing collapsed a few years ago and there is nothing of it left now.

The first shot is taken from the bottom of the original stairs looking up.

post-6-1130865223.jpg

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Paul Reed

Shot of the NCOs/Officers bunks.

post-6-1130865270.jpg

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Paul Reed

Looking down main corridor with more bunks.

post-6-1130865306.jpg

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Paul Reed

Other Ranks bunks at the far end of the dugout.

Hope they are of interest; I have some more somewhere.

post-6-1130865376.jpg

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paul guthrie

Thanks for those, I was lucky enough ot be there in 1998 when it was wide open.

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Max Poilu

Hi Paul,

Good photos. It was a fantastic place - I was lucky to get down there too in the late 1990's. Glad you found the pictures that you mentioned in the topic below. There are some more pictures and info here :

Yorkshire Trench (and Bremen Redoubt).

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Cnock

Bremen Redoubt - 1998

Regards,

Cnock

post-7723-1130872428.jpg

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shaymen

Great Pics chaps

Thanks for sharing them.

Glyn

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Michael

Thanks for the photos. What a shame it's no longer there.

The fact that it lasted so long demonstrates how robust the German fortifications were and why our artillery bombardments were often not effective.

Mick

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Paul Johnson

Thanks Guys,

These are wonderful photos, it's such a shame that it's all gone.

(Paul, maybe your old photos would make a great "then & now" style book?)

Regards

PAUL J :)

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Paul Johnson

Thanks Guys,

These are wonderful photos, it's such a shame that it's all gone.

(Paul, maybe your old photos would make a great "then & now" style book?)

Regards

PAUL J :)

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mebu

Michael, yes they were good....but not German, this was a product of Australian tunnelling, Peter.

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Paul Reed

Out of interest Peter, which Australian unit built them?

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Paul Reed
(Paul, maybe your old photos would make a great "then & now" style book?)

Regards

PAUL J :)

Hi Paul - maybe one day... when time permits! B)

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mebu

Paul, in answer to your question, a quick resume of Bremen....

Prior to the autumn '17 attack, there were very few German dugouts in the Zonnebeke area. Earlier on, it was too far in the rear, and German undergrounds were further forward, eg at Hooge and Polygon Buttes.

The Canadians found that underground accommodation was necessary and the 1st Canadian Tunnelling Coy started work on several tunnellings in the Zonnebeke area. The initial borings were carried out by the AE &MM&BC (the Australian Electrical and Mechanical Mining and Boring Company , "the alphabeticals", under Major Roger Morse). When the Canadians moved from the sector the 1st Australian Tunnelling Company took over several sites, one of which was the site at "Brandenburg" a German strongpoint...which did not have any underground shelter before. 254 Tunn Coy RE probably finished what the Australians had started.

The tunnels at the VanBiervliet brickyard/ Bremen Redoubt were discovered in 1983, found as it had been left, with whisky bottles, spanners etc on the floor.

and Aleks Deseyne, the then curator of Zonnebeke museum, researched it.

It is known that there were 86 similar tunnelled dugouts in the local area....of which only 4 were re-used German workings...almost all were "original" British/Canadian /Australian origins. Still, many people assume that such things are German.....eg several guide books say the OP on Hill 60 is German....when it points East (Major Jolly and the 4th Australian Field Company would not be pleased) Hope this answers your query, Peter.

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mebu

Here's Brandenburg..... map is dated 2.7.16......Bremen on later British maps Peter

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Paul Reed

Many thanks for that information Peter - much appreciated.

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Michael
Still, many people assume that such things are German.....

...including me. Thanks for putting me right

Mick

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bobfoster

Excellent photos of the Bremen Redoubt. Whst a shame it has collapsed. I was lucky enough to visit it about 1994.

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Malte Znaniecki

Thanks for the brilliant photographs and for the sketch !

Malte

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