The Atlantik Wall In Normandy

 

 

 

Wn203 Pointe Du Brick   Map 1210E

 


When the Germans first occupied Normandy in June 1940 they were unprepared to defend the coastline and were fearful that the British and Free French might try to attack the port of Cherbourg to gain a foothold again in France.
Unable to build defences quickly the brought in a batterie of four railway guns. This set of guns called Gneisenau were of the type SKl45 and had a bore of 150 mm. They were positioned on this portion of railway line, now used as a road since the late 1940's (D116), because of the double curve in the track. Railway guns have no traverse unless they are positioned on a curve in the track or on a turntable. There still exists a short tunnel with the remains of a concrete structure inside, this was constructed by the Germans as a safe storage for the ammunition.
There is also supposed to be a passage to the bunker. Later a small Casemate of the H667 type was built below the line to give enfilade fire along the beach towards Cherbourg.  Interestingly the rear entrance wall of the bunker is built up of local stone rather than concrete. This position was known as Wn203 and was equipped with a 50 mm gun.
In his book Der Atlantik Wall, Heinze Zimmermann claims that the tunnels are part of a strong point that was not finished, and would have included many more tunnels. There are plans in existence that show Skoda anti tank guns at both ends of the tunnel and the e4ntrance being from 50 mm gun bunker. The Locals also tell on train loads of cement travelling this railway line on their way to the German construction sites further to the east of Cherbourg.
That fact that the line was worn out at the end of the occupation possibly helped cause its early closure in 1947.

On a visit in March 2016 the site has been cleared, and you are able to walk along the concrete trenches
 

WN236 H667 - SK/Casemate - MG Stand - Ringstand Flak

 

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