The Atlantik Wall In Normandy



V1 Flying Bomb Site At La Boissais  Map 1210E

The rocket launch and maintenance site at La Boissais is the most complete that I have found in Normandy. There are visible signs of the visits from the RAF, but most of the site is intact. The site would have been constructed in 1943/44 in anticipation of the imminent arrival of the V1 Flying Bomb. They were built at Peeumunde on the Baltic sea. Production of the V1 and V2 was delayed due to the bombing raids carried out by the RAF This and all the other sites were ready to receive their V1 Flying Bombs, but because of the Normandy landings and the arrival of American troops in the area the V1ís never arrived. They were launched for the first time from the Pas de Calais, on the same day that American troops liberated the area. The large half submerged building was the reception garage for the bombs, after they had been made ready they would have been stored in one of the three underground garages. The concrete roads on the site are original, and would have enabled a speedy transfer to the launch area. The building near the ramp was constructed using no metal, and it was here that the magnetic compass was set. This and the ramp were both set on the same angle for the trajectory of the V1 (344o.10) towards Bristol. The blockhouse, near the house, and away from the main site would have housed the propellants for the launch ramp. These had to be kept separate and were volatile  when mixed. The other buildings would have housed the launch crew and served as workshops. The V1 was to have been assembled at Bricquebec and would have been transported here by road, minus the wings and fuel. The RAF visited this and other sites in the area many times and for that reason the Germans started building smaller less visible launch ramps. There are signs of bomb and tank damage on many of the buildings, including the rear of the antimagnetic building. The sites had to be situated close to the sea because the V1 had a flight range of only 250 kms. This is the reason why sites were constructed in this part of Normandy to be able to hit the towns and cites in the south west of England Portsmouth, Plymouth, Exeter and Bristol being the selected targets.


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