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 Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments

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Dan M
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PostSubject: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 00:41

I've just spent the last three days absolutely mesmerized by this website called 'wikimapia.' Wikimapia allows a person to mark googlemaps with sites which are of interest to that person. What has me so enthralled is that someone (or many someones) have brilliantly decided to mark as many former and current British military installations as possible. So far I've only been concentrating on mainland Britain and Germany, but it's amazing what people have marked on the maps.

As an example, once you've googled wikimapia and have it on your screen, go to the search portal on the upper right and type in; Bassingbourne, Bovington, Imphal Barracks (Britain and Germany), Helles Barracks, HMNB Devonport or Portsmouth, RM Arbroath, Lakenheath, Glencorse Barracks etc, etc. Some of the locations are marked down to the individual buildings or, in the case of multi-unit locations, which unit is residing in which building.

On top of finding the locations there will be a little written history provided by the person who marked it. Some are better than others and some of the BAOR location histories are in German.

I particularly liked looking at the current and former Army barracks in London around Buck House and in Windsor. A couple of the places I couldn't find locations for were Bickleigh Barracks and the former barracks in Bury St Edmonds, Church Crookham, Shrewsbury, Caterham and Oswestry.

Once a person gets the hang of using it the searching becomes addictive. I didn't realize Norfolk was literally a haven of RAF and USAF bases. The only disappointment I encountered was Aldershot. It's hardly been marked. The camps around it however, have been well done. I especially enjoyed looking at Dering Lines, the Brecon Beacons and Crickhowell.

Take a look. I'm sure everyone here will enjoy it as much as I have.

Cheers,
Dan.

PS: Use the wikimapia satellite as your default.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 09:21

Had a quick look..Will be back when i have more time..
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Shelldrake
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 10:40

Excellent stuff. Dan, enter Church Crookham in the search box, then when it centralises, type in Quetta Park - that will show you the Barracks area, they were knocked down about 10 years ago when Johnnie Gurkha moved out and have been replaced with a housing estate.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 10:59

Church Crookham...that has brought back memories before the Gurkhas was home to 56 (MT) Sqn RE did a Driver Spec Crane A2 there in 1971 while in the R Sigs then the same course again on reinlistment in the RE in 1975...happy days!
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 14:38

Shelldrake wrote:
Dan, enter Church Crookham in the search box, then when it centralises, type in Quetta Park - that will show you the Barracks area, ...
Ta, mate.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 15:45

Dan

I agree this could become extremely addictive and is just the thing for the long cold winter evenings to come.

Bickleigh Barracks on the northern outskirts of Plymouth is the current home of 42 Commando RM. Tap this into your search engine and atleast a couple of the results should give you an exact location (on the northern outskirts of Plymouth).

Our Gunner contributors will doubtless confirm that Old Hall Barracks Oswestry, the home of their Depot and Junior Leaders Regiment for many years was actually closer to Gobowen and could have been in the area of the industrial/housing estate in the the vee of the old railway line/existing railway line to the south of the existing Gobowen Junction station.

Try Copthorne Barracks for Shrewsbury

Bury St Edmunds (the former Depot of the Suffolk Regiment) and now just RHQ of the 3rd TA Battalion of the Royal Anglian Regiment and Caterham (the former home of the Guards Depot which moved to Pirbright and is now part of the Infantry Training Centre Catterick) have long ceased to have any Regular Army presence.

Your comments have highlighted one of the tragedies of this site. In the relatively early days one of our contributors spent an enormous amount of time and expertise to produce an overlay to Google Earth showing the location of many former British (and some Canadian) Barracks in Northern Germany Belgium and Holland. Unfortunately he subsequently departed ("leaving no forwarding address") The data bank is superb but I could provide another 75 plus locations for Schleswig Holstein alone (and another 20 for the Canadian CAOF in Friesland).

The original is buried somewhere in our archives. One of these days I must try to find the time to search for it and republicise the download to our current contributors.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 16:47

JPW, although never having been stationed there, I believe it was Park Hall Barracks/Camp, Oswestry which was accessed from the A495 via Burma Rd, approx 2 mls from Gobowen Station. I think you have merged Old Park Barracks and Park Hall Camp - the former being JLR RE and the latter JLR RA (A recipe for disaster!!). Rolling Eyes
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 16:52

Shelldrake

Thank you I shall have to don full body armour. Now await a Counter Barrage from the Royal Regiment and Demolition Charges from the Sappers.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 17:25

JPW wrote:
Bickleigh Barracks on the northern outskirts of Plymouth is the current home of 42 Commando RM. Tap this into your search engine and atl east a couple of the results should give you an exact location (on the northern outskirts of Plymouth).
Found it, ta. Whoever marked it did so as 42 Commando.


JPW wrote:
Our Gunner contributors will doubtless confirm that Old Hall Barracks Oswestry, the home of their Depot and Junior Leaders Regiment for many years was actually closer to Gobowen and could have been in the area of the industrial/housing estate in the the vee of the old railway line/existing railway line to the south of the existing Gobowen Junction station.
Found the 'vee' between the motorway and the rail line in Gobowen.


JPW wrote:
Try Copthorne Barracks for Shrewsbury
Nothing found for Copthorne Barracks.


JPW wrote:
Bury St Edmunds (the former Depot of the Suffolk Regiment) and now just RHQ of the 3rd TA Battalion of the Royal Anglian Regiment ...
Couldn't find the TA location in BSE.


JPW wrote:
... and Caterham (the former home of the Guards Depot which moved to Pirbright and is now part of the Infantry Training Centre Catterick) have long ceased to have any Regular Army presence.
The former site of Caterham Barracks is between the Tesco's north to the skate park. There sure are a lot of Tesco's marked out. Sainsbury's too.


If you're looking for interesting sites try all of the barracks around Edinburgh and the same for Catterick. Apparently there are supposed to be a lot of installations around Colchester but all I could find was the MCTC. Shorncliffe is also confusing as to whether it's a former or current site.

Cheers,
Dan.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 17:26

JPW wrote:
Shelldrake

Thank you I shall have to don full body armour. Now await a Counter Barrage from the Royal Regiment and Demolition Charges from the Sappers.




lol! lol!
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Dan M
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 17:39

Shelldrake wrote:
JPW, although never having been stationed there, I believe it was Park Hall Barracks/Camp, Oswestry which was accessed from the A495 via Burma Rd, approx 2 mls from Gobowen Station. I think you have merged Old Park Barracks and Park Hall Camp - the former being JLR RE and the latter JLR RA (A recipe for disaster!!).
There's a Park Hall Stadium north of Oswestry and south of Gobowen. Possibly the former barrack/camp site?

Wasn't the Lancastrian Brigade depot also located in Oswestry back in the day?

Cheers,
Dan.

PS: Also trying to locate the Fusilier Brigade depot in Sutton Coldfield.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 18:08

Dan

We need a quick geography lesson

Oswestry is in Shropshire but very close to the Welsh Border

Fulwood Barracks Preston was the home of the Lancastrian Brigade or many years.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 18:44

JPW wrote:
Oswestry is in Shropshire but very close to the Welsh Border

Fulwood Barracks Preston was the home of the Lancastrian Brigade or many years.
John,

I got the information on the Lancastrian Brigade in Oswestry from regiments.org which had a page on the names and locations of infantry regiment/training brigade/regional brigade/division depots.

For the Lancastrian Brigade the website indicates that between 1946-48 the brigade depot was at Carlisle and Oswestry. In 1948 the depot moved to Preston followed by a move to Formby in 1960.

I'm going to have to post a 'county map' of Britain in the den to keep all of this straight in my mind. I already get Oswestry and Shrewsbury confused with one another.

The names of towns here are much easier to comprehend. Names like Moose Jaw, Chicoutimi and Qidi Vidi.

Cheers,
Dan.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   20/11/2012, 22:13

Dan

More info for you

Shorncliffe was a mini Aldershot with accommodation for a complete Infantry Brigade plus, all that is left is a Barracks for the UK based Gurkha Infantry Battalion

Sutton Coldfield. You are looking for St Georges Barracks built as the Depot for the Royal Warwickshire Regiment but has undergone many changes of use over the years.

It is now Headquarters Defence Infrastructure Organisation responsible inter alia for the Tri Service Defece Estate. Try Kingston Road Sutton Coldfield B75 7RL This should bring you to the centre of the old barrack, the names of the local roads indicate where the Married Quarters were

Shrewsbury The former Depot King's Shropshire Light Infantry is now Headquarters 143 West Midlands Brigade. Try Copthorne Road SY3 8LZ and you should come to the Barracks (you will be horrified to see the number of cars parked on the Drill Square)


Last edited by JPW on 21/11/2012, 01:02; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   21/11/2012, 00:49

JPW wrote:
More info for you
John, you are the best. Thanks for all of your replies.


JPW wrote:
Shorncliffe was a mini Aldershot with accommodation for a complete Infantry Brigade plus, all that is left is a Barracks for the UK based Gurkha Infantry Battalion.
The MOD site states that the Gurkha barracks are named for Sir John Moore. Aren't the barracks at the Winchester ATR also named for Moore? Is it possible for barracks at two separate camps to have the same name?


JPW wrote:
Sutton Coldfield. You are looking for St Georges Barracks built as the Depot for the Royal Warwickshire Regiment but has undergone many changes of use over the years.

It is now Headquarters Defence Infrastructure Organisation responsible inter alia for the Tri Service Defece Estate. Try Kingston Road Sutton Coldfield B75 7RL This should bring you to the centre of the old barrack, the names of the local roads indicate where the Married Quarters were.
Found it. It's marked as the barracks. Again, ta.


JPW wrote:
Shrewsbury The former Depot King's Shropshire Brigade is now Headquarters 143 West Midlands Brigade. Try Copthorne Road SY3 8LZ and you should come to the Barracks (you will be horrified to see the number of cars parked on the Drill Square)
Found it. Parking cars on the Parade Square is also a pet peeve of mine.

I've started trying out the different versions of the maps that are available. The version that I've been concentrating on is wikimapia satellite. But I've found that if I switch between map styles while looking at a specific location, different bits of information are brought forward.

It's like any other program. The more you play with and learn how to use it, the more information you can get out of it.

Cheers,
Dan.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   21/11/2012, 10:26

Dan

To complete your initial shopping list

Bury St Edmunds. Depot the Suffolk Regiment (Gibraltar Barracks?) was on the western side of town on the Newmarket Road but closed many years ago when basic training for the East Anglian Infantry Regiments was concentrated at the former Essex Regiment Depot at Warley/Brentwood on the eastern outskirts of London

The majority of the site must have been sold off for civilian use , all that remains is a small TA enclave in the north east corner (top right) and Blenheim House which is currently, I believe, Battalion Headquarters of 3rd Royal Anglian Regiment, a TA Battalion with the Rifle Companies anything up to a 100 miles away.

Try IP33 3SW. The clue is in the name of the roads. Arras, Blenheim, Dettingen and Gibraltar were all Suffolk Regiment Battle Honours.
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   21/11/2012, 12:03

Thanks Dan for the link.I'm spending a lot of time looking through them,so I'll see you all next year. cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Wikimapia: Current & Former British Military Establishments   25/11/2012, 00:25

JPW wrote:
Bury St Edmunds. Depot the Suffolk Regiment (Gibraltar Barracks?) was on the western side of town on the Newmarket Road but closed many years ago when basic training for the East Anglian Infantry Regiments was concentrated at the former Essex Regiment Depot at Warley/Brentwood on the eastern outskirts of London.
Found both; the former site in BSE and in Brentwood. Wikipedia suggests that Gibraltar Barracks is the correct name for the BSE site. Couldn't find a name for the Brentwood site other than Warley. The site is now the corporate headquarters for Ford Motors in the UK.


JPW wrote:
The clue is in the name of the roads. Arras, Blenheim, Dettingen and Gibraltar were all Suffolk Regiment Battle Honours.
This works quite well for any former site that had PMQ's or whatever married quarters are called across the pond. It seems every barracks had a Dettingen Road. Find that and chances are good that you've found the former barracks.

Again, ta for all the help. Hope I haven't been too much of a bother.

Cheers,
Dan.

PS: Sorry for the delay in responding. Computers been in the shop.
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