Site Records


SiteName: Broughton - RAF Longley Lane SOC Communications Bunker

Brass Pan Lane
Broughton, Lancs.
OS Grid Ref: SD528362

Sub Brit site visit 3rd September 2003

[Source: Nick Catford]

The Communications bunker for the Rotor Sector Operations Centre at RAF Longley Lane is located on the west side of a farm track on the west side of the M6. The other, more well known buildings, that made up RAF Longley Lane SOC are located on the east side of the M6. The 'ops' block is in Langley Lane and later served as the ROC 21 Group HQ. The site is now occupied by a vet's surgery although the bunker is unused. The filter room and stand-by set house are in Whittingham Lane and are both unused although the filter room was sold by auction in 2000.

The bunker was built during WW2 within the grounds of RAF Barton Hall which was No 9 Group Fighter Command HQ and ROC North West Area HQ between 1941-1953; comprising Barton Hall, Comms. Block, 'Ops' Block, Filter Block and the Standby Set House.

In the Rotor period the bunker complex was renamed RAF Longley Lane while Barton Hall itself became a CAA training school.

Photo:The plant entrance to the communications bunker
Photo by Nick Catford

The bunker housed all the communications equipment for the SOC (radio, telephone, teleprinter etc.) feeding into the filter room and the 'ops' room. It consists of an earth covered block with two entrances in the western face. The northern personnel entrance leads into a series of rooms on either side of a short corridor. Two of the rooms still have signs on the doors indicating that they contained high voltage equipment; one appears to have been the transformer room. At the end of the corridor there is a larger room with two engine beds.

Plan of the bunker
Drawn by Nick Catford

There is a side corridor to the right and at the end of it a door which still says 'Apparatus Room' on it. This opens into the largest room in the bunker, now made bigger by the partial removal of a partition wall. The second wider plant entrance is at the southern end, leading into a room adjacent to the apparatus room.

The bunker is used to store redundant farm machinery and other farm equipment.

To the north of the bunker there is a brick building of unknown purpose.

Photo:Brick building with the communications bunker behind it
Photo by Nick Catford

 

The Communications
Bunker behind the
brick building

The Personnel Entrance

Apparatus Room
Door

Apparatus Room

Source: Bob Jenner

[Source: Nick Catford]

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Last updated 7th September 2003

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