Site Records

Site Name: RAF Sopley ('AVO') R3 GCI ROTOR Station

OS Grid Ref: SZ162978

RSG site visit 23rd May 2000

[Source: Nick Catford]

Large diameter brown pipes, each contains the send and return refrigerant lines from the two compressors, these lead into the Baudelot heat exchanger which is located at a higher level and accessed by a ladder. This cools the water which is fed to the cooled water header tank in a small room at the top of the ladder; the air cooler batteries A, B, C and D are fed from here. Air cooling in the Rotor series bunkers was via water cooled cooler batteries - more modern designs used electric air heaters. The feed to and from some of these water cooled batteries (located in a separate room) are the large insulated green pipes

In a partitioned area diagonally opposite the entrance steps is the main air conditioning fan with two sets of filters on either side. To the rear of the Baudelot heat exchanger there are two narrow doorways one leads to the apparatus fan which is used for cooling all the radar equipment and the other doorway opens into another filter room. From this fan there is another door back into the lower spine corridor. Beyond the plant room is the rear stairway to the upper level.

Photo:The steps up to the emergency exit from the south end of the upper level spine corridor
Photo by Nick Catford

Click here for a personal recollection of life at Sopley between 1940 - 1945 written by former WAAF Pat Sparks.


Archive photographs from Air Defence Radar Museum, Neatishead and John Levesley

Other web sites:

Starlight Southern Radar & RAF Sopley - John Levesley's excellent web site includes more pictures and information about RAF Sopley

RAF Sopley Information Booklet - published by the RAF in 1964

WW2 People War - BBC web site

Sopley Airsoft - The Urban Adventure - lots of pictures of Sopley Camp

GALLERY 1 - Mobile, Intermediate & Final (Happidrome) GCI

Click here for more photographs of RAF Sopley


GALLERY 1: The early years 1939 - 1949 GALLERY 2 The early years Part 2
GALLERY 3: 1950 - 1974 GALLERY 4: The R3 bunker in 1993
GALLERY 5: The R3 bunker in 1993 GALLERY 6: The R3 bunker in 1993
GALLERY 7: The R3 in 2000 & camp 2006 GALLERY 8: The domestic camp in 2006
GALLERY 9: The domestic camp in 2006 GALLERY 10: The domestic camp in 2006
GALLERY 11: The domestic camp in 2006  

Click here for Pat Sparks story - a personal account of life at RAF Sopley during WW2
Click here for other personal memories of RAF Sopley

Click here to return to RAF Sopley front page

[Source: Nick Catford]

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Last updated 21st September 2006

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