Site Records

Site Name: RAF Wartling - ROTOR period VHF/UHF transmitter and receiver blocks

OS Grid Ref: TQ69001040 (transmitter) TQ68060972 (receiver)

Sub Brit site visit 13th April 2004

[Source: Nick Catford]

In order to provide communication between the controllers in the R3 bunker at RAF Wartling and the intercepting aircraft, two VHF/UHF multi-channel radio transmitter and receiver blocks were built at remote sites. The transmitter and receiver blocks for the WW2 GCI station at Wartling were located close to Herstmonceux Castle but with the resiting of the station closer to Wartling village, these sites were considered too close; the reason for the remote siting was to stop interference and swamping of the radio signals by the radar arrays. New sites, half a mile apart were therefore selected at Hooe, 1.5 miles east of the technical site. Transmitter and receiver blocks come in two sizes, designated 'small' and 'large'; those at Wartling, which are both still extant are 'large'. Each block would have had a 90' wooden aerial tower alongside. Both towers at Wartling have now been removed, in fact only one original wooden tower is know to still exist at any ROTOR station. The transmitter block at the Crosslaw CHEL Rotor station still has its wooden tower although this was due to be demolished some years ago.

Photo:The transmitter block from the front, now converted into a private dwelling and barely recognisable for what it was.
Photo by Nick Catford

Each site consisted of two buildings, the operations building and a standby set house. The transmitter building is on the east side of of the B2095, set back a short distance from the road.. As built, the transmitter building comprised the transmitter hall, mechanical and electrical room, store, workshop, staff room and toilet. The building has now been converted into a bungalow with the addition of a porch at the front and is barely recognisable as the transmitter block. The adjacent standby set house has been demolished.

Photo:The receiver block from the rear - externally the building is little changed and still retains its steel window shutters.
Photo by Nick Catford

The smaller receiver building comprised a receiver room, mechanical and electrical room, store, workshop, staff room and toilet. Externally there have been few alterations to the building which still retains its original metal window shutters. The building is now used as a naturists' club house; it is 200 yards west of the B2095 along a public footpath which surprisingly runs through the garden. The standby set house alongside is also still extant.

[Source: Nick Catford]

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Last updated 27th September 2004

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