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Found 267 results

  1. So this was more of a cheeky little explore than anything planned in advance. A few of us were in the South of France for the Urban Explorer Wedding of the Year, an event that was most definitely epic and involved many many drunken selfies of at least half a dozen drunken explorers (including the Bride and Groom) but hey that's another story and not one for here The day after we left the Bride and Groom to do Honeymoony type things and took ourselves off on a trip to the local cokeworks/coal miney type place. It isn't epic or awesome but it was a pretty damn fine mooch to end the trip with. It is a derpy derp and appears to be a popular place to burn out cars but worth a trip anyway History is limited and in French so here is my best shot at something that vaguely resembles information but however doesn't mean a great deal to me and is probably worth skipping lol!.... The Sainte Marie open pit was a coal mine of the Mining Unit of Tam, H.B.C.M. (Houilleres du Bassin Centre Midi), in the south-western part of France, near Albi. In this area, a large amount of coal has been exploited by Underground mining. This pit was designed in order to exploit the coal remaining around the shaft (Saint Marie shaft) of an old Underground mine situated in the basin of Carmaux.The diameter at the top of the pit was 1200 metres and its final depth was expected to be 300 metres. The first 100 metres were composed of tertiary deposits (clay and sand) which covered the carboniferous formation. The average slope angle of the Tertiary is 37° (without benches) and in the Coal Measures, it was foreseen from 37° to 50° (with benches of 6 metres high) depending on the slope situaüon. At present üme, the depth of the mine is about 160 metres. Nine coal seams have been mined by Underground working between 1900 and 1984. Different methods have been used depending on the thickness, the dip of the layer and the dimension of the panel. In fact, panels were backfilled, caved or undermined long-wall. The basin of Carmaux is a large synclinal split by a dense network of faults which directions are approximately N 140 E. The dips and the dip directions which was left around the shaft, but, close to the slopes, begin the old exploited long walls. These long walls are at different topographic levels due to the particular structure and have been exploited in panels lined by the faults odented approximately N140. The first design of the open pit was done by a Standard geotechnical survey; this one has taken into account the geomechanical, hydrogeological, structural Parameters äs well äs the "decohesion", induced by the revival of subsidence due to old Underground mining. However, some mining slopes can locally present risks of slipping induced by old Underground mining. Anyway here are a few pics Thanks for looking
  2. Ouvrage A28 is a smaller plant (petit ouvrage) of the Maginot Line. The site was surveyed by CORF (Commission d'Organisation des Régions Fortifiées), the Maginot Line's design and construction agency; A28 was approved for construction in May 1931. It was completed at a cost of 11 million francs by the contractor Duval-Weyrich of Nancy. The petit ouvrage was planned for construction in two phases. The second phase was to provide a separate entrance block a short distance to the rear. Heavy water infiltration required the provision of more extensive drainage work than originally planned. The galleries are excavated at an average depth of up to 30 meters (98 ft). The 1940 manning of the ouvrage under the command of Captain Coste comprised 127 men and 2 officers of the 161st Fortress Infantry Regiment. A28 played no significant role in either the Battle of France in 1940 or the Lorraine Campaign of 1944. After the Second World War it became part of a strongpoint in the northeastern defenses against Soviet attack. A28 remained under Army control until after 1971, when it was declassified and sold. Visited with The_Raw. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17
  3. Château de la Favorite , also called "Château du Prince Charles", was built in 1734 according to the plans of the architect Germain Boffrand and under the direction of Jean Marchal. It was owned by Charles Alexander. After his death in 1780, Emperor Joseph II inherited the castle, which offers it for sale. Until the 1990s the castle was still in good condition. After another sale, the castle was gutted. The roof was secured and windows were walled in the 21st century. A few years ago, it was still accessible through a window, unfortunately no longer today. 1 2 3 4 5
  4. In the former limestone mine a production for oxygen was shifted to the underground during World War II. Visited with The_Raw. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14
  5. The fortress with a lot of murals in its bunkers is part of the second fortified belt of forts of Metz and had its baptism of fire in late 1944, when the Battle of Metz occurred. The Fortification was part of a wider program of fortifications called "Moselstellung", encompassing fortresses scattered between Thionville and Metz in the valley Moselle. The aim of Germany was to protect against a French attack to take back Alsace-Lorraine and Moselle from the German Empire. The fortification system was designed to accommodate the growing advances in artillery since the end of XIXth century. Based on new defensive concepts, such as dispersal and concealment, the fortified group was to be, in case of attack, an impassable barrier for French forces. Covering an area of 83 ha, the Fortress is constructed from 1907 to 1914. The group fortification has 2 fortified barracks and can accommodate a total of 560 men. It has 8 pieces of artillery, 6 of them 100mm and 2 of them 77mm. It has eight domes and twenty observation points and lookouts. The various items are connected by 1,700m of underground galleries. In its water tanks, it has 2,640 m3 of water. The energy required for its operation is ensured by seven diesel engines of 27 hp each. During The Annexation of Alsace-Lorraine, the fort receives a garrison of gunners belonging to the XVIth Army Corps. From 1914-1918, it served as a relay for the German soldiers at the front post. Its equipment and weapons are then at the forefront of military technology. In 1919, the fort was occupied by the French army. After the departure of French troops in June 1940, the German army reinvests the fort. In early September 1944, at the beginning of the Battle of Metz, the German command integrates the fort into the defensive system set up around Metz. In Second World War, on September 2, 1944, Metz is declared fortress Reich by Hitler. The fortress must be defended to the last by German troops. Visited with The_Raw, extreme_ironing and Maniac. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37
  6. A while back I posted a report from a creme de la menthe location called Chateau a la Mange Tout. This sanatorium sits on the same site, not bad having two half decent explores right next to each other, joie de vivre! I meant to post a report at the time but never got round to it. It wasn't massively photogenic so I only took a load of hand held shots but there was a fair bit of stuff inside. Bon appetit, as the French would say Last but not least we had a quick peek inside the morgue, no slab but some body fridges left behind. Tres bien ensemble
  7. This one is from earlier on in the year during a trip to France/Luxembourg, one I thought worth posting up here! Chateau Lumiere needs no introduction, a magnificent building with such grandeur its hard to believe its been abandoned. The huge glass skylight allows daylight to illuminate all the floors, making for wonderful lighting. During the last few years Chateau Lumiere become a bit of a tourist destination, with vandals smashing the large mirror in the big foyer. Luckily its fared well over its many years of dereliction and is still one of the most beautiful buildings I have had the pleasure of exploring. History Built in early 1900s, this house was owned by a tobacco tycoon from Switzerland. After the owner moved away in 1950s, the house was used for business purposes, and was sold multiple times before finally being left empty. There isn't a confirmed date it was abandoned, but the general consensus seems to say its in the 1980s. The Explore After finally finding the location of it and seeing it was a reasonable distance from Luxembourg where were staying for 2 weeks, it became a must do. We found a charming cheap hotel in the next town over and booked a night there. Finally the day was upon us and were there, stood outside awestruck by the Neo-Baroque styling of Lumiere. We looked for a way inside and quickly found a well beaten track round the back. As we approached I could hear voices inside. We definitely weren't the only visitors that day, in fact there were loads of people wondering around inside! Most other people were explorers like us, however some weren't there to take photos as it turned out a bit later... We started with the basement and worked upwards. The basement actually had quite a bit of stuff still left there, unlike the rest of the floors that were bare to say the least. In fact the house was almost empty from the ground floor up. All the fittings and fixtures remained, but no personal items were left at all. We photographed it from nearly every angle we could think of. The best thing about Lumiere is just how photogenic it is. Its hard to take a bad picture. It was a fairly relaxed explore, until we witnessed a group of 12 year olds smashing the glass skylight and then coming downstairs smashing bricks onto the marble floor. The red-mist descended as I yelled down at them at them from one of the skylight balcony's while waving my arms around like a loony. I must have looked like a madman. They didn't understand my English, I certainly didn't understand their French. Luckily they didn't stick around much longer to do any more damage. With the drama over we got back to the explore, now alone in the house. We spent about 3 hours inside in total, but you could easily spent much longer there if you wanted to photograph everything. One thing that struck me was the quality of every little detail. Silly things like the latches on the windows still work flawlessly and feels better made and smoother than any modern window latch I've used before. Anyway, on with the photos. Photos Externals Internals In the porch there is this notice, translates roughly too: "Many of us have seen that you like this in all its splendor. Photographers, Models, Fans of Urbex, but some unscrupulous individuals do not respect...Alas! Yet you are known everywhere for your splendor, and the sublime cliches that you have brought us. Today April 19, 2015 we owe you this ... to give you a bit of sparkle ... after the vandalism that you have undergone. Thank you to those who will preserve you forever Respect this place as you would at home PLEASE! Do not break! Do not vandalize it.. Do not leave rubbish, paper etc.. Bring your waste back with you.." The entrance hall and foyer. Sadly this used to be where the the large mirror was, but was broken in 2015. A rather interesting choice of wallpaper... Recent damage to the glass skylight. Saw this in the loft and couldn't help but get a photo too The Details The Basement
  8. The chateau is one of the many large abandoned houses that can be found around France. Built in the 1700s by the lord of the village it is within, the house has been modified and expanded over the years. The vaulted basement contains a full size snooker table below the original arched ceiling. A large stone fireplace is the centre-point of a sitting area to one end of the basement. The front entrance opens directly to a small stone staircase, leading up to the main living areas which are slightly raised from ground level, or down to the basement. Visited with @SpiderMonkey
  9. Another one from my little journey to France in july 2017. This is one was a bit doubtfull after stories about police , attentive neighbours, cars on the premises. Apparently neighbours use the backyard to park their cars. A pretty dark house with solid contrasts that made me instinctively decide to go to single shots (do not ask why!) in the process of finishing my photo's at home I had a near heart attack: do I really have so few pictures of this? will it be okay with my window parties? But in the end I'm pretty satisfied with the result of these sibgle raw shots since the place had amazing light and shadow and i think HDR wouldn't do much honour to that. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.
  10. Description & History: Ouvrage Rochonvillers is one of the largest of the Maginot Line fortifications. The gros ouvrage or large work was fully equipped and occupied in 1935 as part of the Fortified Sector of Thionville in the Moselle. Rochonvillers saw little action during World War II, but due to its size it was repaired and retained in service after the war. During the Cold War it found a new use as a hardened military command center, first for NATO and then for the French Army. Rochonvillers was considered an early priority for construction, and as such went through several concepts in early design while the overall concept of the Maginot Line was being investigated. It was initially proposed in 1926 as a single massive fort shielding two artillery turrets in the rear. The next concept envisioned a closely grouped arrangement of works, four peripheral units around a turreted artillery block., located somewhat to the south of the present installation. A third iteration was termed the "village", a very large and expensive concept that was opposed by the residents of Rochonvillers. The fourth version was described as a fort palmé (or palmate), based on the ideas of Colonel Tricaud, first published in the Revue du Génie in 1917. The fort palmé proposed a dispersed set of fortifications fanning out from a central subterranean trunk which would contain barracks, utilities and ammunition magazines. This concept was adopted for the entire Line, with the strong support of Marshal Philippe Pétain, in late 1927. The Rochonvillers site was surveyed by CORF (Commission d'Organisation des Régions Fortifiées), the Maginot Line's design and construction agency, in 1929. Work by the contractor, Campernon-Bernard, began the next year, and the position became operational in 1935, at a cost of 123 million francs, the third most expensive ouvrage in the Northeast. Rochonvillers covers an unusually large area. The combat blocks are connected to each other and to the subterranean barracks, magazines and entries at the rear by underground galleries at an average depth of 30 meters (98 ft). The locations of the entrances in a ravine allowed a relatively short inclined descent to the gallery complex. Stairs, ammunition hoists and chutes for spent casings rise to the surface at each block. The central utility plant or usine is just inside the personnel entry. Rochonvillers, as one of the largest ouvrages, was given a large "M1" magazine some distance in from the munitions entrance, an arrangement would be useful for a command post in later years. A large barracks is located at the junction of the personnel and munitions galleries. The 1940 manning of the ouvrage under the command of Commandant Guillemain comprised 756 men and 26 officers of the 169th Fortress Infantry Regiment and the 151st Position Artillery Regiment. The units were under the umbrella of the 42nd Fortress Corps of the Third Army, Army Group 2. Peacetime quarters for the garrisons of Rochonvillers and Molvange were at the Camp d'Angevillers. Rochonvillers did not see significant action in the Battle of France in 1940, nor in the Lorraine Campaign of 1944. The Germans in 1940 largely bypassed the area, advancing along the valley of the Meuse and Saar rivers, threatening the rear of the Thionville sector. An order to fortress troops by sector commander Colonel Jean-Patrice O'Sullivan to prepare for withdrawal on 17 June was reversed by O'Sullivan. On 21 June a 75mm gun in Block 5 exploded, killing one gunner and seriously wounding another. The gun position has never been repaired.[30] Rochonvillers was bombarded by heavy artillery on 22 June, with a projectile penetrating and exploding in Block 5. On June 30, 1940, the troops of the 169th RIF were ordered to evacuate their positions by the French command, seven days after the 22 June 1940 armistice. The occupying Germans used Rochonvillers' barracks and magazine areas as troop quarters. After its occupation by the Americans in 1944, the Americans used some of the turrets and cloches in Blocks 5, 6 and 7 for experiments with armor-piercing weapons, in preparation for their assault on the Siegfried Line. In the 1950s the French government became concerned about a possible invasion by the Warsaw Pact through Germany. A number of the larger ouvrages were selected to form defensive ensembles or môles around which a defense might be organized and controlled. Rochonvillers was chosen in 1951 to become the center of the môle de Rochonvillers, in company with Molvange and Bréhain, and later Immerhof. Block 5 was re-equipped with 105mm and 135mm guns and 12.7mm machine guns, while the 135mm turret of Block 6 was repaired with parts from the turret from Four-à-Chaux. Repairs to waterproofing and tunnel lining were undertaken at this time. By 1956 the ouvrage was restored to its original state, apart from the renovations to Blocks 5 and 6. With France's acquisition of nuclear weapons in 1960, the Maginot fortifications began to be viewed as an expensive anachronism. Funding was provided for maintenance, but for little more. The Maginot Line, while obsolete in terms of its armament, was viewed as a series of useful deeply buried and self-sufficient shelters in an era of air power and nuclear weapons. In 1960 the French Army initiated inquiries among the other French forces and among NATO members concerning the use of Maginot fortifications as storage depots or as command centers. In 1961, after discussions with the Americans and West Germans, Rochonvillers, Molvange and Soetrich were placed at the disposal of NATO. Rochonviller's main magazine, with its two entries and circulation loop crossed by five galleries, was made into a wartime command center for the NATO Central Army Group (CENTAG) (normally located at Fontainebleau) at a cost of 380 million francs. Rochonvillers functioned in this role until 1967, when France withdrew from NATO's integrated command structure. The command center is located close to and between the personnel entry and the munitions entry, with connections to each. It is more than a kilometer from the command center to the main combat blocks via the main underground gallery. CENTAG's headquarters were moved to Brunssum, the Netherlands, where the deactivated Hendrik coal mine was available for use. In 1971 the names of the Maginot ouvrages were declassified by the French military. At the same time, Rochonvillers was demoted from a fortified position of the first rank to a lower status, foreshadowing a general divestment of the Maginot Line's function as a fortification. After deactivation in 1967, Rochonvillers was renovated in 1980 as the French First Army's hardened command center. Work included replacement of the ventilation and filtration system and construction of a blast wall a short distance in front of the main entry. The installation was planned to house 500 people for an extended period, immune to the effects of electromagnetic pulse, radioactivity, chemical weapons and all but a direct hit with a nuclear weapon. The electrical generating plant and underground barracks were renovated. Most exposed concrete faces in the entry blocks were covered with earth as a blast shield, while the combat blocks themselves were used only as antenna mounts. The peacetime 1st Army headquarters was moved from Strasbourg to Metz in 1989, in part to be closer to Rochonvillers. From 1981 to 1998 the command center was maintained by a small staff in between full-scale exercises. With the disappearance of the Soviet threat, the command center was deactivated. Visited with @The-Raw, @Maniac, @extreme_ironing and Elliot5200. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 (I removed the graffiti with the "Nazi"-lettering). 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31
  11. This chateau is located within about 50 metres of a huge abandoned sanatorium so presumably it was connected in some way, perhaps used for training or for senior management accommodation? I don't know, but it's still in pretty good condition for the most part and has some nice features despite being practically empty. An unopened pack of orange juice cartons suggests it has been abandoned since 2005. I'll post a report up from the sanatorium separately when I get time. 1. 2. 3. Scale model of the sanatorium 4. 5. 6. 7. & 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. & 13. 14. 15. 16. & 17. 18. 19. 20. We nearly missed this little chapel, still in amazing condition 21. 22. 23. Au revoir
  12. France Bustes 2016

    Mad dash with Stussy for a fun dash in france As usual photofuckit has reduced quality
  13. Another backlog report here. Visited with @AndyK! and @Jamie_P in the pouring rain and as night was approaching, so the photos were a little difficult to process. Quite a nice castle though, completely white on the outside with four massive turrets. Inside there isn't much left aside from some typical french architecture, which was pretty nice to see, but difficult to capture in the fading light. Hope my photos can do some justice, try your best to ignore the noise - Cheers.
  14. Another tasty french chateau today. Really enjoyed this place, and I had wanted to go back here for a while as last year we were only able to access one room It's a bit of an interesting one, as each room seems to be set in a different style from one another, and this provides for an interesting walk around, and varied photo opportunities. The two main things I wanted to see here were the library and the chapel, and they didn't disappoint at all. Some great architecture and some left over items to see here Visited with @AndyK! and Kriegaffe9. Entrance Hall: Nice Rooms: Library: Chapel: Cheeers
  15. First report from the latest trip abroad! This old mansion sits in a small village, the gates are wide open and the locals don't seem to even care about it. The highlight here was definitely the grand entrance hall, surrounded by pillars, red carpet, grand staircase, and a lumiere-esque balcony above it. There were also some pretty nice side rooms too. From what I can gather the last use this building had was as a hotel, judging by the slight modernization of some areas. A nice relaxed explore with @AndyK! and Kriegaffe9. Featuring: My tripod because I'm too lazy to shop it out. Cheers
  16. Right, Found out i still had an active membership here and kind of forgot about it (The ADHD is strong in this one) So I decided to start posting again, since I'd like to get some honest/valuable feedback on my pictures and that is something i am surely missing on social media. So here it goes. Visited this castle in July 2017. I really like the decay and that there's so little graffiti. Seems like most vandals forgot this castle which made me happy. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
  17. History Ouvrage Latiremont is a gros ouvrage (large work) of the Maginot Line – a line of concrete fortifications, obstacles and weapon installations built by France in the 1930s to deter invasion by Germany. The site of Ouvrage Latiremont was selected and approved by the Commission d’Organisation des Régions Fortifiées (CORF) in 1931. It cost eighty-eight million francs (approximately twelve million in pound sterling) to construct the fortification. The design of Ouvrage Latiremont is known as a casemate fortress – a fortified or armoured structure, also referred to as a vaulted chamber, from which guns are fired. Once completed, 75mm and 81mm guns were installed and a second phase was planned, to add additional 75mm and 135mm gun turret blocks. However, the second phase of the development never went ahead as the funding was allocated elsewhere. Latiremont has two main entrances and six combat blocks (three infantry blocks and three artillery). It also comprises more than five kilometres of underground tunnels and galleries; these are at an average depth of thirty metres. A small narrow-gauge railway system, which was connected to a regional military railway system, once linked all six sections of the fortress and it was used to transport supplies, such as equipment, food and ammunition. There were said to be several stations inside Latiremont which were large enough to service and store large trains. Once fully operational, Latiremont was placed under the command of Commandant Pophillat. Pophillat had twenty-one officers and five-hundred and eighty men of the 149th Fortress Infantry Regiment at his disposal. Following the 1939 invasion of Poland, Britain and France declared war on Germany. Thereafter, between the September 1939 and June 1940, Latiremont fired over 14,4 52 75mm rounds and 4,234 81mm rounds at German forces. The fortress, though, was not directly attacked until June 1940. On the 21st June 1940, the German 161st Division led by Colonel Gerhard Wilck, which brought 210mm howitzers and 305mm siege mortars with them, launched their attack against Latiremont. While the attack was underway, a small number of German units moved to the rear of the Maginot Line where they were able to cut power and communications. Despite heavy resistant from Latiremont and nearby fortress Fermont, firing ceased on 25th June and both garrisons surrendered to the German forces on 27th June. For the remainder of the war, the area was used for a German propaganda film, to document the June 1940 attacks, but it did not see any further significant fighting. In 1951 the French government attempted to restore many of the northeastern ouvrages, to defend against a potential advance by the Warsaw Pact. However, following the establishment of the French Nuclear Strike Force, the importance of the Maginot Line diminished. Latiremont was subsequently abandoned by the military in 1967. Today, the fortress remains abandoned and has suffered heavily from water ingress. Our Version of Events Aside from drinking beer, this explore was our reason for being on the other side of the English Channel. We weren’t certain at all if the place would be doable, but after reading about it we decided it was probably worth the risk. Nonetheless, towards the end of our trip there was a sudden drop in team morale. This resulted in us taking a vote in an Aldi car park, over French bread and Biscoff, on whether or not we should crack on and drive for three more hours to reach Latiremont, or turn tail and check out a few old manors as we headed back to the ferry terminus. With the votes all in and tucked nicely into a hat, we made a short ceremony out of revealing the results. In the end, the remainers won, four to two, so there would be no leaving Europe just yet. We finished off our Biscoff and spent our remaining Euros on food in Aldi before we set off for Latiremont. Our combined wealth got us a couple of tins of beans, a box of mushrooms and some spices to sprinkle on top. Someone did offer to buy our car in the car park after we got the supplies in, but we had to insist we really needed it to get home to England. The potential buyer still didn’t seem to see that as a problem though. It was quite a mission to shake him. The drive over to the border of Luxembourg was very pleasant. We played some banging tunes and arrived at the location with plenty of time to spare. At first, we had anticipated that finding the fortress in the forest would be quite a challenge, but as it turned out we stumbled across it within ten minutes of being there. Gaining access to the gros ouvrage was a little more tricky of course – it is a military fortress after all! Once inside, we found ourselves in a standard-looking bunker. There were signs and evidence that guns had been positioned in here, and at first we thought that was that. Most bunkers we’ve entered have been fairly compact and bare, and you can usually get through all the rooms very quickly. Our minds were blown, then, when we discovered a lift shaft and, after peering down to see how high it was, realised we couldn’t see the bottom. Obviously extremely excited at the point, at the prospect the place was going to be absolutely huge, we began to make our way down a staircase next to the lift shaft. We made our way down the steps, which went on for a long, long time, until we reached the bottom where we found ourselves in a cold tunnel surrounded by enormous blast doors. It was at this point we realised we’d underestimated how big this place really is. For the next few hours, then, we made our way through different snaking tunnels, and explored many side rooms and chambers leading off from them. One of the best parts of the explore that we came across was some sort of old gun turret. There were plenty of others things to see as well though. This place was certainly a bit of a time capsule. The only problem, however, was that we started to lose track of where we were inside the fortress. It’s very easy to get lost in the labyrinth-like corridors and rooms and we’d eaten all the bread earlier in the day, so making a breadcrumb trail had been out of the question. Eventually, we felt as though we were well and truly lost so decided it was time to find a way back to the surface. It took a little while, and a few false turns, before we found a tunnel that sort of looked familiar. We followed it and, thankfully, ended up back where we started. All in all, then, this explore was absolutely fantastic – certainly one of the best military fortifications we’ve ever explored. It’s also steeped in interesting history about the war. Anyone who happens to find themselves near Luxembourg should definitely pay this place a visit. You never know your luck after all, you might find a way inside like we did. Explored with Ford Mayhem, MKD, Rizla Rider, The Hurricane and Husky. 1: 2: 3: 4: 5: 6: 7: 8: 9: 10: 11: 12: 13: 14: 15: 16: 17: 18: 19: 20: 21: 22: 23: 24: 25: 26: 27: 28: 29: 30: 31: 32: 33: 34: 35: 36: 37: 38: 39: 40: 41: 42: 43: 44: 45: 46:
  18. Not sure on dates of closure, but a beautiful power plant. This was used to power the Iron works next door which has now become a museum. Thanks!
  19. The Maginot Line, named after the French Minister of War André Maginot, was a line of concrete fortifications, obstacles, and weapon installations built by France in the 1930s to deter invasion by Germany. It was constructed along the borders with Switzerland, Germany, and Luxembourg. Ouvrage translates as "works" in English: published documents in both English and French refer to these fortifications in this manner, rather than as "forts". An ouvrage typically consists of a series of concrete-encased strongpoints on the surface, linked by underground tunnels with common underground works (shops, barracks, and factories etc.). Constructions started in the early 1930s. They served during the Second World War, and were often reused during the Cold War before being gradually abandoned by the French army. This particular ouvrage consists of two combat blocks connected by an underground gallery and was manned by 100 men before surrendering to the Germans in 1940. I put this on the list of things to check despite information suggesting it was secured. Glad I did as it turned out to be pretty nice inside. All items have been removed but it's pretty clean with some nice signage and murals on the walls throughout. Just a small part of a very fruitful trip with @Maniac @extreme_ironingand Elliot5200. 1. Starting from ground level 2. 3. 4. Coat of arms painted on the wall 5. 6. Sealed entrance in one of the combat blocks. 7. Hand painted signage could be found everywhere: 'Victory' 8. 'One for all, and all for one', the motto of the Three Musketeers 9. 'Be a man' 10. & 11. 12. & 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 'Honor work solidarity' 24. 25. 26. 27. 'Secrecy is a matter of honor for communications personnel' 28. Notice the dirty footprints up the wall, not sure how those got there. 29. This mural was definitely the coolest find. 30. Just to finish off, a couple of pics from another petit ouvrage that was also meant to be sealed. It was flooded in here, the water reached waist deep in this brickwork tunnel so we had to give up. 31. Calcite coated the floor throughout. 32. Gun machinery would have been positioned here. Cheers for looking
  20. History The construction of the camp started in 1930 and was completed in 1933. The barracks was expanded in 1935 - 36. Today, the camp has 18 buildings, including a water tower. In time of peace, it housed the fortress troops of the surrounding bunkers, like the large artillery fortresses of Rochonvillers and Molvange. During the occupation, the camp was be used by the Germans. Later the camp was used by the training companies of the regiments, stationed at Thionville. At the Saint Gabriel day (patron of transmissions) in 1961 or 1962, General Massu (commanding the 6th Military Region and friend of the camp commander, Captain Laurent) visited the camp of Angevillers. At times still used as a training ground, the camp was finally abandoned in 2008. Visited two times. My first visit was at the beginning of May, with @The-Raw, @Maniac, @extreme_ironing and Elliot5200. But due to too little time I could not enter all buildings. For this reason I returned three weeks later with a none member, to explore the rest of the area, too. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 - the former kirchen 10 11 12 - the dining room 13 14 15 16 - inside the water tower 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28
  21. The Maginot Line, named after the French Minister of War André Maginot, was a line of concrete fortifications, obstacles, and weapon installations built by France in the 1930s to deter invasion by Germany. It was constructed along the borders with Switzerland, Germany, and Luxembourg. Ouvrage translates as "works" in English: published documents in both English and French refer to these fortifications in this manner, rather than as "forts". An ouvrage typically consists of a series of concrete-encased strongpoints on the surface, linked by underground tunnels with common underground works (shops, barracks, and factories etc.). Constructions started in the early 1930s. They served during the Second World War, and were often reused during the Cold War before being gradually abandoned by the French army. Ouvrage Latiremont is a gros (large) ouvrage of the Maginot Line, located in the Fortified Sector of the Crusnes, sub-sector of Arrancy. It lies between the gros ouvrage Fermont and the petit ouvrage Mauvais Bois, facing Belgium. More than 1,200 metres (3,900 ft) of underground galleries connect the entries to the farthest block, at an average depth of 30 metres (98 ft). The gallery system was served by a narrow-gauge (60 cm) railway that continued out of the ammunition entrance and connected to a regional military railway system for the movement of material along the front a few kilometres to the rear. Several "stations" along the gallery system, located in wider sections of gallery, permitted trains to pass or be stored. The 1940 manning of the ouvrage under the command of Commandant Pophillat comprised 21 officers and 580 men of the 149th Fortress Infantry Regiment. Latiremont was active in 1939-1940, coming under direct attack in late June 1940. From September 1939 to June 1940, Latiremont fired 14,452 75mm rounds and 4,234 81mm rounds at German forces and in support of neighbouring units. It was not until June 1940 that Latiremont and Fermont were directly attacked by the German 161st Division, which brought 21 cm howitzers and 30.5 cm mortars on 21 June. By this time, German units were moving in the rear of the Line, cutting power and communications. Heavy fire repelled attacks but Latiremont's garrison surrendered to the Germans on 27 June 1940. After renovations during the Cold War, it was abandoned. This was the first of 3 gros ouvrages I visited with Elliot5200, @Maniac, and @extreme_ironing. Also good to hook up with @Gromr123 who happened to be nearby on this occasion. Photos can't quite convey how large it is in here, 1.5km from one end to the other. We only saw a portion of it due to time constrictions, but you could easily spend a whole day in here. 1. 2. 3. 4. Some amazing blast doors down here 5. 6. 7. Workshop with a lathe inside 8. Remains of a kitchen 9. Shower block 10. 11. 12. Blast door inside one of the attack blocks on the surface 13.Some rusty gun machinery still in situ 14. 15. 16. 17. Another epic blast door 18. 19. 20. Engine Room 21. 22. 23. 24. Train station for bringing in materials, the platform on the left 25. 26. <3 this door 27. 28. Cheers for looking
  22. The Maginot Line, named after the French Minister of War André Maginot, was a line of concrete fortifications, obstacles, and weapon installations built by France in the 1930s to deter invasion by Germany. It was constructed along the borders with Switzerland, Germany, and Luxembourg. Ouvrage translates as "works" in English: published documents in both English and French refer to these fortifications in this manner, rather than as "forts". An ouvrage typically consists of a series of concrete-encased strongpoints on the surface, linked by underground tunnels with common underground works (shops, barracks, and factories etc.). Constructions started in the early 1930s. They served during the Second World War, and were often reused during the Cold War before being gradually abandoned by the French army. Ouvrage Bréhain is part of the Fortified Sector of the Crusnes of the Maginot Line. It was approved for construction in May 1931 and completed at a cost of 84 million francs. The gros ouvrage was equipped with long-range artillery, and faced the border with Luxembourg. It saw no major action in either the Battle of France in 1940 or the Lorraine Campaign of 1944. Bréhain is a large ouvrage with a gallery system extending over 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) from end to end. The munitions and personnel entries are located far to the rear of the compactly arranged combat blocks, with the entries hidden in the woods. An "M1" ammunition magazine is located just inside the ammunition entry, while the underground barracks are located near the junction of the two entry galleries. From there a long, straight gallery runs at an average depth of 30 metres (98 ft) to eight combat blocks. As part of an uncommenced second phase, Bréhain was to receive a second 135mm turret. A gallery was projected to link the turret block to the Casemate de l'Ouest de Bréhain, which was built as (and remained) an unconnected infantry combat block. The ouvrage has two entries and eight combat blocks. The 1940 manning of the ouvrage under the command of Commandant Vanier comprised 615 men and 22 officers of the 128th Fortress Infantry Regiment and the 152nd Position Artillery Regiment. The units were under the umbrella of the 42nd Fortress Corps of the 3rd Army, Army Group 2. On 21 June 1940 Brehain engaged advancing German troops, but saw no serious action Bréhain's chief efforts went to the support of neighboring fortifications, with 20,250 75mm, 1,780 81mm and 2,220 135mm shells fired between September 1939 and June 1940. 4200 shots were fired in support of actions at Esch 10–14 May 1940, and 10,145 shots of all kinds were fired 13–25 June 1940. The 22 June 1940 armistice brought an end to fighting. However, the Maginot fortifications to the west of the Moselle did not surrender immediately, maintaining their garrisons through a series of negotiations. Bréhain, along with Mauvais-Bois, Bois-du-Four and Aumetz surrendered on 27 June. In 1951 Bréhain was renovated for use against a potential invasion by Warsaw Pact forces, becoming part of the môle de Rochonvillers strongpoint in company with Rochonvillers, Molvange and later Immerhof. After the establishment of the French nuclear strike force, the importance of the Line declined, and most locations were sold to the public or abandoned. Visited with @Andy, @Maniac, @extreme_ironingand Elliot5200. This was the main destination of our trip, although we ended up visiting 4 others while over there. The place is huge, we only saw a portion of it due to time. Luckily the one combat block we checked was complete with all it's original gun machinery intact. Another nice feature of this one was the old murals and posters dotted around the place. Amazing place, need to return and see the rest of it! 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. Thanks for looking.
  23. Ouvrage Bréhain is part of the Fortified Sector of the Crusnes of the Maginot Line. The gros ouvrage was equipped with long-range artillery, and faced the border with Luxembourg. It saw no major action in either the Battle of France in 1940 or the Lorraine Campaign of 1944. Bréhain was approved for construction in May 1931. It was completed at a cost of 84 million francs by the contractor Ballot of Paris. Compared with its neighbors, the ultimate plans for Aumetz, Bréhain, Bois-du-Four and Ouvrage Mauvais-Bois closely resemble each other, but Bréhain is the most fully realized, with only one unbuilt combat block and an unconnected casemate block. Its neighbors were built as petits ouvrages, to be developed with full tunnel networks at a later date. Bréhain is a large ouvrage with a gallery system extending over 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) from end to end. The munitions and personnel entries are located far to the rear of the compactly arranged combat blocks, with the entries hidden in the woods. An "M1" ammunition magazine is located just inside the ammunition entry, while the underground barracks are located near the junction of the two entry galleries. From there a long, straight gallery runs at an average depth of 30 metres (98 ft) to eight combat blocks. As part of an uncommenced second phase, Bréhain was to receive a second 135mm turret. A gallery was projected to link the turret block to the Casemate de l'Ouest de Bréhain, which was built as (and remained) an unconnected infantry combat block. The ouvrage has two entries and eight combat blocks. The 1940 manning of the ouvrage under the command of Commandant Vanier comprised 615 men and 22 officers of the 128th Fortress Infantry Regiment and the 152nd Position Artillery Regiment. The units were under the umbrella of the 42nd Fortress Corps of the 3rd Army, Army Group 2. On 21 June 1940 Brehain engaged advancing German troops, but saw no serious action Bréhain's chief efforts went to the support of neighboring fortifications, with 20,250 75mm, 1,780 81mm and 2,220 135mm shells fired between September 1939 and June 1940. 4200 shots were fired in support of actions at Esch 10–14 May 1940, and 10,145 shots of all kinds were fired 13–25 June 1940. The 22 June 1940 armistice brought an end to fighting. However, the Maginot fortifications to the west of the Moselle did not surrender immediately, maintaining their garrisons through a series of negotiations. Bréhain, along with Mauvais-Bois, Bois-du-Four and Aumetz surrendered on 27 June. In 1951 Bréhain was renovated for use against a potential invasion by Warsaw Pact forces, becoming part of the môle de Rochonvillers strongpoint in company with Rochonvillers, Molvange and later Immerhof. After the establishment of the French nuclear strike force, the importance of the Line declined, and most locations were sold to the public or abandoned. Visited with @The_Raw, @Maniac, @extreme_ironing and Elliot5200. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22
  24. The Maginot Line, named after the French Minister of War André Maginot, was a line of concrete fortifications, obstacles, and weapon installations built by France in the 1930s to deter invasion by Germany. It was constructed along the borders with Switzerland, Germany, and Luxembourg. Ouvrage translates as "works" in English: published documents in both English and French refer to these fortifications in this manner, rather than as "forts". An ouvrage typically consists of a series of concrete-encased strongpoints on the surface, linked by underground tunnels with common underground works (shops, barracks, and factories etc.). Constructions started in the early 1930s. They served during the Second World War, and were often reused during the Cold War before being gradually abandoned by the French army. Ouvrage Rochonvillers Ouvrage Rochonvillers is one of the largest of the Maginot Line fortifications. Located above the town of Rochonvillers in the French region of Lorraine, the gros ouvrage or large work was fully equipped and occupied in 1935 as part of the Fortified Sector of Thionville in the Moselle. It is located between the petit ouvrage d'Aumetz and the gros ouvrage Molvange, facing the border between Luxembourg and France with nine combat blocks. Rochonvillers saw little action during World War II, but due to its size it was repaired and retained in service after the war. During the Cold War it found a new use as a hardened military command center, first for NATO and then for the French Army until 1998. The ouvrage remains under the control of the French Army. Sadly the bunker has suffered badly from fire damage throughout and has been ransacked. Only a few areas remain intact. Visited with @Maniac, @Andy,@extreme_ironing and Elliot5200. 1. Camouflaged entrance 2. No stairs in here, just a long ramp taking you underground 3. Fire damage is immediately evident 4. 5. Burnt bed frames 6. 7. A large section has been rebuilt with mundane breeze blocks for the Cold war era, this was updated in the 80s 8. Lecture theatre with torn projection screen 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. An entire block of bedrooms remains in good condition with all the beds still in place 15. 16. 17. These engines also still in reasonable condition considering. 18. 19. Control room, sadly ripped to pieces now. 20. How it looked in the 90s, a glimpse of how nice this place might have been when it was immaculate. Shame it's so trashed now. Camp d'Angevillers The camp of Angevillers is part of a barracks located near ouvrages Molvange and Rochonvillers. It was built at the same time as the Maginot line, construction was completed in April 1933. It is now used occasionally for military exercises. All the buildings were pretty much empty but still made for a nice wander. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. Inside the water tower Thanks for looking.
  25. A seminary in France that was later used as a medical centre and with a beautiful chapel! I think it closed within the past decade. Thanks for looking!
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