A bit of a mish mash as I couldn't find much just on the Chapel but this is what I did find.
After its closure, the land of the former Hospital was purchased for residential development by Bloor Homes. It was sold off to various other developers such as Redrow, Barratt, Harron Homes, Wimpey and PJ Livesey although Bloor’s were the major house builder for the new Wadsley Park estate which was constructed on the site of the old hospital. The Wadsley Park village consists of a mixture of houses and apartments of various sizes. Some of the old hospital structures were designated as listed buildings, the main admin block (the clock tower), Kingswood ward, the church and the porters lodge were all grade II listed and could not be demolished with the rest of the hospital.
The administration building and clock tower were converted into 38 luxury apartments by Urbani after permission to demolish the building was denied and the building is now known as Middlewood Lodge. The Kingswood ward has been converted into 85 apartments by developers PJ Livesey and is known as Kingswood Hall. The porter's lodge on Middlewood Road has been refurbished and is now a nursery. The hospital church has been derelict for many years, it held its last service on 6 November 1996 to mark the closure of the hospital. In March 2012 plans were submitted by architectural design consultancy Coda Studios that may see the imposing Victorian church converted into a mixture of town houses and apartments. The scheme which needs approval from Sheffield City Council also contains proposals for a selection of partially underground eco-friendly bungalows beneath the building.
Visited with @hamtagger , we had allready been on one explore in Sheffield and were running out of daylight hours so needed one that wasn't going to take long. I had seen the post @Paulpowers had posted on this little chapel and liked the look of it.
Not much left to it really but what I did see was nice. The initial thought I had when seeing it was it looked like a really gloomy church. Almost hidden beneath greenery you could see the spire and top poking out as we approached. Entry was relatively easy. The ground had been dug out inside with channels in between each Column. I am assuming they do this to see what the foundations are like. Actually I didn't assume this. HT told me and I just thought it would make me a little more intelligent haha!
The structure is pretty sound, quite sad to see how much graf and vandalism this place has had. It's always quite sad to see someone deface the 'house of god'. Not that I am religious or anything but more respectful if anything.
There are some wonderful stained glass windows in here, especially the one which was placed in there just after World War II. Anyway, not much left to say on this place.
1: The Exterior
2: The inside looking back from the Altar
5: The right Transept windows
6: The remains of the Organ
7: The Original flooring, mostly covered in Pigeon Shit
8: One of the few remaining Stained Glass windows
9: The part I liked the most, still 100% intact too. A little slice of history
This was originally an invite kindly offered by Mr Jobs for me and the wife,the wife had to decline due to ill health so i jumped at the chance of 3 days under paris with a bunch of strange chaps in waders.
Was picked up by Maniac along with non member Mr perry to then head to dover to meet Bigjobs,Paradox,Fb,James and amy and then head out on the 2.15 ferry!
Bit of car trouble and a sleep later we are all on our way into Paris to find our entry point.
Once inside i have to say it was pretty full on with the pace and we spent the majority of the time on the march from one area to the next and from what i can gather we did some milage from the very north to the furthest south of this section with many stop off's in-between,i didnt have chance to grab as many pictures as i wanted to due to the camera being buried under the kit i took and for not wanting to hold the rest of the group up constantly setting up shots,and to be fair there is no real way to get my gear out safely when your ball deep in water.
Really enjoyed this trip and the party nye was a great end to the night with some really decent people.
Enough waffle and on with the pictures that i did manage to get..Just a final massive thanks to all concerned ,it was a great trip and one i wont forget in a hurry
Pics in no particular order..
People with maps who know where im going..
Pic heavy alert
And my favourite picture
Thanks to all involved couldn't have imagined a more decent a way to spent NYE..
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. 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.
12 (I removed the graffiti with the "Nazi"-lettering).
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.
9 - the former kirchen
12 - the dining room
16 - inside the water tower
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!
Thanks for looking.