The coastline and beaches of Anglesey draw thousands of tourists to the Island every year, but most will be unaware that this same coastline was patrolled by fragile Royal Naval Airships almost 100 years ago looking for First World War U-boats, or that the beaches were once potential landing sites for a German invasion in 1940. Airfields, army camps and naval bases sprang up around the Island during the Second World War and brought the modern world into what was a predominantly rural part of the country. Most of these military installations only lasted for the duration of the war, but the military never left as the Cold War took hold. RAF Valley’s jets have been a constant sight in Anglesey’s skies for over sixty years, training our future fighter pilots, while the nearby motor racing circuit at Ty Croes was once a Top Secret research base for Britain’s guided missiles, developed to bring down the high-flying bombers of the Soviet Airforce. Gun batteries, pillboxes, airfields, radar sites, missile ranges and underground nuclear bunkers were all built on the Island. While it would appear at first glance that there is little left today, Anglesey still has a rich and diverse array of military remains that reflect the tumultuous events of the twentieth century. This books sets out to discover and record what remains today on Anglesey before this important part of the Island’s history is lost forever.
By Mark Dalton (31 Dec 2013)