Day 9: 13th April 2014: 70th anniversary of the fire at Lager Wick

Today is the 70th anniversary, to the day, that Leslie Sinel wrote in his diary of the German occupation of Jersey, that three barrack blocks burned down at Lager Wick. There are two stories as to how this happened. In one version of events, the stove in the hut got too hot and set the barrack alight. In another version, the huts were burned down in an act of arson. Unfortunately, the area of burning is just outside our excavation area, but there’s always potential for a second season!

Today I took the team to Noirmont Point to see the bunkers on the headland. Fortunately, we managed to get inside the command bunker, although it was officially closed to the public. A member of the Channel Islands Occupation Society was inside taking photos, getting the display ready for the new season. I also took Peter and Marek to see the most recently excavated bunker, which has a memorial to forced and slave labour / information plaque on display outside the entrance, as stipulated by the Planning Department as a condition of granting permission for the excavation of this bunker. Today’s photo shows them both standing beside this plaque.

We also opened Trench 2 today and worked very hard in removing the first layer before leaving the site. By the end of the day we were utterly exhausted and I could have flopped into bed but instead have several hours of pot washing, bagging and cataloging ahead of me!Image

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About Gilly Carr

I am a Senior Lecturer in Archaeology at the University of Cambridge's Institute of Continuing Education. I work in the field of conflict archaeology and POW archaeology, and my fieldwork is based in the Channel Islands.

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